Broadway Review: Cinderella

Critical Confabulations

Rodgers & Hammerstein’s Cinderella gets a new book by Douglas Carter Beane

UnknownCinderella’s never been our most feminist of fairy tale heroines, but in the current Broadway production of Rodgers and Hammerstein’s Cinderella, playing at the Broadway Theatre, the sugar-sweet damsel in distress isn’t so, well, distressed. In its first Broadway staging — R&H’s classic, starring Julie Andrews, was televised in 1957; and then again in 1965 with Celeste Holme as Fairy Godmother and Ginger Rogers as the Queen; and then again in 1997 with pop star Brandy and Fairy Godmother Whitney Houston — our girl Cindy (or Ella, as this production prefers) has no shame in knowing and getting what she wants. Leaving that glass slipper on the staircase isn’t accidental — it’s intentional.

If only all moments in this newly ‘modernized’ Cinderella were as delightfully, and humorously, forward-thinking. Playwright Douglas Carter Beane (whose The Nance is also…

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