With additional songs by Michael Ward
& Herman Wheatley
At the Black Ensemble Theater, Chicago
Still thrilling after all the years.
Jackie Taylor’s 1976 hit musical, The Other Cinderella, is renounced as a holiday show every other year and the 21012 version is an energetic and totally satisfying musical treat. Featuring original songs by Jackie Taylor & Michael Ward with some input by Herman Wheatley, The Other Cinderella is a retelling of the classic fable from a distinct Afro-centric twist. Filled with characters from the hood to augment the classic characters, this heartwarming musical is filled with rich humor and stinging zingers.
Filled with soulful music that has R & B, gospel, blues, as well as stirring anthems, musically it is a treat of the first order. The original tunes work to further the story as well as capture the mood and the emotions of the singer. You’ll empathize with Ta_Tnisa Wilson’s Cinderella and you’ll laugh at Stepmomma Dawn Bless and her two daughters, Geneva (Jessica Moore) and Margarite (Lisa Beasley). The Kingdom of Other welcomes everyone and surly has soul.
The Other Cinderella is a family-friendly musical with loads of humor as well as toe-tapping original tunes and strong anthems. I can see why this show has become the most successful show in the history of the Black Ensemble. Jackie Taylor continues to infuse the production with updated quips and new twists to keep the show fresh. Robert Reddrick, as music director, has his five musicians producing wonderful sounds to the fine score .
Delivering a fine message of love, hope and the importance of believing in yourself, The Other Cinderella is a uplifting ode to the human spirit. It is also a refreshingly fun holiday show that begs to be seen over and over. I must admit that, until now, I have never seen thsi terrific show. Shame on me. I’ll be sure to put this show on my list of “Must See” each year it is mounted.
Talk theatre in Chicago podcast
Date Reviewed: December 2, 2012
For more info checkout The Other Cinderella page at theatreinchicago.com
At Black Ensemble Theater, 4450 N. Clark, Chicago, IL, call 773-769-4451, www.blackensembletheater.org. tickets $55 – $65, Wednesdays & Thursdays at 7:30, Fridays at 8 pm, Saturdays at 3 & 8 pm, Sundays at 3 pm, running time is 2 hours, 30 minutes with intermission, through January 13, 2013