Production completely scrapped because of ‘whiteness’
A theater in Minnesota has completely scrapped production of treasured children’s classic Cinderella and fire their staff because “it was 98% white.”
Chanhassen Dinner Theatres announced they “made the decision to cancel our upcoming production of Rodgers and Hammerstein’s ‘Cinderella’” on Monday.
The theater added:
We hope of “beginning the production process again with a new title will allow us to put into practice an intentional process based on the work we have been doing towards equity and inclusivity.”
A follow-up announcement clarified:
“Just to be clear, we believe unapologetically in the changes we are making, and we believe that all of our kind-hearted guests will follow us on this journey.”
“We did not cancel Cinderella because of content.”
“We are looking forward to bringing it to our stage in the future.”
“But we as a company decided our original casting didn’t go far enough in our commitment, and instead of waiting another full year to implement these important changes, we chose now.”
Artistic director Michael Brindisi said the decision was made after realizing the cast of the production was “98% white.”
“That doesn’t work with what we’re saying we’re going to do,” Brindisi said.
He also noted the theater hired diversity consultant Kelli Foster Warder to help “foster these moves.”
Although Brindisi considered recasting, he ultimately decided to “scrap this and start fresh with a clean slate.”
He admitted some of the actors were disappointed, “but everyone to a person said they got it and that they respected the very hard decision we had to make.”
The Daily Mail noted that finding a diverse cast might be a challenge due to the theater pulling actors from Chanhassen, southwest of Minneapolis.
The population of Chanhassen “is overwhelmingly white, and the racial demographics of the cast were not strikingly different from the city as a whole,” the outlet added.
The Mail added that “according to the most recent census, 92.5 percent of people in Chanhassen are white. Less than 3 percent of residents are Hispanic, while 1.1 percent are black.”
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ARTICLE SOURCE: newsthud.com