By Maureen Lee Lenker
October 30, 2020 at 09:52 PM EDT
Andrew Lloyd Webber
Credit: Roy Rochlin/FilmMagic

Andrew Lloyd Webber is trying to bring glass slippers back.

The legendary composer is tackling the fairy tale of Cinderella for his next project, his first original musical since 2015's School of Rock. On Friday, he dropped the debut single from the upcoming cast album for Andrew Lloyd Webber's Cinderella: The Musical.

"Bad Cinderella" shows a decidedly different Ella from the meeker woman in some versions, decrying the people who deride her, call her Cinderella, and lead shallow lives. "Call me bad Cinderella, I take pride when you sneer, I am proud that I'm not like you," Cinderella, played by Carrie Hope Fletcher, proclaims in the lyrics. "Ironclad Cinderella, I face life with no fear, and a more-than-sky-high IQ."

Cinderella was originally intended to debut this month, but its West End opening has been postponed to spring 2021. In its stead, Webber decided to record and release the original cast recording prior to the show hitting the stage. The album features cast members from the production as well as some surprise guest vocalists.

"Fifty years ago I couldn't get Jesus Christ Superstar on stage as nobody wanted to produce it, so it appeared on record first," Webber said in a statement. "It's so strange to find history repeating itself half a century later with the album of the complete score of my new Cinderella. I can't get Cinderella on stage because I'm not allowed to, so I have gone back to my roots and recorded the album first."

Webber and cast began recording the album in March, with the composer largely recording artists remotely and producing the score from his home. There were also socially distanced studio sessions in London, once deemed safe.

"Bad Cinderella," the album's first single, is available on all digital music platforms. Fletcher will star as Cinderella when the production opens in the West End.

Cinderella is currently slated to open at London's Gillian Lynne Theatre on May 19, with previews beginning April 30. The production is billed as a complete reinvention of the classic fairy tale, based on an idea by Emerald Fennell (Promising Young Woman). David Zippel (Mulan) wrote the lyrics.

Director Laurence Connor and choreographer JoAnn M. Hunter, the team behind School of Rock and a revival of Joseph & the Amazing Technicolor Dreamcoat at the London Palladium, are reuniting with Webber for the project.

In addition to Fletcher, Olivier award nominee Victoria Hamilton-Barritt will star as Cinderella's Stepmother. The remainder of the creative team and cast are still to be announced.

Listen to "Bad Cinderella" above.

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