The beloved stage and TV star will play the Magic Mirror, opposite Star Trek: The Next Generation actress Marina Sirtis, in the festive production. Sirtis will play the Wicked Queen.
The show will feature choreography from Dancing With the Stars professional Mark Ballas and will run at the El Portal Theater from 30 November to 18 December.
The production follows the success of Cinderella at the same theatre last Christmas. That pantomime featured Leave it to Beaver child star Jerry Mathers, Broadway sensation Jennifer Leigh Warren and Harry Potter actor Cormac McLaggen.
Harris helped producer Nigel Lythgoe pick Cinderella from open auditions last year.
Of course we were beside ourselves to think we would be sitting in a room with Jerry "Beaver Cleaver" Mathers. But we were also honored to talk to Harry Potter actor Freddie Stroma, Broadway star Jennifer Leigh Warren, newcomer Veronica Dunne, and stand out actors from the production Benny Harris and Eddie Driscoll.
They were all very excited to be involved in the U.S.'s first performance of a Panto, which incorporates current references, contemporary music and broad (oftentimes double entendre heavy) humor into a classic fairy tale. They told us that it took some getting used to for the
We are not what you would call fans of audience participation. In fact when we hear the words we usually run in the other direction. But there's something about the Lythgoe Family Productions' version of Cinderella that had us cheering from our seats and calling out "Hello But'ons" whenever Benny Harris took to the stage. The musical extravaganza, now playing at the El Portal Theatre, is a British Panto version of the classic children's story.
The star-studded fare is produced by So You Think You Can Dance's Nigel Lythgoe, along with his wife Bonnie (the director) and son Kris (the playwright). The choreography comes courtesy of Dancing With the Star's Mark Ballas.
Headlining the cast is Jerry Mathers (of Leave it to Beaver fame) as Cinderella's father Baron Hardup, who lost all his money to Bernie Madoff. Freddie Stroma, who played Cormac McLaggen in
American Idol producer Nigel Lythgoe is the brains behind the show, which will also feature Leave it to Beaver child star Jerry Mathers and Broadway sensation Jennifer Leigh Warren, and Dancing with the Stars professional Mark Ballas will choreograph.
The lead has yet to be announced. After months of searching California, the producers have selected 30 hopefuls who will attempt to impress celebrity judges Stroma, who plays Cormac McLaggen in the last two Potter films, and Neil Patrick Harris next week.
Their pick will play Cinderella when the show opens at the historic El Portal Theatre in the San Fernando Valley at the end of November.
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