The cat is back

“Pussycat,” presented at Studio 115 Theatre on campus last November, is traveling to Southern Utah University to perform at the American College Theatre Festival in Cedar City this week.

Written by U grad Troy Deutsch, the play was invited to be one of 10 plays from a region with a selection of more than 170 plays to perform at the festival.

Set in the late ’90s, “Pussycat” takes place in the middle of the underground rave-scene boom. With the ephemeral, drug-induced world as a background and the poetic language of the rave as its foundation, “Pussycat” sinks its claws in the hearts and minds of audiences.

The story follows main characters Stephan and Pussycat, one (Pussycat) already trapped in the rave world of chaos and drug dealing, the other (Stephan) being gradually seduced by it.

The play evolves into an almost-tragic love story as audience members witness the disjointed scenes of love, lust and chemical influence that conflate the past, present and ever-uncertain future. As the story unfolds, Stephan is lured and eventually trapped in a world in which he is completely lost.

“Pussycat” will be performed with one major exception from its original performance. The role of Pussycat, originally performed by Brighton Hertford, has been given to sophomore Actor Training Program student Catherine Macmillan, who says she is equally terrified and excited about the role.

“It’s frightening,” she said.

Macmillan stepped into the role after Hertford left the U for personal reasons. “You can’t escape being compared,” said Macmillan. “It’s hard.”

Despite the challenges, Macmillan is approaching the role with an open heart and mind.

“It’s something I’m glad is being brought to the stage because it’s a theatrical lifestyle,” she said.

Macmillan is confident that “Pussycat” will do well in Cedar City. The best aspect of the opportunity for her, as she put it, is that she has the chance to pretend to be a superhero.

“It’s every girl’s dream,” she said.

“Pussycat” will be performed Feb. 16 at 10 a.m. at the Randall Theatre in Cedar City. It will be among 10 other plays vying for an invitation to perform in Washington, D.C., at the John F. Kennedy Center for the Performing Arts.

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