CHICAGO -- Following a 12-year absence, the Shubert Theatre is putting out the gold-plated litter box: Cats returns April 15 for a two-weekend run of 16 performances.
It's part of a bigger feat: Combined tours have brought Andrew Lloyd Webber's feline musical to 208 cities in the U.S. and Canada. Last November, the 4th National Touring Company, which is doggedly revisiting Chicago (it played other Chicago theatres since then), set a record by surpassing the original tour of Oklahoma! to become the longest running individual touring company in history -- at 10 years, 6 months and 2 weeks. (But what else can be expected from the show that is now the longest running musical in Broadway history?) Cats was last seen at the Shubert, Chicago's preeminent Broadway transfer house, in 1986.