Andrew Lloyd Webber's Cinderella reopens in the West End – Broadway-bound Belleville is back in London
The multi-award-nominated musical plays on
Pandemic-induced delays, triumphant reopening, talk of suing the government, show amendments – the recent history of Andrew Lloyd Webber, Emerald Fennell and David Zippel's new musical Cinderella will one day make a riveting stage show all of its own.
After closing down again in December, the show is now back at its boisterous best, with the town of Belleville laying out its lavish ball once more at the Gillian Lynne Theatre, complete with revolving stage and romantic romp.
Lloyd Webber himself stepped out onto the stage to greet the first audience of 2022, making remarks about anagrams involving Covid variants and the inadequacies of the current government to an eager audience.
He stated that the closure gave the company time to take stock, rejig a few little bits (director Laurence Connor said in the foyer before the show that there had been some tinkering, including a phallic surprise at the opening of the show) and generally have a breather after the intense paranoia and precarity of 2021.
The production looks set to leave the Covid uncertainty behind as it strides into the new year – not only with a raft of WhatsOnStage Awards nominations but, just as tantalisingly, the ever-growing rumblings of a Broadway staging of the show – hinted at by Lloyd Webber himself last autumn and then backed up by news of a casting call released last month. Concrete details will probably be revealed soon.
In the meantime, the show, led by WhatsOnStage Award nominees Carrie Hope Fletcher, Ivano Turco, Rebecca Trehearn and Victoria Hamilton-Barritt, is comfortably back in action – a sure sign of a West End gunning to reach rude health over the coming months.