Andrew Lloyd Webber’s Cinderella musical transferring to Broadway less than a year after West End closure

Andrew Lloyd Webber’s Cinderella musical is transferring to Broadway less than a year after closing in the West End.

Opening at London’s Gillian Lynne Theatre in 2021 after lengthy delays due to the pandemic, Lloyd Webber’s modern-day fairytale starred Carrie Hope Fletcher as the titular outcast-turned-princess. The show closed in June.

On Monday (3 October), Webber announced that Cinderella would be moving to Broadway in February 2023, now under the name Bad Cinderella.

The musical will arrive just as Webber’s The Phantom of the Opera, the longest running show on Broadway, shuts after 35 years.

On Your Feet star and Dear Evan Hansen understudy Linedy Genao will be playing the lead role in Bad Cinderella.

The score was written by Webber, with David Zippel penning the lyrics and Promising Young Woman writer Emerald Fennell writing the book.

In a The Independent’s three-star review of Cinderella, Isobel Lewis wrote that “the production is driven forward by high-camp visuals, incredible comic talent and an electric ensemble cast”.

“But look below the surface – as is Cinderella’s whole message – and you’ll find something more muddled, a show that doesn’t quite know what it’s saying or have the consistent material to support its vision,” she said.

Cinderella’s closure in the UK was surrounded by reports of unrest among the cast.

It was claimed that the current cast members were notified of the cancellation minutes before performing, while some future cast members claimed they only found out via social media.

Webber’s representatives denied these rumours at the time, saying: “The timeline being reported online is not correct. The entire company working yesterday were told in person after the matinee performance.”

Cinderella ran at the Gillian Lynne Theatre in London until June (PA Wire)
Cinderella ran at the Gillian Lynne Theatre in London until June (PA Wire)

Following the news of cancellation, the cast of Cinderella and other actors expressed their anger and disapproval on Twitter. The abrupt cancellation also prompted demands for compensation from Equity, the trade union for performers and creative workers.

During the show’s final performance, a video message from Webber was met with boos after he claimed that the show had been a “costly mistake”.

On Monday (13 June), the composer addressed the backlash to his comment in an Instagram story, writing: “I am devastated to have been reported to have said that my beloved prodcution of Cinderella was a ‘costly mistake’.

“Nothing could be further from the truth, and I am very sorry if my words have been misunderstood.”

Additional reporting by Associated Press.