“The Glass Slippers are so back!” Rodgers and Hammerstein’s Cinderella adaptation makes its Broadway debut and offers a new romantic twist on the ultimate rags to riches makeover story. The musical mixes fresh comedy with the fairy tale's well-loved classic elements - the pumpkin, glass slipper, masked ball and more. In addition to musical numbers from the original score - including "In My Own Little Corner," "Impossible/It's Possible," "Ten Minutes Ago" and "Do I Love You Because You're Beautiful?" -This Cinderella will include several new songs from the Rodgers & Hammerstein duo.
This huge production is led by two-time Tony nominee Laura Osnes. As Ella, Osnes is the perfect fairytale princess; she brings a rare elegance to the stage that makes the audience fall in love with her immediately. Santino Fontana plays the tortured Prince Topher. Handsome, lovable, and sweet, he is everything young girls have grown up wishing for in a man. The audience can’t help but feel that Osnes and Fontana belong together.
Joining the cast is Rebecca Luker, replacing Victoria Clack as Crazy Marie/Fairy Godmother. Luker brings wisdom, magic, and illusions; she is flawless, faultless, and completely deserving of her character’s “crazy.” The exemplary Ann Harada, Marla Mindelle, and Harriet Harris bring a big twist to the well-known step-sisters and stepmother. Harada is quirky and hilarious and steals the show with her song “Stepsisters Lament,” while Mindelle is nerdy, heartwarming and adorable. Harris is the ultimate villain, charging onstage with wit, sass and just enough nastiness to make an audience root for Cinderella’s dreams to come true at the expense her ugly step-mother.
With a show this big, there needs to be a top notch production staff, as a group they need to be able to create magic onstage. The set design was done by Anna Louizos, consisting of moving trees, secret doors, and giant picturesque set pieces. Tony Award winner William Ivey Long is responsible for the ingenious designs that turn Cinderella’s dress from rags to riches and Crazy Marie into the Fairy Godmother with a mere flick of the wrist. Kenneth Posner’s light design ties all the technical aspects together with perfect mood lighting, making this production a truly stunning piece to watch.
Rodgers and Hammerstein’s Cinderella opened on Broadway on February 21, 2013 at the Broadway Theatre (1681 Broadway). This is a great show for the whole family, so grab the kids and waltz over to the Broadway Theatre for a truly magical evening that will leave you believing in the power of wishing.
Review By: James Russo