A Must-See for the Whole Family
Reviewed by Karina Lawrence
The anticipation and majestic energy began to stir as you entered the Lyric Theatre at The Star Sydney for the reveal of Cinderella the Musical. As you walked past the white iconic carriage through the foyer into the theatre, with the reveal of a story book forrest feel set, the flooding sense of wonder of this magical fairy tale played over and over in your mind.
Produced by John Frost, Opera Australia and Crossroads Live, this Rodgers and Hammerstein’s Cinderella story was full of magic, fascination and enchantment right from the opening scene. The sweetness and unaware beauty of Ella or as she’s most famously recognised, Cinderella played beautifully by Shubshri Kandiah, radiated through the auditorium.
The music and storyline were both engaging and entertaining as straight away the humour of this play was delivered and well received from the attentive audience. The rumble of laughter was certainly executed throughout the performance, proving to be a hint for adults and children a like.
The charm and talent from Prince Topher played by Ainsley Melham was certainly noted. He’s characterisation and vocals were impressive. The casting for each of these well known roles was unique and delivered beautifully from the talented cast.
From the Wicked Step Mother played by Tina Busill, who you can’t help but loath with her beautifully delivered nasty and bitter vibes to the beautiful and inspirational Fairy Godmother, known as Marie played by the majestic and talented Silvie Paladino. You can’t help but fall in love with these iconic characters, as we are taken on a modern day version of the original French Story “Cendrillion”, published in 1697.
The lighting design from Kennith Posner and associate lighting designer, Trudy Dalgleish was exquisite. The sets by designer Anna Louizos, didn’t disappoint as we were transported through scenes and far a way lands with seamless transitions.
Now the costumes, designed by William Ivey Long were just like magic. The reveal of changing wardrobe right before our eyes on numerous occasions with the transitions of Ella’s stunning ballgown in particular, was certainly a memorable moment offering that sense of fascination and wonder all at once.
Such beautiful attention to detail in all the stunning costumes through ought this production, with intricate features, stunning colours and periodic themed wardrobe.
The choreography was beautifully executed by the ensemble and the way the stage was transformed with the layers and levels of transitions was ever so pleasing to the eye.
Memorable moments of choreography and energy was delivered with the ladies of the cast featured on the grand steps at the special ball with the wonderful characterisations played with stand out performances from Bianca Bruce with the role of Charlotte , one of the ugly step sisters.
Beautiful technical dancers that were lifted and leaped in some spectacular moments of the romantic fairytale.
Some powerful moments with great examples of athleticism from two featured dancers William Brougham and Liam Shilvock, who play the Fox and Raccoon and Footman and driver. Again a stunning moment with the multitude of sets in the scene featuring the horse drawn carriage.
The connection and relationship portrayed by the other ugly step sister Gabrielle, played by Matilda Moran was heartfelt, warm and sweetly charismatic between herself and Ella.
So many potent messages of love and kindness and identity is touched on in this production. Mixed in with the beaut and enhanced magic of one’s imagination makes it a delightful production that is certainly worth checking out. You’ll be entertained, memorised and fall in love with this fairytale again and again as you venture back to your childhood and enjoy this revamped, sensational visit to the theatre.
A must see for the whole family for a once upon a time opportunity to be wowed and engaged with this uplifting performance.