A national Broadway tour of “Cinderella” is coming to the RiverCenter this week.
This particular version is the 2013 Tony Award winning adaptation of the original 1957 musical by Rodgers & Hammerstein. Although the bulk of the original story is still in tact, this show features a new book by Douglas Carter Beane. His adaptation brings critically acclaimed changes to the beloved Rodgers & Hammerstein original. In addition to some new characters, Beane’s version offers audiences a Cinderella that is a heroine on a mission to better her kingdom. Expect to see a Cinderella who is empowered for her cause, not just setting out to marry a prince for happily ever after.
Due to the popularity of this musical, the RiverCenter is offering two evening performances on subsequent days. The shows are expected to draw large crowds and tickets are selling quickly.
Chris Woods is an actor based out of New York City who is currently on tour with this production of “Cinderella.” Woods recently corresponded with arts reporter Carrie Beth Wallace about his role in the production, life on tour and what audience members can expect from the show. The interview has been edited for length and clarity.
Q: How long have you been with this production of “Cinderella” on tour?
A: I’ve been with the production since August of last year.
Q: What role do you play in the production?
A: I play Jean-Michel, a feisty new revolutionary character in this magical retelling of “Cinderella” by critically acclaimed author Douglas Carter Beane.
Q: Do you have a favorite part of the show?
A: My favorite part of the show is The Prince is Giving a Ball scene. I get to cause a raucous on stage and also watch the dancers tear it up every night. ... It pumps me up!
Q: What is the most challenging thing about being on tour?
A: The most challenging part of being on tour is being away from friends and family for long periods of time. The trade off is that you get a new family that you travel with — in very close quarters. Meditation is key.
Q: Have you had any especially memorable performances so far? Why did that performance stand out for you?
A: One of the most memorable performances was a student matinee in Baltimore. The 10 a.m. shows are tough, but when those kids roared with laughter and applause it shook the Hippodrome Theatre. We felt like rock stars!
Q: What is it like to work with this particular cast and crew?
A: It’s wonderful to work with a team of people on this tour that truly cares about our show’s message: kindness. There are so many personalities on stage, backstage, in the orchestra pit, and we get to watch each other do what we do best. I love watching and learning from these people.
Q: How do you maintain good health on tour?
A: I like to keep up with my workouts on tour because we are very active in this production. I personally would like to thank Mark Fisher Fitness in New York City for all of the burpees, push-ups, foam rolling and absolute foolishness that keeps me inspired.
Q: Anything else you’d like for our readers to know?
A: Buy your tickets now!
If you go
When: 7:30 p.m. June 21 and June 22
Where: RiverCenter for the Performing Arts, 900 Broadway