The hit Rodger & Hammerstein musical “Cinderella” will be gracing the Vern Riffe Center for the Arts stage later this month, performed by the students from West High School.
The musical adds a new dimension and twist to a classic fairytale. In the 1957 classic a young woman named Cinderella is forced into a life of servitude by her cruel stepmother, and dreams of a better life. With the help of her Fairy Godmother, Cinderella is transformed into an elegant young lady and is able to attend the ball and meet her Prince.
In this version, Cinderella must open the Prince’s eyes to the injustice in his kingdom. The Prince’s parents have died, leaving the kingdom in the hands of a villainous Prime Minister, who has served as a mentor to the Prince and has duped his young charge into approving oppressive legislation. The rebel Jean-Michel, a new character, and stepsister Gabrielle are in love, and the two seek to overthrow the government.
“It’s a very technical show, it’s not the Cinderella that people expect to see, it’s interesting and it has a fresh new angle. This show isn’t just for kids, there is something in the show for all ages to enjoy,” said Vocal Director Linda Tieman.
The score includes the best-known songs from the original version and feature four new songs from the Rodgers and Hammerstein catalog.
“This is such a high energy show, and the cast is amazing. The ensemble has put in so much hard work, especially with the choreography, we love this show a lot, it’s very fun,” said senior and Fairy Godmother, Hannah Miller.
Fellow senior Brice Osborne, who plays the Prince, says that the cast has worked exceptionally well together and believes that the show is going to very successful. “There have been times where we’ve been at practice until 7:30 or 8 after school but nobody ever complains, everyone is really into it this year and it’s just amazing.”
Tyler Maple has been involved with the music program for the past two years, and he never thought he would be starring in a lead role. He will play rebel Jean-Michel in the performance. Mrs. Tieman has helped him to break out of his comfort zone and try something new. “This is my first lead role, and Mrs. Tieman has helped me build up my skills as an actor, she’s amazing. I’ve had a lot fun with it and I really enjoy this show, I think everyone else will too,” Maple said.
Helping behind the scenes are set-builders and designers Ed Ingles and Gary Tieman and choreographer Heather Cate.
Tieman’s son Clark will be co-directing the show and will also be assisted by student Director, Seth Ewing.
“It’s been really fun to do things from the other side, after being away for four years and coming back, I think if anything, the students have become more intense and more involved. The students have really risen to the occasion, there’s been no complaining. It’s amazing to see how much work goes into a production like this when you’re looking at it from a bigger picture. When you’re a student you worry about your own role and what you are doing. It’s a really cohesive environment and it’s been great to see the students come together,” Clark said.
The show will open curtain on Friday, April 29 at 7:30 p.m. followed by two performances on Saturday April 30, the first at 2 p.m. and the second at 7:30. The show will close Sunday May 1, with the final performance at 2 p.m.
Standard tickets are $12 and student tickets are $8.
Tickets and information are available 10-5 p.m. at the McKinley Box Office, 740-351-3600. Information and tickets are also available online through Ticketmaster at www.ticketmaster.com/venue/41868 or any TicketMaster outlet.
Reach Ciara Conley at 740-353-3101 ext. 1932 or via Twitter @PDT_Ciara