Bronson N. Murphy has many fond memories of visiting his aunt, uncle and cousins in the Indianapolis area when he was younger. His ties to Indiana also include a couple of seasons (2008-09) performing in live shows at Holiday World and Splashing Safari in Santa Claus, Indiana. Soon, Murphy’s history with Indiana will continue when he appears in the 30th Anniversary national tour of CATS, November 26-28 at Clowes Memorial Hall.
Based on T.S. Eliot’s Old Possum’s Book of Practical Cats, and with music by Andrew Lloyd Webber, CATS, which opened on London’s West End in 1981, and on Broadway in 1982,won seven 1983 Tony Awards including Best Musical, Best Book of a Musical, Best Lighting and Best Costumes. In October of 1991 it became the longest continuously touring show in American theatre history.
Originally from Bowling Green, Kentucky, Murphy’s credits span over 40 roles and solo appearances in numerous productions. With an undergraduate degree from Western Kentucky University, Murphy also holds a masters degree in vocal performance, which he received from New York University in 2010.
A member of a mostly new cast performing in the current leg of the tour which began in early November (in Kansas City, Missouri), Murphy, a lyric tenor, plays the roles of Gus, Growltiger and Bustopher Jones.
Speaking recently by phone, from Merrillville, Indiana, Murphy says he is having the time of his life.“They keep us busy. We’re having such a good time playing in wonderful theatres to great audiences who are just loving the shows. It makes our job so much easier to play in front of audiences who are interested in what we’re doing.”
Catching the bug while performing in a community theatre musical when he was in the six grade, Murphy is thrilled to be living a life for which he was educated and trained. Being in the company of others who love performing as much as he does is also plus for Murphy who says, “It’s absolutely terrific. I’ve never worked with a more talented group of people. Cats is one of those shows where you can’t get away without being a triple threat [actor, singer, dancer]. Each cast member also has the fourth threat—personality. They all have kind hearts too which makes living together in hotels and travelling on a tour bus so much easier when you like the people you work with. They are like a family to me.”
As far as what Indianapolis audiences should expect when they come to see CATS, Murphy says, “CATS is one of those musicals you don’t need to know anything about to see it. You just have to be ready to see a spectacle because it’s one of the most colorful, well lighted show you’ll ever see. All you have to do is sit back, relax and watch humans beings CATS.
CATS will play Clowes Memorial Hall, November 26-28, 2010: Friday at 8:00 p.m., Saturday at 2:00 p.m. & 8:00 p.m. and Sunday at 1:00 p.m.. Tickets range in price from $22.00 -$62.00 and may be purchased in person at Clowes Memorial Hall, the Old National Centre Box Office of the Murat Theatre, and the Broadway Across America Box Office downtown at 342 Massachusetts Avenue.You can also purchase them online at BroadwayAcrossAmerica.com and by phone at 1-800-982-2787.