Loddon-raised Libby Watts finds her role just purrfect

Richard Astbury as Coricopat and Lizzi Franklin as Tantomile

Richard Astbury as Coricopat and Lizzi Franklin as Tantomile - Credit: Archant

Loddon-raised dancer Libby Watts is making a welcome return to Norwich Theatre Royal to be part of the cast of the lavish musical Cats, running until April 12. She was last seen treading the theatre's boards as part of the cast for the theatre's festive spectacular Cinderella last Christmas. She can currently been seen as part of the feline performers, playing the character Swing.

Libby Watts

Libby Watts - Credit: Archant

What is it like being part of a show like Cats?

It is a great honour to be part of a fantastic iconic show. I am always very proud whenever. I perform with the cast and it is a show that you can get so much joy and happiness from. It is a really iconic show.

Is it a show you have always enjoyed and what do you like about it?

I watched the film of Cats when I was little and loved the story and all of the songs. However being in it is so much more enjoyable. I think the best part about the show is that every cat has a different character, so each cat can tell a different story. Throughout the show, they each have their own moment so it is always great to watch and be a part of. I also love that we are a tribe of cats because that makes it even more special between the cast on stage and off stage.

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Do you have a favourite moment in the show?

As a person that really loves to dance, the Jellicle Ball is a dancers dream. It is around 12 minutes long of constant technical dance and the energy from the cast creates such a buzz throughout the number. Although you are exhausted at the end of it, I always look forward to it every show. There are also so many emotional moments during the show with some of the other cats in the tribe, which is so great to watch and enjoy the audience's reactions.

Did you enjoy starring in Cinderella and what were your memories of the Norwich panto?

I absolutely loved being part of Cinderella for the first time in the Norwich pantomime. I thought the cast were wonderful and made me feel very at home. The company went that extra mile with the set and the costumes, which definitely didn't go unnoticed by the audience. I would love to be a part of this pantomime again.

Lots of people have ambitions to follow in your footsteps and make performing their career. What would your advice be to anyone thinking of following in your footsteps?

I feel as long as you are dedicated and you have a real love for performing you can achieve your dreams and ambitions. It is a very competitive industry but if you can work as hard as you can with your training, then it can only set you up as much as possible for all of the auditions. I first trained with the June Glennie School of Dance in Beccles and Lowestoft, which from there they taught me everything I have needed to know from a very young age. I have always been proud and thanked them for such incredible training and for helping me find my love for dance and performing.

n Cats continues at Norwich Theatre Royal until April 12, 7.30pm, 2.30pm Apr 10/12, £39.50-£6.50, 01603 630000, www.theatreroyalnorwich.co.ukwww.catsthemusical.com

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