Cinderella at the Theater of Potatoes | Den Theatre | Theater & Performance | Chicago Reader
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click to enlarge Elle Walker, Leslie Ann Sheppard, Amanda Martinez, and Aja Wiltshire in Cinderella at the Theater of Potatoes

Elle Walker, Leslie Ann Sheppard, Amanda Martinez, and Aja Wiltshire in Cinderella at the Theater of Potatoes

Joe Mazza

Cinderella at the Theater of Potatoes 

When: Fridays-Sundays. Continues through Jan. 8 2017
Price: $36, $15 children
Picking up where Redmoon Theater's old winter pageants left off (and the House Theatre's Nutcracker keeps on keeping on), this new Hypocrites show retrofits a classic fairy tale for the sensibilities of 21st-century progressives. Adapter Andra Velis Simon has taken Pauline Viardot-García's Cendrillon—a belle epoque chamber-operetta version of the Cinderella story—and stripped away such backward elements as charmed mice and handsome princes. In their place she gives us a narrative in which talent will out, true sisterhood is powerful, and "extraordinary things are possible when ordinary people help each other." The forward-thinking maxims get a little much, tending to come in a flurry toward the end, and Sean Graney's brightly costumed 85-minute staging can tip over from the festive into the twee at times, but the songs and voices are strong (particularly that of Amanda Martinez, well cast as Cinderella) and the spirit overall is as affable as it is positive. —Tony Adler

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