A clever and charming Broadway musical, Once Upon A One More Time pays homage to the Brothers Grimm, second-wave feminists, and the indomitable Britney Spears. Directed and choreographed by Keone & Mari Madrid, the show is a Technicolor confection. He cleverly plays dumb at times while making poignant points. The performances are splendid to say the least. Justin Guarini and a talented ensemble made notable appearances.
Britney Spears does not appear in the musical, but her spirit and tenacity are “peppered throughout the production.” The songs, fully licensed and licensed by Britney after her tutelage, add a lovely touch to the show. The musical numbers captivated the audience with their levitation charm.
The premise of Once Upon a One More Time is not something you haven’t seen. It has a group of fairy tale characters such as Cinderella, Snow White, Sleeping Beauty, Rapunzel, among others. The infusion of modern sensibilities gives this show its unique identity. The inclusion of Betty Friedan’s The Feminine Mystique highlights the evolution of these characters. It records his desire to have more than the traditional narrative.
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Briga Heelan brings depth and curiosity to the character of Cinderella. The overall experience is enhanced by the minimalist setting, pulsing lights, storybook video projections, and clever costume designs. Through their choreography, the Madrileños reinvent classic Spears videos and boy band routines. The mix of athleticism and grace is almost perfect.
Once Upon a One More Time features an all-star cast. Aisha Jackson stands out as Snow White. Justin Guarini as Prince Charming, Adam Godley as the sexist narrator and Jennifer Simard as the wicked stepmother have played their roles beyond reproach. Simard’s comedic timing is impeccable and her performance adds a delightful touch to the show.
Once Upon a One More Time offers a happy ending, one that is in line with 21st century sensibilities. It offers many surprises and treats along the way. This enchanting musical is designed to win hearts with its clever playing infused with contagious energy.