One Month until Once Upon a One More Time

Once Upon a One More Time is a jukebox musical comedy that reimagines popular songs by Britney Spears into a feminist storybook realm. The plot follows various fairy-tale characters as they undergo a feminist awakening, realizing that their happiness and success do not solely rely on a prince charming’s kiss or rescue. As the musical approaches its opening night on Broadway in May, let’s take a closer look at the development and production of this musical.

The Synopsis

Once Upon a One More Time follows Cinderella, Snow White, The Little Mermaid, Sleeping Beauty, Rapunzel, and Princess and the Pea as they attend a reading group for fairy-tale princesses. Cinderella, desperate for a new story, makes a wish that is granted by a fairy godmother, who introduces them to The Feminine Mystique. The book emboldens the group, and they gain a new perspective on themselves, discovering that waiting to be rescued by a prince charming is not the only way to achieve happiness and success.

The Development

Work on the musical was announced in May 2017, and a year later, Britney Spears attended the first reading. James L. Nederlander, the theater owner, announced that the musical would be staged by Broadway In Chicago at the Nederlander Theatre in late fall 2019, with a transfer to New York City. However, the opening was delayed due to the Covid-19 pandemic.

The Productions

Chicago (2020)

The musical was initially scheduled to premiere on October 29, 2019, in Chicago, but it was postponed to the following year. The premiere was then scheduled for April 14, 2020, and was supposed to run until May 17, with previews in New York in June and a Broadway opening in July. Unfortunately, the show was canceled due to the pandemic.

Washington DC (2021)

The musical’s world premiere run resumed after the pandemic at the Shakespeare Theatre Company in Washington DC, from November 30, 2021, to January 3, 2022, at Sidney Harman Hall. Due to subsequent demand for tickets, the show’s engagement was extended to January 9 and became the top-selling show in the company’s 35-year history. The musical’s opening night received positive reviews from critics, praising the cast’s energetic performances and the clever and timely script.

The Future of Once Upon a One More Time

The musical’s opening night on Broadway is expected to take place on May 19, 2023, at the Marquis Theatre. The musical has been highly anticipated and is expected to be a success with its unique spin on Britney Spears’ music and feminist themes.

In a 2021 interview, Briga Heelan spoke about the show’s exploration of the stories we pass on and their effect on the aspirations of listeners. She said, “Our show speaks to the legacy and the history of these princess stories.” Justin Guarini added that the musical is an emotional journey, a beautiful story of discovery and redemption, and that it marries cherished songs with a new set of ideas and concepts.

As the musical’s opening night approaches, fans and critics alike eagerly anticipate the next chapter in Once Upon a One More Time’s story.

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