Sep 9, 2009

Empathizing with Grizabella

Although Cats was the first musical that I've watched, the role of the glamour cat - Grizabella - has always stuck to my mind.

In fact, in all of the characters in fiction, she's become my favorite. There's something in her sadness that I find attractive. There's so much beauty in so much sorrow and tragedy that screams to be remembered.

Is it her song, Memory, that continues to hunt my entrails? Her sorrowful departure from the Jellicle tribe and eventually the yearning to belong again? Or can it be the idea of rebirth that was gifted to her by Deuteronomy at the end of the story?

Years ago, I've written about how I was able to empathize so much with the character of Grizabella because I felt that glamour has somehow escaped me. (No, not because I weigh more than *gasp* 100lbs!)

Does man really need to experience these emotional trenches in order for them to see what comedy, joy and beauty really is? But then again, as I've said, there's beauty in sorrow and tragedy.

"I remember the time I knew what happiness was, let the memory live again."

Is happiness really that subjective? How about beauty or perfection?

(The name Grizabella was derived from two words: Grizzle which means disheveled, and belle which means beauty. Disheveled beauty.)

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