Reviews for "The Princess and the Pea"
2008 Edmonton Fringe Festival
Princess and the Pea Pleases(Edmonton Journal Fringe Review- 3.5 stars)
You'd have to be a miserable old far to find fault with the Princess and the Pea, a children's musical by Edmonton company, Dramatic Learning, starring a cast of kids ages 14 and under. The 60 minute show offers endearing precocious performances during princess auditions, numerous bride rejects and a very tense dinner conversation featuring - you guessed it- peas. The cute factor plays a major role in this show's success, but frankly, we don't mind. Even if it's not our little darling on that stage, we're bewitched by this energetic bunch. Picky Queen Minerva is fabulous and haughty, King Reginald smokes a mean pipe and Prince Nichlas is about as dashing as a bachelor can get. If only his controlling mom would let him marry a princess. If only!
Reviews for "Return of the Glass Slipper"
2006 Edmonton Fringe Festival
Kids Supply Happy Ending
(Edmonton Journal Fringe Review- 4 stars)
If it had been left up to me, I would NOT have been at The Return of the Glass Slipper, an adaptation of the Cinderella story. The idea of a troupe of children with voices ranging from the merely thin to the constantly off-key is enough to make a man of certain years head for the nearest beer tent. Kids theatre can be like a teeth cleaning--not fatal, but painful as all get out. More often than not, it should be attended only by those who have progeny in the production, leaving the rest of us out of it. But I was assigned to The Return of the Glass Slipper, grumbled about like Rumpelstiltskin on a bas day, and set off. And in an ending that was purely happily-ever-after, I was completely won over by this spirited play and its cast of engaging, energetic young performers who played their parts with a witty wink at the conventions of the traditional fairy tale. There are some truly fine and funny performances to be seen here, and some chorus line work that's surprisingly accomplished from singers and dancers, the oldest of whom, I suspect, would be no older than early teens. Full marks, too, to directors Alyson Connolly and Elaine Dunbar and their technical crew for clever staging and set design. And there are some notable and well-delivered tunes as well, including one entitled This Generation Is Not Like It Should Be that's a hoot. Don't a grump like some people, see this show. Marc Horton
See Magazine (3.5 Stars)
The Return of the Glass Slipper is a musical that bring Cinderella into the 21st Century. This is a great piece to introduce young newcomers to the theatre or to remind seasoned audiences of the power of imagination. The fairy godmother of yesterday has lost her tutu in favour of a "groovy" t-shirt and purple pants. She goes by Harmonia now and brings backup singing fairies with her (hip hop music and dancing figure prominently in this version). These young thespians make magical theatre, creating fountains and fireplaces with only a few stage blocks and actors with yards of fabric. Using minimal props and costumes they create trumpeters and fairies, castles and market-places, with ease and clarity. Cinderella has found a true home in this modern musical. Leah Anderson
VUE Magazine (3.5 Stars)
This funky, modern day musical is performed for kids by kids. They come from Dramatic Learning, a company devoted to educating young artists. In an exuberant hour of fun, dance and laughter, they turn this familiar story upside down. (For example, the usually frilly, effeminate fairy godmother here has a fetish for sixties music and suddenly bursts into a dance routine to Deep Purple.) The young performers occasionally lack polish and voice projection, but what they lack in experience they make up in infectious enthusiasm and boundless energy. (AM)