Cinderella Preview

Bringing the magic of a princess story to BHS

Ivy Muench, Co-Editor in Chief

Cinderella is revamped in this modern take on the classic tale. While Ella, nicknamed Cinderella, is known to be a damsel in distress, this production portrays her as a strong female, taking charge of her life and her choices.

The version playing at Brighton High School is the modernized version of Rodgers and Hammerstein’s Cinderella, lastly modified in 2013 for Broadway. Along with a few name modifications, the protagonist, Ella, makes a lot of strong choices and brings awareness to Prince Charming.

“Every show is its own animal,” said teacher, Co-Director and Choreographer Michelle Holowicki. She noted that this production has had less set choreography than Newsies did last year but there are complications in terms of logistics and performing all that is written in the music, such as the pumpkin’s transformation into a carriage. 

This process began last year when the Musical’s Creative Team, composed of M. Holowicki, Co-Director Phil Johnson, Assistant Choreographer Emilia St. Onge, Acting Director Sonja Marquis, Costuming Kristine Stuenkel, BCPA Manager Ken Balazovich, Technical Director Josh Holowicki, went to watch Cinderella at Fox Theatre in Downtown Detroit to see if this was the musical they wanted to do.

At first, M. Holowicki was turned off by the idea because the “costuming is so complicated and extravagant.” She didn’t want to require so much from the costuming department. For example, the costuming team had to make ballroom gowns using old homecoming and prom dresses and hoop skirts. However, Stuenkel was super excited for the challenge. Another perk that grabbed the group’s attention is that this musical has multiple strong female roles, including Ella, Marie (fairy godmother) and the step family.

There is a bit of a time crunch this year compared to last year. Three-year-Musical cast/crew member Emma Tousignant said, “We are actually behind compared to where we were for Newsies last year. By this time for Newsies, we had already run through the show completely.”

Last Thursday, Musical began run-throughs of each act and Saturday, Feb. 1 was the first full day rehearsal (14 hours at the BCPA rehearsing). A more rehearsal-filled schedule is yet to come as the musical comes to the showcasing date. Last year, Newsies’s first show was on March 10 while Cinderella’s first showing is on Feb. 21, giving them less time to prepare and to do as much work in a shorter period of time. 

However, BHS is on track to give a spotless performance on show nights.

“Either it be a musician or someone who is on stage, even the pit chorus, just the raw talent of the cast as a whole is the most astonishing thing,” said Tousignant. “If you take away all of the… pretty aspects… you still have that singing talent and dancing talent that other theater programs don’t have.” With 105 students participating in Cinderella, it can be hard to keep track of everyone’s tasks. But, put everyone’s efforts together and the audience gets a performance full of magic and quality. 

A new development this year BHS Musical Theater plans on merging themselves a bit into Kindness Week. One of the main morals of Ella is promoting kindness, and that is exactly what Kindness Week is about.

Cinderella has been selling tickets since Black Friday. Students are able to buy tickets online around 700 seats ahead of last year. Tickets cost $15 per student, $17 for adults/seniors, and $40 for the Red Carpet Gala night. Go to the BHS Musical Theater website to buy tickets today or learn more about Cinderella.