Performances Begin Tuesday, November 10
Hotspots Exclusive Interview
Rodgers & Hammerstein’s Cinderella, the 2013 Tony Award-winning Broadway musical from the creators of South Pacific and The Sound of Music, will play the Dr. Phillips Center in Orlando for a limited engagement from Tuesday, November 10 through Sunday, November 15, 2015. These performances are part of the Fairwinds Broadway in Orlando series.
With its fresh new take on the beloved tale of a young woman who is transformed from a chambermaid into a princess, this hilarious and romantic Rodgers & Hammerstein’s Cinderella combines the story’s classic elements – glass slippers, pumpkin, and a beautiful ball along with some surprising twists. More than just a pretty face with the right shoe size, this Cinderella is a contemporary figure living in a fairytale setting. She is a spirited young woman with savvy and soul who doesn’t let her rags or her gowns trip her up in her quest for kindness, compassion and forgiveness. She longs to escape the drudgery of her work at home and instead work to make the world a better place. She not only fights for her own dreams, but forces the prince to open his eyes to the world around him and realize his dreams too.
Direct from playing the role on Broadway, Paige Faure has taken her glass slippers on the road as she continues in the title role for the tour. Ready to sweep Cinderella off her feet, Andy Huntington Jones plays the role of Prince Topher. Andy was a member of the original Broadway company of Rodgers & Hammerstein’s Cinderella and understudied the role of Prince Topher.
The touring cast also features Kecia Lewis as Marie, The Fairy Godmother, Beth Glover as Madame, Ella’s wicked stepmother, Will Blum as Jean-Michele, Kaitlyn Davidson as Gabrielle, Aymee Garcia as Charlotte, Antoine L. Smith as Lord Pinkleton and Branch Woodman as Sebastian.
Cinderella has music by Richard Rodgers, lyrics by Oscar Hammerstein II, a new book by Douglas Carter Beane and original book by Oscar Hammerstein II. The musical is directed by Mark Brokaw and choreographed by Josh Rhodes. Music adaptation, supervision and arrangements are by David Chase and orchestrations are by Danny Troob.
One of Rodgers & Hammerstein’s most popular titles, Cinderella was written for television — debuting in 1957 starring Julie Andrews. In 2013, the show made its long-overdue Broadway debut. Along with Cinderella, Richard Rodgers and Oscar Hammerstein’s legendary musicals include Oklahoma!, Carousel, The King and I, South Pacific and The Sound of Music.
Mr. Beane’s book for Cinderella blends masterfully with the musical’s cherished score with songs including “In My Own Little Corner,” “Impossible/It’s Possible,” “Ten Minutes Ago” and “Do I Love You Because You’re Beautiful?”
Rodgers & Hammerstein’s Cinderella will play November 10-15 at the Dr. Phillips Center. Performances will be Tuesdays – Fridays at 8 p.m., Saturdays at 2 p.m. and 8 p.m., and Sundays at 1 p.m. and 6 p.m. Tickets start at $32.75 per person and can be purchased online at drphillipscenter.org or by calling (844) 513-2014.
Andy Huntington Jones, the son of a lesbian couple, was introduced to musical theater at a young age and joins the cast of the North American touring production of Cinderella straight from Broadway. He was the understudy for Prince Topher on Broadway and earned the role outright for the traveling production.
I spoke with him briefly about the play for this exclusive Hotspots interview.
For people who have seen Cinderella in movies and on TV, how does the stage version differ?
Our version of Cinderella features an updated script by Douglas Carter Beane. The music will consist of the numbers people recognize from the Julie Andrews version and the Lesley Ann Warren version. I personally remember the Brandy and Whitney Houston version better, and some of that music is present too. There is a new, contemporary twist here: instead of a downtrodden girl getting a makeover, we get to showcase Cinderella’s kind qualities and she shows that a smile can change the world.
What do you like about playing the lead male character, Prince Topher, in this production?
I like that I’ve been with this character for so long and that he’s so multi-faceted. I’ve known his dialogue now for a year and a half, inside out, and what intrigues me is that he is such a powerful man, but he’s insecure, and he doesn’t realize what kind of good he can offer the world until he meets Cinderella. She lets him know what his strengths are. I feel like I can relate so much to him. It’s fun to play a character who is neurotic, especially when people expect him to be suave and put together with a curl in his hair.