Cinderella is a fun kick and a holler.

Antonette Bracks has the lead role in the African American Shakespeare Company production of CINDERELLA.

CINDERELLA Buriel Clay Theater at the African American Art & Culture Complex 762 Fulton Street (at Webster), San Francisco, CA.1-800-838-3006 or visit Plays through December 18, 2011

Cinderella is a fun kick and a holler.

If you are looking for a great holiday treat for your youngsters and a barrel of fun for yourself, get thee hence to the San Francisco’s African-American Shakespeare Company’s (AAFC) production of Cinderella at the Buriel Clay Theater at the African American Art & Cultural Center. Sherri Young, AAFC’s Executive Director, announced that this the 10th year anniversary this show has graced the boards and each year it has gotten better and better.

I cannot vouch for her accolade but I can tell you that this production is an enjoyable evening that even had my jaded guest in stitches and clapping at the right times. Yes, there is a modicum of professional talent but that deficiency is overshadowed by the infectious enthusiasm of the cast. It even includes audience participation as the Duke (E. “Alx”Alexander ) and his young sidekick try to find the proper foot to fit the glass slipper amongst audience members! Yes, no foot was found in the audience but rest assured the right (or was it left) foot of Cinderella fit (pardon the pun) the bill. . I meant the shoe!

It all begins when two rather rowdy young girls fight over a single doll and are taken in tow by the charming Grandmother (Belinda Sullivan) who proceeds to tell Cinderella’s (Antonette Bracks) sad tale with the happy ending. Grandma even gets to become Cinderella’s Fairy Godmother decking her out in a gorgeous white ball gown and creating a beautiful carriage for her trip to the palace.

Before all that happens we meet the nasty Evil step-mother (Marjorie Crump-Shears) and her two Evil daughters (Martin Grizzell & James Martin). No that is not a typo. Martin and James create the ugliest Evil step-sisters you will ever see. But those two pros also steal many of the laughs and there are many, many laughs throughout the short 95 minute evening that will leave you wanting for more.

Handsome David Moore as Prince Charming has a regal presence to match the beauty of Antonette Bracks. Our little scullery maid is not the only transformation to greet the eye. The Royal Masquerade Ball is populated with four attractive couples dressed to the nines who perform admirably under the direction of choreographer Patrik Gallineaux.

Needless to say virtue is rewarded and evil vanquished before the curtain descends. They didn’t really say so but I guess the goodie, goodie two shoes guys/girls live happily ever after and the evil sisters learn how to be scullery maids.

Note: The young talents in this show are not credited and change from night to night.

Kedar K. Adour, MD

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