|the Step-family (Dean Holt, Autumn Ness, Reed Sigmund,
photo by Dan Norman)
|the Prince and Cinderella rock it out (David Murray and
Traci Allen Shannon, photo by Dan Norman)
|the exquisately designed ballroom (photo by Dan Norman)
On the backstage tour we got to see some of costume and scenic designer Eduardo Sicangco's original elaborate drawings. The saying "third time's the charm" seems to apply here; the prop-master said that they've finally been able to execute all of the elements of the design that they may not have had time for the first or second time around, taking what they built before and adding to it to make it even better. The attention to detail in the four main sets (the kitchen with the massive fireplace, the stepsisters' bright and colorful bedroom, the dreamy winter garden, and the cool elegant ballroom) is truly mind-boggling and impossible to take in in just one sitting. The costumes are truly stunning, from the outrageous Step-family, to the exquisite hand-painted blue ballgowns, to the oversized frames of the mouse and reindeer heads, to Cinderella's sparkle-tastic wedding dress. Magic is created when pumpkins fly and adorable little mice pop up out of nowhere (puppet design by Eric J. Van Wyk). A lot of time, work, energy, and love went into creating the environment for Cinderella, and it shows.
Cinderella is a light and fun show, but I can't help looking at it a little deeper. It's impossible to view the world the same as I did a week ago, or to view theater the same as I did a week ago. I've been hearing the phrase "Trump's America" a lot lately, but I reject that notion. This is not Trump's America, this is our America, it belongs to all of us. I do not live in Trump's America, I live in an America where people of all races, gender identities, sexual orientations, ages, ethnicities, religions, and nationalities laugh, play, sing, and dance together; where Sarah Brown Eyes and Coalhouse Walker Jr. get the happy ending they deserve; where kindness and beauty triumph over cruelty and ugliness. An America that is beautifully represented on the Children's Theatre stage. Now is the time to envision our America through our art and to bring it to reality, in small ways or large. Cinderella fills my heart with hope and joy, with wonder at the beauty we can create if we all believe and work together.
Cinderella continues through January 8. Tickets can be expensive, especially for large families, but balcony seats are cheaper, as are weekdays, and there are a limited number of $15 tickets at some performances. So search around to find the best price (and remember, lap passes for children three and under are just $5). Every child deserves to experience the joy of Cinderella and not be limited by cost.
Keep scrolling for more backstage photos and a video put together by Kendra of Artfully Engaging.
|costume sketches for the Step-family
|the wig room
|building Cincerella's ball gown
|the hand-painted ball gowns
|a mouse head
|applying the sparkles to Cinderella's wedding dress
|creating five pairs of glass slippers
|the stairway in the palace
|the view of the theater from backstage
|the complex system for raising and lowering set pieces
|rehearsing the ballroom scene
|Cinderella and the Prince "meet cute"
|Autumn Ness, Dean Holt, and Reed Sigmund
|Traci Allen Shannon and David Murray