Cinderella at The Ned this week


This weekend is a big one for the Jackson Children and Teen Theatre.

As if it’s not enough that they’re presenting a production of “Cinderella,” one of the premier fairy tales of American culture, but there’s a historical aspect to the weekend as well.

“This is the 50th anniversary of the Children and Teen Theatre, so we’re inviting a number of alumni and luminaries back for a couple of private celebrations and a matinee performance,” said David McCall, the director for The Ned, where “Cinderella” will be presented. “So we’re looking forward to seeing some old friends and maybe some others we’ve heard about or seen their names in past programs but haven’t met yet.”

This week’s production will include a cast of 43 and will be based largely on the 1997 film production of the classic tail that starred Brandy in the title roll and Whitney Houston as the fairy godmother.

“Cinderella is Cinderella, so we’ll obviously stick with the foundational elements of the story itself,” McCall said. “But that 1997 production had a little more emphasis on diversity and inclusion, so hopefully viewers who’ve seen that production might see some similarities with us.”

This is the fourth time in its 50-year existence that Children and Teen Theater has presented “Cinderella,” with the most recent being in 2001. McCall actually was a part of that production.

Katie Kennedy, who portrayed Cinderella in 2001, returns to the stage in this production as the queen. Eboni Taylor, who’s had a number of roles in recent productions at The Ned is back as the fairy godmother.

Performances begin on Thursday, June 13, at 10 a.m., with Cinderella’s Enchanted Tea Party upstairs at the Ned. Young princes and princesses can look forward to fruit tea, crumpets, crafts, and special guest appearances by Cinderella and the Prince.

Since this production marks the 50th anniversary of the Jackson Children and Teen Theatre, everyone who has participated in the program, onstage and off, is welcome to attend, reminisce, and reconnect at an alumni reception following the noon matinee performance on Saturday, June 15.

Accompanying the production, the art gallery in the theatre lobby will hold an exhibit commemorating fifty years of programming. Photos spanning half a century as well as set pieces and costumes will be on display throughout the month of June.

Tickets are available at, the Ned’s City of Jackson website. Attendees are encouraged to purchase their tickets early.

Admission is $20 and $15 for students, seniors and veterans. Show times are noon and 7 p.m. on Thursday, 7 p.m. on Friday, and noon and 6 p.m. on Saturday. 

Brandon Shields,