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Critics give warm welcome to Frozen musical pre-Broadway

From BBC - September 15, 2017

Do you want to build a snowman - again? According to reviews of a pre-Broadway staging of Disney's new musical Frozen, the answer is largely yes.

Based on the hit 2013 animated feature, the musical has opened in Denver ahead of its New York launch in February.

Directed by Britain's Michael Grandage, the show is a loose adaptation of Hans Christian Andersen's The Snow Queen.

And according to Variety critic Lisa Kennedy, the results are both "crisp and original".

"The musical's reported development budget of $25m [18.3m] to $30m [22m] has been well-spent," she writes.

"The creators have added heft and gravitas without making the story darker or scarier... [and] the ensemble sings beautifully."

Set in the fantasy northern realm of Arendelle, Frozen tells of two sisters whose relationship is tested when one reveals she has magical snow-creating powers.

The film won two Oscars in 2014 - one for best animated feature, and another for its stand-out song Let It Go.

The musical includes that and other songs from the original film - among them Do You Want to Build a Snowman? - while adding more than 10 new numbers.

Caissie Levy plays Elsa while Patti Murin plays her sibling Anna - who spends the show torn between dashing prince Hans (John Riddle) and ice seller Kristoff (Jelani Alladin).

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