A dinner theater company based in Minnesota cancelled one of its upcoming “Cinderella” production because the cast was too white.
Chanhassen Dinner Theatres claimed that the reason it cancelled the play was that the cast did not meet its commitment to “equity and inclusivity” and its goals to become an “anti-racist” theater.
We did not cancel Cinderella because of content,” said the company in a statement. “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.”
In an interview with the Twin Cities Pioneer Press, artistic director Michael Brindisi said the reasoning for the cancellation was that the cast was not diverse enough.
“It was 98 percent white,” said Brindisi. “That doesn’t work with what we’re saying we’re going to do.”
After George Floyd died, Brindisi said it was time to “change our culture and make us more diverse and more equitable as a company. We’ve really dug in on diversity, equity and inclusion, the commitment to social justice and getting more diversity into our business across the board.”
Rather than showing a “98% white Cinderella,” the company will be performing “Footloose.”
The company will also open applications for replacement actors to replace in its “The Music Man” production. Priority will be given to “BIPOC” performers.