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CNN:

Thursday night’s celebration of the 30th anniversary of the animated classic “Beauty and the Beast,” which aired on ABC, had a loud and sometimes confusing order. during the making of the film, and parts of the original film were strategically used to bridge gaps in the story. The network bites off more than it can chew. A tale as old as time, one can say.

Fortunately, the artists at the center of the live performances and dance numbers brought the show to life in a way that brought the castle’s treasured magic to the stage in a vibrant display that more than properly paid homage to the beloved 1991 film.

The live elements of the show, especially the deft dance pieces like the one where the performers mimicked the movements of petals falling from an enchanted rose, and iconic musical numbers like “Be Our Guest” could easily stand alone and if you wanted to at any point, that they could, you are not alone.

Perhaps it was a testament to the casting: David Alan Grier as a suitably salty Cogsworth, Martin Short as Lumiere, Shania Twain as Mrs Potts; live shows that preceded it.

But the biggest credit has to go to HER, Josh Groban and the outstanding Joshua Henry as Belle, the Beast and Gaston respectively.

The male leads didn’t surprise anyone with their moments. Groban stood out most with his performance of “If I Can’t Love Her” from the film’s stage version, and Henry showed off his powerful vocals on “The Mob Song” in a way that makes you wish someone was that smart. : how to cast him in a 2017 movie.

But it was HE who went against tradition the guitar shredding moment at the end of the show, which gave audiences the risk they needed to push this show out of the powerful animated shadow and transport Bell to 2022 in a way we deserve more of.

If that’s what Disney has in store for the upcoming iterations of the princess, be our guest.

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