|“||Growltiger had no eye or ear for aught but Griddlebone, and the Lady seemed enraptured by his manly baritone.||”|
Griddlebone is a featured character in the musical Cats. A larger-than-life parody of an operatic soprano, she appears in "Growltiger's Last Stand" where she leads her suitor, the dreaded Growltiger, to his demise at the hands of a gang of Siamese cats. Whether or not she does this intentionally is usually left ambiguous.
The role, along with the entire "Growltiger's Last Stand" sequence, has been cut from several prominent productions including the 1998 film, and in all US and UK replica productions since the 2016 Broadway revival. However, a revamped version of Griddlebone appeared in the 2019 movie.
Griddlebone is portrayed as a vain and flamboyant character. She is a pastiche of an operatic soprano, fighting the tenor (Growltiger) for the spotlight. It is hinted in the song "Macavity the Mystery Cat" that she might be a villain, as she is one of the cats whose wicked deeds are widely known as an alleged agent for Macavity.
|“||The "Opera Cat". Wide range soprano, low G# to high C. Dance a plus, but not necessary. Must move well. Age range 20's-40's.
Vocal: Strong classically trained operatic Soprano capable of a wide range of dramatic timbre, including preferably a good belt voice. Comfortable range to high C.
Griddlebone only appears in the "Growltiger's Last Stand" sequence. She boards Growltiger's barge and flirts with him. Growltiger and Griddlebone sing a Lover's Duet, all the while competing for the spotlight, far more interested in showing off than in each other. Growltiger is too distracted by Griddlebone to notice that his enemy, the Siamese, are slowly creeping up on his barge. When the Siamese launch their attack, Griddlebone quickly escapes, leaving Growltiger to his fate.
Griddlebone is usually played by Jellylorum so as to complement her singing "Gus: The Theatre Cat" with Gus, who in turn plays Growltiger. In some 1980s/1990s European productions, particularly those based on the 1983 Vienna production, she is instead played by the actress who plays Jennyanydots. This removes the need for quick costume changes.
Even when the role is cut, Griddlebone is still mentioned in "Macavity the Mystery Cat" as one of Macavity's rumoured agents.
In the Japanese production, Griddlebone is portrayed as an outright villain who gleefully leads Growltiger to his death.
The following names have also been used for the character of Griddlebone in various international productions:
- Silkesben (Swedish) - meaning "silken leg"
- Lady Kylkiluu
- La Chatelune
- Golfatriz (Spanish) - a blend of Golfa (slang for "slut") and Meretriz ("prostitute")
Griddlebone is a white, fluffy Persian queen. She wears a comically exaggerated costume, a cinched corset bodice with so much fluff on her legs it gives the illusion of her wearing bloomers. This suggests she is meeting Growltiger while wearing underwear, therefore portraying her as a rather risqué character. Practically, it is a single piece suit that Jellylorum wears over her normal costume with a matching hat over her wig.
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