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Cinderella Walzes Past Cliches

Wootton Theater

For the last few weeks, Wootton student Ross Godwin has repeatedly dropped classmate Mitch Lerner on his head.

“He’s okay with it, because it’s part of the script,” said Godwin.

Godwin’s and Lerner’s stunt is part of "Cinderella Waltz," which Wootton High School will perform Dec. 5-7.

Director Madeleine Tierney, an English teacher at Wootton, chose a play that takes a twist on conventional, feel-good storylines.

“It’s a wacky comedy; there’s no serious stuff in it,” said Lerner. “It parodies the Disney ‘Cinderella' — especially if you don’t like that, you should see this.”

“When you look deeper into the plot, you realize it’s so much more than a Cinderella story,” said senior Ashley Houghton, who stars as Rosey Snow, a quasi-Cinderella, in her eighth Wootton play. “It’s a show about surprises. You realize the prince is actually very similar to the village idiot.”

“[Rosey’s] not really in love with the prince; she’s in love with the idea of the prince,” said sophomore Frank Cervarich.

CLAIRE STEIN, a sophomore, plays Mother Magee, a character Stein describes as “a fairy godmother [and] a very old ex-prostitute. … She thinks she can still get the guys, but no one wants her. … She wants the prince; she wants the happy ending.”

“He’s not as dumb as he looks,” said Cervarich of his character, Zed, the village idiot. “In Act One he stutters and mutters and can’t really form a sentence. … He changes a lot from Act One to Act Two.”

“The challenge [of my role] is being a prince while also being an idiot at the same time,” said Godwin, who plays Prince Alf. “He relates to the village idiot; he’s a doofus.”

Lerner, who plays Troll, the prince’s servant, said, “I’m a lost person. I’ve fallen down in their well, and I’m just very air-headed.”

“CINDERELLA WALTZ” mocks the fairy-tale notion that there is a handsome prince out there who will solve all your problems, said Tierney.

“This one ends a lot differently. Sometimes what you’re looking for is right there in front of you. … I think that rings true for a lot of high school students.”

Wootton’s Center for Performing Arts advises parental discretion, as “Cinderella Waltz" contains adult situations.