ВСË О ЗОЛУШКЕ (ALL ABOUT CINDERELLA) | Moscow, Musical Theatre

This new musical “for older children” boasts a cracking, polka-led score (Raimonds Pauls) and absurdist, eye-popping costumes (Olga-Mariya Tumakova), all brought to life by a double cast (in rotation) and video projections (Evgeniy Golovin) to give Cinderella a decidedly modern, twisted feel.

The 2014 musical claims to offer an edgy take on the classic fairytale, having “brushed off the sugar and fairy dust” in a manner similar to Broadway’s Wicked or PC game American McGee’s Alice; but that’s not quite true. The Wicked Step-Mother (Anna Guchenkova) is still wicked, Cinderella (Elizabeta Paschenko) still falls in love with a starry-eyed prince (Stanislav Belyaev), and they all live happily ever after.

However, Cinderella’s chorus of life-size mice, dressed in turn-of-the-century polka dot suits, adds an enjoyably disturbing aesthetic, as do the guests of the Prince’s Ball, dressed in chairs, and a crotchety, unhelpful Fairy Godmother (Oksana Kostetskaya). Overall though, this new version isn’t even as dark as the original Charles Perrault: no feet or eye mutilation here.

Non Russian-speaking audiences should be prepared for no subtitles, but children of all ages will delight in this visually engaging, musical take on the classic.

Tickets 500-5000 Roubles (£6.50-£65). Playing until 25 February 2018.

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