Broadway's Cats had a real taste of "Now And Forever" July 14, when its 7000th performance at the Winter Garden Theatre was celebrated with speeches, a giant cake and cupcakes for the crowd.
Jimmy Lockett (who plays Old Deuteronomy) addressed the audience after the matinee curtain calls and said, "I'm glad you can all be here to help us celebrate." Many audience members gasped in surprise at the news that the show they'd just seen was a milestone. Then Lockett announced that there were cupcakes for everyone in the lobby.
Lockett then introduced the Chairman of the Shubert Organization, producer Gerald Schoenfeld. A giant cake for the cast members was wheeled on stage. Schoenfeld said, "This is indeed a historic moment."
He told the assembled that they were still as enthusiastic as the audience that first embraced the show seventeen years ago. Finally, the crowd joined the cast members in singing the chorus from "Mr. Mistoffelees." The black cake was the two-eyed, feline emblem from the show, with white writing: Cats -- 7000th Performance -- July 14, 1999." After Schoenfeld finished cutting the cake with the two-foot knife, he jokingly held it up and asked, "Who wants a lick?"
More than 20 large boxes of cupcakes were brought into the lobby. When asked exactly how many were ordered, company manager Tony Magner replied, "Enough for everyone in the audience (we hope)." Cats opened October 7, 1982, and became the longest running show in Broadway history, June 19, 1997. It includes the music of Andrew Lloyd Webber and is based on T.S. Elliot's "Old Possum's Book of Practical Cats."
For tickets to Cats call the box office at (212) 239-6200.