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The History of Rodgers + Hammerstein’s Cinderella

Though the story of Cinderella has in some form been around for centuries, the development of Rodgers + Hammerstein’s version of the beloved tale brings Broadway magic.

After the live televised version of Peter Pan in the 50s, CBS was seeking a musical success story for their network in the form of a stunning live production.

Photo by Carol Rosegg. Rodgers + Hammerstein’s CINDERELLA tour company

Photo by Carol Rosegg.
Rodgers + Hammerstein’s CINDERELLA tour company

There are several versions of how the negotiations came to be, but CBS and Julie Andrews took a beautiful creation by Rodgers + Hammerstein and started what would become one of the most magical live experiences; one that would soon be shared around the globe in touring productions like the one arriving at the Fox Cities Performing Arts Center this March!

Here’s a snapshot of how the musical came to be:

 

 

March 31, 1957 – The original televised musical airs on CBS starring Julie Andrews as Cinderella. It was filmed at the first color studio in New York and  seen by over 100 million viewers (about 60% of the US population at that time). It was later nominated for 2 Emmy® Awards.

December 18, 1958 – A limited engagement stage premiere at the London Coliseum was held.

Photo by Carol Rosegg. Kaitlyn Davidson from the Rodgers + Hammerstein’s CINDERELLA tour

Photo by Carol Rosegg.
Kaitlyn Davidson from the Rodgers + Hammerstein’s CINDERELLA tour

February 22, 1965 – The first televised remake of the original aired on CBS, introducing Lesley Ann Warren as Cinderella with Richard Rodgers as Executive producer. This version was seen by over 22 million households.

1993, 1995 & 2004 – New York City Opera staged versions of Rodgers + Hammerstein’s Cinderella, keeping the story alive for a new generation of theater go-ers.

November 2, 1997 – In 1997, Walt Disney Productions released a remake of Rodgers + Hammerstein’s Cinderella starring Brandy as Cinderella. The Disney production was applauded for its diversity in casting; the royal family was comprised of an African-American mother, a Caucasian father and an Asian-American Prince. This innovative choice showed the universality of the story, continuing to make it accessible to more audiences and had great success, with about 60 million viewers tuning in.

March 3, 2013 – The stage version of Rodgers + Hammerstein’s Cinderella debuted on Broadway for the first time ever, featuring a new book by Douglas Carter Beane and direction by Mark Brokaw.

2014- present – The national tour travels around the country to share the magical tale and remind audiences that glass slippers are so back.

Tickets for Rodgers + Hammerstein’s Cinderella start at $45 and go on sale Dec. 4 at 10 a.m.

 

 

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