The King’s Theatre Glasgow – until 16 June 2018
Reviewed by Linda McLaughlan
‘A fresh look at a fairy tale story through the one of the darkest era’s of London’s history’
We all know the fairytale of Cinderella told through the generations by our parents and grandparents. The story of a fairy godmother you rescues Cinderella from her dreary existence and you helps her find her true love in the arms of the her Prince. Well, Mathew Bourne helps us see this fairytale in a new light.
The London Blitz was a time of mass destruction during the war with many buildings destroyed by the Ger-man bombing and thousands of lives lost and families torn apart. But still the undercurrent of British strength and determination carried on with many people determined to carry on through the darkest of times and get on with their lives as best they could.
Mathew Bourne’s production takes us through the dreary life of Cinderella at the hands of her step-mother and her equally horrible step brothers and sisters. We get to see the wonderfully talented Ashley Shaw (Cinderella) dream of glamour and escapism from her life when she tries on her step mothers fur wrap and her own sparkly shoes which she keeps hidden in a box by the fireplace. Her father who is ex military and who has been clearly injured plays a lost looking soul who is now wheelchair bound and at the perils of his wife and her children, watches on helplessly as he struggles with his own demons and cannot protect his daughter or ease her unhappiness.
Then our handsome injured Pilot Harry (played by Dominic North) comes on the scene and both his and Cinderella’s lives are changed as they desperately search for each other through the turmoil of London.
The nightlife of London at the time is highlighted and in some keeping with the fairytale the meeting place for Cinderella to see Harry is the Cafe de Paris. However like the fairytale Cinderella does not have an invite to go so in comes her Angel (Played by Liam Mower), who guides her to find Harry again but not before he takes her through a journey of love and loss, lust and desire.
As with all Mathew Bourne’s productions the ‘normal’ storyline is adapted and twisted and takes you own a rollercoaster ride of intrigue and adventure. This is a production that will leave you wanting more and restore your faith in humanity and love even in the darkest of days.