Article from Denver Post
Thanks to Lisa for this information!

This critic loved it and the other one trashed it.  It makes you 
wonder.  Maybe one of them wasn't invited to the party after the 

'Cinderella' charms 

By Sandra C. Dillard 
Denver Post Theater Critic

Thursday, August 02, 2001 - Cinderella" makes you smile from its 
opening minutes when Eartha Kitt appears in a glittery gown as a 
the most deadpan, no-nonsense, matter-of-fact fairy godmother 
who ever lived. She's a sprite who dispenses life lessons as 
much as magic. 

Special/Carol Rosegg  
While this Rodgers and Hammerstein musical, directed by Gabriel 
Barre, boasts no memorable music, it's a charmer of a show and 
nice family entertainment. It acknowledges the children in the 
audience, but does not always pander to them. 

The cast is appealing, especially Paolo Montalban as a young 
Prince being pushed into marriage by his eager mother (Leslie 
Becker), and his go-along-to-get-along father (Ken Prymus). 

Montalban, whose rich voice complements his dark good looks, is 
empathetic as a level-headed young man who wants to marry for 
love, rather than convenience, and wants to wed someone he can 
talk to. 

He and sweet-voiced Deborah Gibson, as the much put-upon 
Cinderella, have nice chemistry together, the kind of pull 
that's apparent from the moment they pass each other in the 
village market and then briefly meet when the disguised prince 
accidentally knocks her packages from her arms and then helps 
pick them up. "A girl should be treated with kindness and 
respect," he says - one of the script's many well-meaning 
adages, and one that gives a strong clue into his character. 

The market, a bustling, colorful scene with lots of energy, is 
the setting for Montalban and Gibson's best song, "The Sweetest 

Kitt gets top billing. She wields a strong stage presence and 
delights in showing that she's as agile as ever at 74, as sge 
leaps, kicks and bounds about as The Fairy Godmother and gets 
one of her biggest laughs when she appears from a "magical" 
cloud of smoke, coughing and gasping. Her Fairy Godmother is the 
kind who doesn't grant Cinderella's wish to go to the ball 
immediately. Rather, she waits until the hapless waif details 
her own plans for achieving her goal and helps her, "now that 
you're ready to take responsibility for your own destiny" (a 
life lesson). 

The appearance of the golden coach with its spinning wheels and 
white-garbed dancers appearing as prancing "horses," is one of 
the must impressive moments in a show filled with visual treats 
that include a lighted castle in the background, a huge full 
moon, and an inky, star-studded sky. 

Surprisingly enough, Cinderella's ball gown, which should be a 
showstopper, isn't, but the ball scene, where she and the Prince 
meet and fall in love, is nicely handled. 

Victor Trent Cook is thoroughly enjoyable as the Prince's 
steward, Lionel, whose accurate observations and sharp comic 
asides pepper the plot. 

Everett Quinton, in a towering red-haired 'do, is happily over-
the-top as The Stepmother, who berates Cinderella nonstop. The 
Stepmother is determined to wed one of her two ungainly 
daughters to the Prince and later proves equally determined to 
snag the horrified Lionel for herself. 

The homely daughters, braying Joy (Alexandra Kolb) and itching, 
scratching Grace (NaTasha Yvette Williams) are the antithesis of 
their names, which adds to the humor, although Williams' black-
sitcom characterization is a little jarring in this medieval 

Sparked throughout by the antics of stick-manipulated puppets 
that include four white mice, a plump house cat and swirling 
dove, "Cinderella" moves at a swift pace to its fairy-tale 
ending, when the heroine who is lovely both inside and out 
(another life lesson) marries the handsome prince.


*** (out of four stars) 

Written by: Richard Rodgers and Oscar Hammerstein II 

Starring: Eartha Kitt, Paolo Montalban and Deborah Gibson 

Directed by: Gabriel Barre 

Presented by: Denver Center Attractions 

Where: The Buell Theatre, Denver Performing Arts Complex, 14th 
and Curtis streets 

When: Through Aug. 12; 8 p.m. Tuesday-Saturday; 7:30 p.m. 
Sunday; 2 p.m. Saturday and Sunday matinees 

Tickets: $20-$55; 303-893-4100 or 303-830-8497; outside Denver, 
800-641-1222; groups, 20 or more, 303-446-4829