Thanks to Lisa for this article!
Cinderella Review from the Chicago Tribune

Stage struck
'Cinderella' adds new tricks to aid its move from TV

By Richard Christiansen 

If the Disney organization can turn old animated movies into new 
stage hits, why shouldn't the Rodgers & Hammerstein 
Organization, which boasts almost as well known a brand name in 
family entertainment, be able to do the same thing with an old 
television show? 
That seems to be the theory behind "Cinderella," the touring 
musical adapted (by Tom Briggs) from the original 1957 R&H TV 
musical and its 1997 updated version, which is spending two 
weeks here in the Ford Center for the Performing Arts of the 
Oriental Theatre. 

Balanced between children's fairy tale and adult musical, the 
production tells the story of Cinderella and her Prince in a 
quick two hours, even with two more songs from other Richard 
Rodgers shows added to pad out the stage version. 

The show borrows a bit from Disney's "The Lion King" by using 
bunraku-type puppets for the cute little mice and cat who are 
Cinderella's friends; and it brings on its cast in full wedding 
ceremony costume for a snappy happy finale. 

Otherwise, its scenery and special effects, though not 
unattractive, are relatively routine in size and technique. 

The score by Rodgers and lyricist Oscar Hammerstein II is 
pleasant enough, but it is often reminiscent of other 
tunes. "Impossible," for example, sounds like a barely reworked 
version of "I Whistle a Happy Tune" from "The King and I." 

Of the rest, there is one well-known number, Cinderella's "In My 
Own Little Corner," and one of the added songs, "The Sweetest 
Sounds" from Rodgers' 1962 musical "No Strings," is also 

Though not large in number, the cast has been chosen with some 

Eartha Kitt, the show's nominal star, has only a few scenes as 
the Fairy Godmother, but she uses her trademark growling voice, 
insidious laugh and prolonged caressing of consonants to make 
the most out of her small bit. "I'm your fairy godmother," she 
tells a startled Cinderella. "You got a problem with that?" 

Deborah Gibson, looking about the same as she did in her teen 
queen days as Debbie Gibson, sings the songs sweetly, with a bit 
of a soft rock touch in some of the arrangements by Andrew 

Her handsome, able Prince, nicely blending with her in their 
romantic duets, is Paolo Montalban, who performed the same role 
in the 1997 TV movie. 

In the supporting rainbow cast, the expert off-Broadway actor 
Everett Quinton, topped with an outrageous red wig, amusingly 
continues the stage tradition of having the wicked stepmother 
portrayed by a man in drag. 

The buffoonish daughters are the lean, giggling Alexandra Kolb 
and the tubby, itching NaTasha Yvette Williams. 

Two Broadway musical veterans, Ken Prymus as the stolid King and 
Leslie Becker as the fluttery Queen, are the Prince's comic 

Victor Trent Cook is the court's funky steward. 

Gabriel Barre has directed with broad strokes, and Ken Roberson 
has created the modest choreography.