'Cats' Musical Wiki

Willie Rosario was cast as Skimbleshanks in the original Broadway cast in 1982, however had to withdraw due to injury. He went on to play the role on tour one year later.

Cats Credits[]

US Tour 1 - 12/1983 - 12/1985 - Skimbleshanks

Extract from Stephen Mo Hanan's "A Cat's Diary":[]

Day 25: September 5 (Labor Day)

At three we warmed up with the opening and went on to the Ball. Midway through the first men's quartet, landing from a double tour, Willie [Rosario] let out a yelp that grew into agonizing howls, groans and sobs. Some people helped him over to the side, put an ice pack on his knee (an old injury) and waited. His pain filled the room, sobs of more than physical grief -- clearly the apprehension of being unable to do the role. We huddled or knelt together in small groups, praying, crying, whispering, while the stage management bustled about for a medic. Reed (his standby) massaged Willie's heart, Cynthia [Onrubia] held his hand, Bonnie [Simmons] pressed the ice to his knee and Terry [Mann] held a compress to his forehead. Gillie came over and kissed him. "Willie, darling, you tell the doctors to do whatever they like as long as I can have you on opening night. It doesn't matter if you miss a few previews, you can learn a lot from sitting out here and watching, but what counts is that I have you on the 7th." Gerry Schoenfeld called the head orthopedist at Bellevue and arranged for an ambulance to take Willie direct to an examination. Cynthia and Hector [Jaime Mercado] spoke to him in Spanish, getting his locker key and retrieving his stuff and at last [Production Stage Manager] David T[aylor] and Hector carried him from the room. Oh God how sad! Lovely, affable, funny, popcorn-dancer Willie. We all pray for his speedy healing and return to our midst.