'Cats' gets rap twist for West End revival

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Photo - British composer Andrew Lloyd Webber, centre, director Trevor Nunn, centre left, and choreographer Gillian Lynne, centre right, pose for the photographers with performers in cat costumes, during a photo-op to promote the return of the musical Cats, in central London, Monday, July 7, 2014. The show, based on T.S Eliot's 'Old Possum's Book of Practical Cats', will return to the West End for a limited 12-week run from Dec, 2014. Cats, one of the longest-running shows in West End and on Broadway, received its world premiere in London in 1981 where it played for 21 record-breaking years and almost 9,000 performances. According to its creators Cats has been presented in over 26 countries, has been translated into 10 languages and has been seen by over 50 million people world-wide. (AP Photo/Lefteris Pitarakis)
British composer Andrew Lloyd Webber, centre, director Trevor Nunn, centre left, and choreographer Gillian Lynne, centre right, pose for the photographers with performers in cat costumes, during a photo-op to promote the return of the musical Cats, in central London, Monday, July 7, 2014. The show, based on T.S Eliot's 'Old Possum's Book of Practical Cats', will return to the West End for a limited 12-week run from Dec, 2014. Cats, one of the longest-running shows in West End and on Broadway, received its world premiere in London in 1981 where it played for 21 record-breaking years and almost 9,000 performances. According to its creators Cats has been presented in over 26 countries, has been translated into 10 languages and has been seen by over 50 million people world-wide. (AP Photo/Lefteris Pitarakis)
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LONDON (AP) — "Cats" is back — and now one of the felines raps.

Andrew Lloyd Webber's musical returns to London's West End in December in a revamped production with a hip-hop flavor.

Based on T.S. Eliot's whimsical "Old Possum's Book Of Practical Cats," the musical opened in London in 1981, running for 21 years there and 18 years on Broadway.

Lloyd Webber said Monday he had tweaked parts of the show, which has been performed in more than 30 countries.

Lloyd Webber said he was making the character of Rum Tum Tugger a rapping street cat because "I've come to the conclusion that ... maybe Eliot was the inventor of rap."

The show, helmed by original director Trevor Nunn, runs at London's Palladium for 12 weeks beginning Dec. 6.

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