Oscar E Moore

From the rear mezzanine theatre, movies and moore

Oscar E Moore header image 2

BAD CINDERELLA – a screw-ball, frantic, nonsensical, compound fractured fairy tale production led by producer NO GUARANTEES – says it all

March 28th, 2023 by Oscar E Moore


Poor Cyndi!  Forced to being an outcast ‘cuz she doesn’t conform to the standards set forth in Belleville where “beauty is a duty” – just one of the not-so-nifty lyrics of David Zippel’s disappointing words set to the not-so-nifty music of Sir Andrew Lloyd Webber in this not-so-new musical in search of its story and style by the not-so-terrific director Laurence Connor.

As I arrived at the Imperial Theatre expecting to see the “bomb” with bad word of mouth and a slew of unanimously bad reviews of BAD CINDERELLA dancing through my head I was unexpectedly surprised to see a horde of people, mostly pre-teen and teen girls eagerly awaiting to enter.

After viewing this inconsistent, over the top show I understood.  This is BAD CINDERELLA’S core ticket buying audience.  This is the new mean girls musical geared to get them screeching and hooting from their expensive seats at the spare no expense vulgar tourist trap spectacle set before them.

This is a new type of musical for a new audience.  Little do they know what a real musical should be – and they won’t learn from this one.  This is a little bit American Idol, a little bit of hold that last note out for as long as possible and get those hoots and screams.  A little bit So You Think You Can Dance.

A dumbed down musical.  Cruise ship and/or ice arena extravaganza material.  A Carol Burnett satire.  But without wit.  Without focus.  Without the necessary talent to pull it off.

Lavish, garish, swirling gaudy gowns.  Bare chested hunky men extolling their “hot buns” and enticing tempting pecs straight (and I use the term loosely) out of Chippendales.

There is a trade mark Lloyd Webber ballad.  Oft re-echoed.  Sounding like a tune from BEAUTY AND THE BEAST.  There is a barbed duet between the Queen and Cyndi’s stepmother bringing to mind Jerry Herman’s “Bosom Buddies” from MAME but without his flair for words and music.

For most of the show my mind kept wandering and wondering what I was seeing reminded me of.  Not a good sign.

A fast revolving turntable where a half a cow is being milked and storybook sets reminiscent of Disney and INTO THE WOODS (that other far superior fairy tale inspired musical by Sondheim).  Mr. Stephen Sondheim knew exactly what he was creating.  Poor Cyndi is another story altogether.  Fresh juicy oranges vs rotten peaches.

I shan’t bore you with the story as is.  They do that for you.  Except for the clever updated twist as its grand finale.  The last twenty minutes suddenly became alive.  I was finally interested in these characters and what happens to them.

As if the fairy Godmother (resident plastic surgeon) waved her magic wand (a hypodermic needle) for an all-inclusive out-of-the-closet-happily-ever-after inspiration.

It almost saved the show.  But almost doesn’t count.  Cast names withheld to protect the innocent.  They are courageous and work their tails off.

Photos:  Matthew Murphy / Evan Zimmerman

Imperial Theatre 249 West 45th Street

2 hrs. 30 min.  One Intermission.  Through Sept. 3rd 2023




Tags: No Comments

Leave A Comment

0 responses so far ↓

  • There are no comments yet...Kick things off by filling out the form below.