'Cinderella' arrives in Manila ball

A CLASSIC TALE OF LOVE AND KINDNESS. Rodgers and Hammerstein's version of the well-loved classic gets some Filipino flavor this October.

MANILA, Philippines - Cinderella is one of the most well-told fairy tales and this has inspired numerous versions.

Though Cinderella's name varies in each country, similar themes remain: the fairy godmother, the now-iconic slipper, and the happy ending that caps all the heroine's hardships.

Here are some of the most popular versions of the well-loved story:

Chinese version:

Ye-Shen's story was first published in the 9th century. Her mother who has died is reincarnated as a fish that becomes her fairy godmother, helping her dress up for the New Year Festival.

She leaves behind a golden slipper which eventually makes its way to a king who is fascinated by its small size. He searches for her and eventually makes her his queen.

The Brothers Grimm version:

The German storytellers Jacob and Wilhelm Grimm wrote the story of a girl nicknamed by her stepsisters as "Aschenputtel" which means "Ashfool."

Help for Aschenputtel comes from a wishing tree that grew beside her mother's grave, and in the ball that lasts three nights, she leaves a golden shoe in the last night of the feast after dancing with and making the prince fall in love with her.

The prince eventually finds her and marries her.

Charles Perrault's version:

Published in 1697, Charles Perrault's version includes the popular additions we find in the Walt Disney film, such as the pumpkin that turns into a carriage and the glass slipper. This is also the version where her animal friends are turned into her formidable party of valets.

Filipino version:

Filipino folklore has a similar tale entitled "Mariang Alimango," which is quite similar to the Chinese version. But in this story, Maria's dead mother is reincarnated as a crab that serves as her fairy godmother, and eventually Maria triumphs over her abusive stepmother and stepsisters.

There have been many adaptations of "Cinderella" in theater. It first debuted as a pantomime in London.

The version by the immortal team of Richard Rodgers and Oscar Hammerstein first ran in 1958 at the London Coliseum, with Betty Marsden playing the role of the Fairy Godmother and Pamella Guard as Cinderella.

The Rodgers and Hammerstein "Cinderella" has been produced worldwide through the years.

This is the "Cinderella" we will see here in Manila, enhanced by the highly appealing "K-lan" pair of Karylle and Christian Bautista.

Resorts World Manila's Chief Entertainment Officer Colin Kerr said this production will be their most expensive to date.

This is familiar territory for an enterprise noted for its revitalization of the classics, such as "The King and I."

As Resorts World Manila enthused in its website, the "K-lan" (from the Filipino for "when") pair will be in "their most romantic stage affair yet." Expect the "kilig" to be intensified in this production. Christian promises "the kiss will be longer."

"Something that we're going into for 'Cinderella' is to make it unique," said Kerr. "Also, to give people value for their money: the magical element. That is the wow factor of the show."

With so many versions of the well-loved fairy tale, the challenge lies in making each production fresh.

"What we're gonna do this time that we've never done is we're not gonna drop the curtain at all during the show so there will be set changes," said the CEO.

"All set changes will be like a storybook. This sounds simple but it's a super hard challenge."

Whichever version of the fairy tale readers in different parts of the world are accustomed to, the moral story remains: that it's the good people who reap the rewards in the end. Children of all ages find a role model in Cinderella. - Rappler.com

Here's a clip of the rehearsal:

'Cinderella' will be shown at the New Performing Arts Theater starting October 9. For more details, visit www.rwmanila.com