A new show, “Katdashians! Break the Musical!” is playing in New York to a mix of scoffs and compliments, with a little angst and a lot of laughter thrown in. The parody combines characters based on the Kardashian family of reality show fame, accompanied by themes and parody songs mimicking the long-running musical, Cats.
Carmen Mendoza tops the marquee, making her Off-broadway debut as Kim Katdashian, with Elliott Brooks and Bridget Kennedy rounding out the leading cast as Khloe and Kourtney. The trio sing and dance their way through the story along with a supporting cast of other famous family kitten characters. The musical recounts the last dozen years with the family, incorporating witty dialogue and irreverent musical numbers into the clever sendup.
The wacky show sounds like a good time, but Andrew Lloyd Webber isn’t laughing. He’s threatened legal action against the show’s writers, Bob and Tobly McSmith, for stealing his songs from “Cats.” Webber argues that among others, the song ““Meowmeries” doesn’t parody “Cats,” but simply appropriates the music and lyrics for the Kardashian-themed storyline.
The McSmiths responded by cutting six songs, including their take on “Memories” from the show. They say audiences have responded best to their original songs in the show, so they expect the show’s success to continue. The talented duo has been producing hilarity in parody productions like “Bayside! The Musical” and “Full House! The Musical” for about ten years. The Kardashian and Cats themed musical made its off-Broadway debut at Theater80 in New York in May. Its run at the Elektra Theater in Times Square continues through July.