‘Sanderella’ At PS 114
Through the Rockaway Music and Arts Council Music Program, which is chaired by Myra Berger, the students of PS 114 were treated to the NYC Opera’s production of “Cinderella” early on in the school year.
Now, months later, they and their teachers worked on a modern version of this well-known fairy tale. They changed the title to “Sanderella”—an appropriate change since the story now takes place in the Rockaways.
RMAC members found the auditorium filled to capacity with excited parents, grandparents, siblings, and guests. Some audience members proudly shouted and waved to the performers making their way to the stage. What vitality—what voices—the true exuberance of youth as they came down the aisles!
As they entered the auditorium each audience member was given original programs; truly reflecting our community—sand, sun, waves, and beach umbrellas.
Listed in the program were the names of the entire cast from “Sanderella” to “Time Keeper.” Scene One took place on Beach 129 Street, complete with local store signs, where we first learned that the Prince was giving a ball. Then to Sanderella’s home in Belle Harbor where we meet the Stepmother and Stepsisters, and the comforting Fairy Godmother who changes Sanderella’s rags to a beautiful gown. Then the handsome Prince arrives majestically walking down the aisle gesturing with a princely wave of his hand. He acknowledges his subjects on stage and those in the audience. Two escorts dressed in black and complete with sunglasses accompanied the Prince. The Prince was in all his glory—decked out in a royal robe and crown and carrying a scepter in his hand, on his way to Breezy Point and the gala ball.
The audience watched Sanderella leave her shoe behind as the clock struck midnight. We laughed as her stepsisters grunted and groaned while trying to fit in the tiny slipper and, at last, enjoyed the happy ending with an inspiring song, “We Go Together.”
In the final speech given by Mr. Brian O’Connell, the school’s principal, everyone was thanked profoundly for a fine job well done: the children, teachers, directors, stage and sound managers, and the Rockaway Music and Arts Council. Mr. O’Connell turned to the kids and said, “Wow! You’re all incredible.”