Sir Andrew Lloyd Webber has had hit after hit with “Phantom of the Opera,” “Cats,” “Evita,” and other musicals that have been incredibly popular despite dreadful reviews.
But with “Bad Cinderella,” his 13th musical, ALW may have met his Waterloo. The new musical opened last night in New York to howls of horrors, the worst reviews of Lloyd-Webber’s career. Ten out of thirteen reviewers panned it on the website DidTheyLikeIt.com including the New York Times. Only review was considered positive.
In the four weeks “Bad Cinderella” has been in previews, the box office has not been very good. The average take has been around $650,000. With scathing reviews, it wouldn’t seem possible to stay open much longer.
“Bad Cinderella” originally played in London as just “Cinderella.” It received scathing reviews there. Lloyd-Webber shut it down in 2021 without much notice, bringing on tons of criticism about how he handled it. He said he regretted the show completely. Then this reconfigured version of it with a new cast was announced for Broadway.
Meanwhile, “Phantom” is getting ready to end its 30 year Broadway run. The show is selling out as hardcore fans, many of whom may not understand English, bid it goodbye.
It’s a bitter moment for the incredibly successful writer of songs like “Memory” and “Don’t Cry for Me Argentina.” He turned 75 this week but had to miss the New York opening “Bad Cinderella” as his eldest son, Nick, 43, is in hospice in London diagnosed with stomach cancer and pneumonia.