The Cats Mother


Is our cuteness factor, the colour of our coats and pedigree important in terms of how much we matter in other people’s eyes?

The Cats Mother was a collaboration between Katy Dye and Craig Manson. In this performance two ‘cats’ occupied a pet pen. They lolled on the laps of audience members, inviting stroking and adoring. They licked milk from pristine white dishes and played with cute plastic toys as the theme of Schindler’s List burst from the sound system. The cats began to list characteristics of little kittens that are not seen as worthy of love, or saving if they were in danger - maybe their coats were too mangy, their eyes too scratched, their meows too piercing, or maybe they were cats that just came from the wrong side of town.. The Cats Mother was an exploration of empathy in our contemporary world, and who is ‘cute’ enough to save.

The performance was developed as part of a week long residency with The National Theatre of Scotland. A twenty minute work in progress performance was shown in September 2017 at Emergency micro festival in Manchester, curated by Word of Warning. Comments from Emergency Sharing:

"A superb piece where the performers take on cat personae to demonstrate how we love cuteness, and attractiveness. A great example of using innovative form to present an important message in a new way" - Quiet Man Dave

"Katy Dye  and Craig Manson took things in a challenging and unexpected direction with ‘The Cat’s Mother‘ – a show that started out cute and ended up raging against entitlement.  It managed to say a lot of pertinent stuff about empathy, the media, injustice and prejudice in a very short space of time. Dye’s closing rant delivered in a child-like voice was chilling" - Circles and Stalls