Combining slapstick humor with a modern political and social storyline, Bootless Stageworks’ musical production of “Disenchanted” provides a rambunctious and progressive take on the classic Disney fairytales.
The story is told from the perspective of our favorite Disney princesses who have become, well, disenchanted with their fates in movies, books and the like.
The story is driven along by strong performances from Snow White, Sleeping Beauty, and Cinderella. As the show goes on, we are introduced to the princesses Mulan, Pocahontas, Ariel, Belle, Badroulbadour (whom we know as Jasmine), Tiana, and Rapunzel. Each of the princesses shares their discontent and stories vary, showing us how each princess is not in the fairytale that Disney-goers are led to believe.
While the plot seems a little discombobulated at times, each princess receives time to share her problems in a humorous fashion. The smooth voice of Snow White (Meg Falasco) leads the charge on explaining the main plot points such as the ‘princess complex,’ which is the stereotype in which all of the princesses are damsels in distress who do nothing but scream at the first sign of danger. She also explains the mystery around the fact that all of the princesses seem to have “Big Tits” (yes, that is a song in the show and yes, it is hilarious). Snow White brings each of the princesses together for an uplifting message of unity at the culmination of the show.
Cinderella, played by Alecia Alaimo, portrays the ditsy, cookie-cutter princess who seems to be the mold that most princesses were modeled after. At first, it seems like Alaimo has been assigned a derogatory role. But she proves to have wit and spunk, and her performance is uproariously funny, especially during “All I Wanna Do Is Eat.”
As for Sleeping Beauty (Samantha McNerney), well, she lives up to her name through most of the show. When she finally wakes and gets her chance in the spotlight, she relays a very poignant message about self confidence and how she is happy with who she is.
The princesses in the show are not ‘figuratively’ portrayed in the vein that Walt might have imagined. But their appearance supports their point — that they are none too happy with the exploitation they’ve suffered at the hands of Disney animators in creating the perfect princess beauty.
Overall, this show is a rousing new take on the archaic (both in times and views) tales as old as time and left the audience in stitches, tears, or some combination of the two by the end of the performance.