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Cinderella Gets Her Groove On 

Tuesday, Dec 24 2002
You'd think that after a long day of cooking, cleaning, and dealing with the demands of a divalike stepmom and two domineering stepsisters, at the very least you'd be able to get your dance on. No, this isn't a reference to VH1's Behind the Music episode on Mary J. Blige. This is the African-American Shakespeare Company's version of the timeless Cinderella fairy tale. A classic story of "what's a girl gotta do to get a man" told from a sista's point of view, the AASC's adaptation comes complete with funked-out fairy godmother and thug-life siblings -- think Tupac Shakur in drag.

Unlike Disney's attempt to diversify the story with a multiethnic cast that included Brandy as the damsel in distress and Paolo Montalban as the prince in its 1997 movie, the AASC's Cinderella does for the tale what The Wiz did for The Wizard of Oz. Beyond that, the show doesn't deviate much from the beaten path. Outside of adding some "color" to the historically homogeneous domain of fairyland, this production doesn't take any major chances with the story line.

Still, the AASC's version is a blast, and its efforts to incorporate the audience into the performance by asking the ladies to try on the coveted glass slipper should give kids an extra kick. (Be prepared for comments like, "Mommy's foot was way too big for that slipper.")

So what would happen if a woman -- accidentally, of course -- slipped the shoe onto her foot and it actually fit? Would the troupe offer her to Prince Charming and call it a draw? Well ladies, don't get your hopes too high, as the duke will probably steer clear of any ringers. As anyone over 6 knows, like the Mounties, Cinderella always gets her man.

About The Author

Andrea Renee Goode


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