Nicole MacDowell Staff Writer
Broadway has decided that the classic fairytale would make a great musical. And once again, they were right.
I’ll be honest, I went into the theatre expecting something less than fantastic. Even though it is Broadway, my expectations were low. After witnessing the magic of Phantom of the Opera, I was prepared for disappointment.
I was wrong. From the minute the Overture began to the minute they completed their bows, I was entranced and captivated by the performance.
Let’s break it down, piece by piece.
Scenery and Lighting
The scenery was very detailed and the lighting provided the sense that you were in this ancient forest. The set pieces moved fluidly and everything fit together very well. The palace staircase was very impressive because it was engineered in such a way that the top few stairs could retract to provide for a versatile balcony as well.
To an untrained eye, nothing was wrong. As someone who has worked in the theatre, I noticed a few flaws. First, some of the large tree pieces never fully made it off stage, leaving trees in the center of the palace scenes. Second, some pieces of the cottage weren’t always aligned correctly.
These small discrepancies would go unnoticed to member of the general public and didn’t have too much of an effect on the flow of the play.
Costume changes are the most difficult aspects of any production. Most of them have to occur in less than 30 seconds and may involve removing large amounts of clothing.
Anybody familiar with the story of Cinderella knows that she changes dresses many times over the course of the show. In any other production, the actress would have to rush off-stage, change and re-enter. However, the stage manager and costume designer made the costume changes so precise that she would change from one dress to another mid-stage and you never saw how.
As someone who has done many costume changes, including turning the Beast into a human prince in Beauty and the Beast, I know it’s hard. But this was flawless.
The other costumes, including the fairy godmother costume were well executed and fit the time period they were portraying with large hoop skirts and very eclectic hairstyles.
Props are the second most important part of any play after scenery. If they aren’t placed properly or if they aren’t even on stage, the actors have to improvise. I give credit to the props manager because so many things had to be precise.
Some of the key props, such as the pumpkin that becomes the coach and the 4 white mice that turn into the horses had to be there or the theatrical magic would look out of place. Nothing was ever out of place, from a box of jewelry to a carrot.
The music was very good. The pit orchestra and actors clearly spent countless hours working together, especially since the actors’ voices would be drowned out by the music.
The acting was absolutely amazing, the casting director has a very good idea of who best performs each part. Their voices and motions were fluid and they were focused and into their characters.
The play was well written and followed the original storyline well. However, to fit into the context of Broadway, things had to be rewritten which added to the charm and mystery of the whole thing.
The actors and actresses have devoted hundreds, if not thousands, of hours to rehearsals and it definitely shows.
All in all, the show was definitely not your typical Cinderella story. It took the original Grimm fairytale popularized by Disney and turned into a live representation of what every girl dreams of: love.
Cinderella is a timeless classic that will never get old. Whether it is the cartoon version or the musical version, the message it portrays is a valuable one. It reminds the audience, young and old, that you should just be yourself and someone will truly fall in love with you.
I highly recommend that you see it if you have the chance. I promise, it’s worth your money.
Rating: 7.5 / 10
http://www.YouTube.com/PopWrapped (COMING SOON!)
http://www.PopWrapped.com (COMING SOON!)