artwork by Mikyong Rodgers

Renowned Canadian Playwright
Morley Shulman 


Infinity Stage
A publishing House for modern plays and musicals


Zolushka: The Russian Cinderella
                 a musical comedy-fantasy

 cast of 14 (6m,8w)         95-minute running time        18 songs

            Music  by
   Steven W Rodgers

            Lyrics  by
   Wendy Christopher

            Book  by
   Antonina Rodgers

watercolor by Mikyong Rodgers

A wonderfully fresh twist on the classic tale, filled with delightfully zany characters
and as much for adults as for children

full script

 slide show with music samples

 contact:  Steven W Rodgers     [email protected]      703-785-4141

 The complete soundtrack with lyrics:

 (including BROADWAY'S Ashley Park (Mean Girls) in the title role!


 featured musicians: Paul Bell (guitar and bass) John Wright (trumpet)  Jeff Wolf (drums)
  music composed & arranged by:  Steven W Rodgers     
play overture
  The Stepsisters try to impress the Prince in Act I of Zolushka.
   photo by Julia MacInnis  
Hear the trumpets sound
In the land of stories
In a land where everything
is filled with laughter, tears and glories
Where you meet us all
Wicked witch and princess
And our stories always end in happiness
We’ve got the good, the bad
...and don’t forget the ugly
If you want giants, this is where you’ll find ‘em
And the fair princesses
Have their daring princes right behind ‘em
All the good guys win, and the bad guy loses
And the handsome hero
Can win any girl that he chooses
Welcome to a world where everything is peachy
Where all wishes come true
Fairy tales, old and new
Songs, music and magic, good times and bad
Happy and sad
Once upon a time, so the story goes
Is the way the best ones always start
As everybody knows
Step into our world, come and join the laughter
Follow us until we all meet happy ever after
In the end you know that evil always fails
Step into our fairy tale!

Fairy Tale Land

  principal singers:  Elizabeth Colandene, Julie Marie Britt,
   Anna Maria Shockey, Christopher Scott Miller
  featured musicians: Paul Bell (guitar)
  music:  Steven W Rodgers      Lyrics: Wendy Christopher
play song
  The entire company begins the show with great fanfare.
   photo by Julia MacInnis  


So this is my destiny
Hiding in shadows where no one can see
Scrubbing floors on hands and knees
Trying oh so hard to please
And dreaming of the day fortune smiles on me
I spend my days below the stairs
Wishing and wondering if anyone cares.
Guess I should know my place
Accept my fate with all good grace                      
Or can you change the ways of the world
With your wishes and prayers?
Who wipes away my tears?
When I am crying, who hears?
Though my dreams are dead and gone
I must be strong and keep silent if i'm to go on
For who knows what tomorrow brings?
I’ll make the best of things, this little ugly duckling
Who dreams she’ll turn into a swan.        

  principal singers:  Ashley Park
  featured musicians: Paul Bell (guitar), Johnny Castle (bass) 
  music:  Steven W Rodgers      Lyrics: Wendy Christopher
play song
  Zolushka dreams of a better life       photo by Julia MacInnis  
You must make a good impression at the ball
So you’ll need some lessons in decorum
But mom, we’re pretty as we are
                               Anna and Sara
Anyone who disagrees, we’ll ignore ’em
Wealthy men love a lady
With poise and class and that je nais se quois,
You’ll be judged on what the people think you are!
Stomach in, chest out! Look down your nose!
Always walk as if you’re knees are tied together
We’ll look so dumb
It’s undignified!
Do you think he’s gonna want someone to
Talk about the weather?
The prince will want to find a lady
Who moves with grace
                              Anna and Sara
Then that’s what we will do

If you really want the prince to dance with you.
                              Anna and Sara
Oh, we do! we do!
If you do everything I tell you to do
The Prince will cross a crowded room for you
                              Anna and Sara
We must shine brighter than the brightest star
To show them all just how refined we are!
Keep your voice high pitched
And giggle like a girl
Even if you think that he’s not funny
Old men bore me!
The young are immature!
Then grit your teeth and think about their money.
Social status is important
                              Anna and Sara
And wealth means more than personality
Always aim for men of higher quality.
                              Stepmother and Girls
We must always aim for men of higher quality!     

Men of Higher Quality

  principal singers:  Ayelet Firstenberg & Nicole Raviv
  featured musicians: Paul Bell (guitar), Johnny Castle (bass) 
  music:  Steven W Rodgers      Lyrics: Wendy Christopher
  Stepmother lectures her daughters on how to attract men of quality.        photo by Julia MacInnis  
play song

Just a Garden Pumpkin

I was just a garden pumpkin
Sitting there in the dark by myself
Soon to be a jack-o’-lantern
All carved up on somebody’s shelf
 And then a strange thing happened:
 A flash of light, and i started to grow
 Now suddenly I’ve become a noble carriage
 And that’s all I ever wanted from life
What a wondrous place this world is
There are so many things for me to learn
Now that I’m a noble carriage
I find I have no desire to return

To that lowly place in the garden
That i came from only moments ago
Though now it seems I’ve been like this forever
If i could only stay….this way.

  principal singers:  Julia Nightingale
  featured musicians: Paul Bell (guitar), Young Devereaux (sax) 
  music and lyrics by:  Steven W Rodgers     
play song
  The Pumpkin is grateful to the Fairy Godmother for giving her a chance at a new life.        photo by Julia MacInnis  

Mistress Ballet

   featured musicians: Erin Snedecor (cello)    music composed and arranged by:  Steven W Rodgers     
play instrumental
  The Pumpkin is grateful for her short time in a new world.       
photo by Julia MacInnis  
 The King tries, in his own, awkward way, to interpret the meaning of the dance moves, performed by the Mistress of Ballroom Dancing.         photo by Julia MacInnis
Keeping up with royalty’s such a bind
If you get left behind you fall from grace 
You can beat society at the game  
                              Stepmother and girls
As long as you scream your name
and show your face
                             Stepmother  (to forest keeper)
While i’m being seen, dear with the well-to-do
Where the heck are you?
I’ve worked so hard and all this time
Where have you been, dear?
Do I have to do it all on my own?
Now that my girls have grown, the time is right
We must find them suitors with lots of cash
If they’ve got panache their future is bright
If wealth and status isn’t in-bred
You have to marry it instead
That’s the thing to do, dear
Though it’s plain to see
It didn’t work for me
               (to forest keeper)
‘cause i’ve got you, dear
Mommy didn’t marry quality
Running around and putting myself about
All of the time without much help from you
You spend your time complaining
And staring off into space
Take that look off your face
And find something to do!
(in the musical interlude, the daughters run around, trying to get the attention of eligible men, posing, shouting “yoo hoo,” etc.)
                           Party goers
See how they sniff out all the rich guys
The smell of honey draws the flies
See them chasing money
Flirting with the best
But no one is impressed
It’s not attractive
When they do it, it just looks funny
But keeping up with royalty’s such a bind
If you get left behind you fall from grace
You can beat society at the game
As long as you scream your name
and show your face!

Keeping Up With Royalty

play song
  principal singers:  Ayelet Firstenberg
  featured musicians: Paul Bell (guitar), Johnny Castle (bass) 
  music:  Steven W Rodgers     Lyrics: Wendy Christopher  
The Stepmother takes notes of all the signs of attention from the King and Prince in her velvet book,  including the fact that Prince cleared his throat twice, and asked "Where is that draft coming from?"        photo by Julia MacInnis  
Come and join the ball, my dear
Come and meet us all, my dear
We’re all having so much fun
Happy smiling faces here
Dropping airs and graces dear
That’s how things should be done
Come join the laughter
And then after
When we’ve dropped names                     
We’ll play silly games
‘cause this king knows
How to make parties swing

Who is she with his majesty?
Have you ever seen her before?
Where is she from?
She just has to be someone
Who’s very important
Someone famous,  maybe royalty
Quite a mystery is she!
Does anyone know who she is?
            (music interlude)  
Won’t you come and dance my dear              
Come and feel the romance here                
This will be a night of wonder            
All the stars are bright for you                   
So your wishes might come true               
It’s a wonderful spell we’re under           
And I feel wonderful, marvelous,
What a blast                                                       
Every happy hour seems to fly past    
Join in the fun                                           
For the night’s just begun 
Frivolity, jollity
Something for everyone tonight!

Come and Join the Ball

play song
  principal singers:  Sarah Cuc
  featured musicians: Paul Bell (guitar), Johnny Castle (bass) 
  music:  Steven W Rodgers     Lyrics: Wendy Christopher  
  The Prince dances with Zolushka for the first time.        photo by Julia MacInnis  
So what happens now, in this land of our dreams?
Every wish that we’ve yearned for
Will suddenly be granted
If it’s as full of magic as it seems
Shall we make some wishes?
Listen hard to our hearts?
Do we dare have the courage
To reach out for the moon
when deep inside the soul is where the magic starts?
Dreams, like dew drops, when the rain stops
Run down the leaves and quench the earth
You can’t put a price on what they’re worth
All your heart can hold
Can’t be bought with gold
Take a journey through your mind
See what riches you can find
All these gentle daydreams that we hold in our hands

Fill our hearts with a glow 
That will linger in the memory
 Even if we’ve built our dreams on shifting sands
Dreams like rain, glows bright as rainbows
caught in a shaft of April sun
And though they fade away, they’re never gone

Land of Our Dreams

play song
  principal singers:  Ashley Park & Leo Grinberg
  featured musicians: Paul Bell (guitar) 
  music:  Steven W Rodgers     Lyrics: Wendy Christopher  
  The Prince and Zolushka are in a fantasy land, courtesy of the Palace   Magician.       photo by Julia MacInnis  

The Zolushka Shuffle

play instrumental
  The wedding guests all take part in a bizarre "flash mob" dance, with a little help from the Palace Magician.       photo by Julia MacInnis  
Stop! no, wait! why do you have to go?
Please, dear prince!  there’s so much you don’t know!
I must leave before i shatter all your dreams
For i am not everything that i seem.
What went wrong, what made her run away?
She just up and left, what did i say?
I wish our worlds weren’t so far apart
All I can offer him is my heart!
                             Pumpkin Carriage
It’s time to split, the hour’s getting late
Oh what to do, I’ve lost my shoe,
I can’t keep up, oh wait!
Sister leave it, there’s no time to stop
Looks like for now, you’ll just have to hop
Would the Prince reject me if he knew?
A girl whose friends are rodents? Wouldn’t you?
                             Pumpkin Carriage
And then, to get home, it’s a pumpkin you grab
When most are content to just take a cab
It’s all my fault, where did she go? what did I say?
What did the prince think of me when I ran away?
                             Pumpkin Carriage
In our dreams tonight will go on and on
But none of us are dreaming anymore
                             Pumpkin Carriage
Now we’ll go back to the dull lives we had before
And I will go back to sweeping the floor.
                             Prince and Zolushka
Did i find love just to see it dispappear?
Looks like our wishes end here!

The Escape

play song
  principal singers:  Ashley Park & Leo Grinberg
  featured musicians: John Wright III (trumpet) 
  music:  Steven W Rodgers     Lyrics: Wendy Christopher  
  Zolushka, the Coachman and the Pumpkin try to console each other as it's nearing midnight and they must make their escape.       photo by Julia MacInnis  
Can you feel the moment
When you change from boy to man?
Could it be that fateful day
When someone takes your breath away?
And now it’s finally happened
Should I use my head or my heart?
Smitten by a pretty stranger
I’ll brave any danger
But will I know what I fight for--
Love at first sight, or
Childish fantasy?
Does this mean that I’ve changed?
Am I older and wiser?
When I look in her eyes, I'm
Lost for words.....this isn’t easy
If you climb a mountain
Slay a dragon, cross a sea
For her love and hers alone
Then does it mean that you are grown?
Braving all your demons
Fighting all your darkest fears
Though the thunder rolls above
I’d face it all for love
So if I wear my heart on my sleeve
 Is it safe to believe
 My dreams might still come true?
And there you are
With the face of an angel
Can’t help thinking it’s strange how
Love can find the child in you.
If my words are tangled
If I’m clumsy, give me a chance
I once knew what to say and do
But not tonight, I’m overwhelmed by you!

All For Love

play song
  principal singers:  Leo Grinberg
  featured musicians: Paul Bell (guitar) 
  music:  Steven W Rodgers     Lyrics: Wendy Christopher  
The Prince is despondent over the loss of Zolushka.       photo by Julia MacInnis  
Well don’t just stand there,
‘cause this is an emergency
It’s a matter of honor!
She’ll come back, just wait and see
Don’t fret, your majesty
We’ll do our best to find her
We’ll do our best . . .to find her!
Let’s advertise!
Say the prince would like a wife
A girl with just one shoe
That’s the worst idea you’ve ever had!
They’ll think the prince has gone quite mad!
I know, let’s hit the stores,
Then we cannot lose
See which girls are hopping
Then say “hey, ma’am--
Are you shopping for shoes?”
If she is hopping
She just might be shopping for shoes!!
Stop wasting all this time--
This is an emergency
We have got to find her
If she has no memory of
The prince’s words of love
It’s our duty to remind her.
We must find her . we can remind her!
Lost heart and lost her shoe
Wonder if she even knew
What she left behind her
This could be disastrous
So now it’s up to us
And we’re gonna find her!
We know we are gonna find her!
We’re gonna find that girl!

We're Gonna Find Her

play song
  principal singers:   Mike Shiflett
  featured musicians: Paul Bell (guitar)  John Wright III (trumpet)
  music:  Steven W Rodgers     Lyrics: Wendy Christopher  
The King enlists the help of the Townspeople to find Zolushka.       photo by Julia MacInnis  
Like each tiny snowflake
Was it just too perfect to last?
Though I found your love, it seems
Last night lives only in my dreams
My life’s without a purpose
Till the day I find you again
I have nothing left to give you
For my heart went with you
But you are worth
This pain that I go through
Somehow I know -- you
Can’t be far away
You’re the first and the last
There will never be another
If I search the world over
There’s a chance I’ll find you someday
My heart belongs to you now
What can i do but follow my heart?
And if wishes do come true
Perhaps my heart
Will lead me straight to you.

All For Love (reprise)  

play song
  principal singers:   Ashley Park & Leo Grinberg
  featured musicians: Paul Bell (guitar) 
  music:  Steven W Rodgers     Lyrics: Wendy Christopher  
The Prince finds a girl in the forest who looks very familiar.       photo by Julia MacInnis  
I think last night was a runaway success
My dears, I thought that 
I would burst with pride
He smiled at me
Well, he said ‘hello’ to me
As long as I’m the mother of the prince’s bride
One of you has won him over
Aw, too bad, sis
Ha!  yeah, too bad for you!
I’m prettier!
Well, i’m smarter!
Girls!  that will do!
When I talked with him I really made him laugh
With a face like yours, I’m not surprised
I enraptured him, it’s a quality I have
How polite, he kept his boredom well disguised
Momma, was it me or anna?
                             Anna and Sara
Yeah, mom, if you were in the prince’s shoes
How would you know
Just which one of us to choose?
We’re both so beautiful and so refined
However can the prince make up his mind?
When he decides which one of you to wed
Maybe he’ll give the loser cash instead
                             Anna and Sara
Is that what he said?
                             Anna and Sara
We both took note of everything you said
We only judged the men by their money
We batted our eyes and giggled at their jokes
                             Anna and Sara
Even when we thought they weren’t too funny
It was our night to bag a husband
And wealth means more than personality
We only aimed for men of higher quality!

Men of Higher Quality (reprise)  

play song
  principal singers:   Ayelet Firstenberg & Nicole Raviv
  featured musicians: Paul Bell (guitar)  & Johnny Castle (bass)
  music:  Steven W Rodgers     Lyrics: Wendy Christopher  
The day after the ball, Stepmother is certain that one of her daughters has won the Prince's hand.       photo by Julia MacInnis  
Spread the good news throughout the land
My baby’s won the prince’s hand
Now we’ll be up where we should be
With the cream of society!
If wealth and status isn’t inbred
You simply marry it instead
That’s the thing to do, dear,
And now, thanks to the shoe
It’s clearly worked for you
 But not for me, mom!
I’ll invite you to the palace!         
Keeping up with royalty’s  such a bind
If you get left behind you fall from grace
You can beat society at the game
As long as you scream your name
And show your face!
I heard the trumpet, does it mean
That you have found the future queen?
Please let me through now i must see
My kingdom’s new princess-to-be . . .
Where is she, the little darling? 
Where is she, my daughter?
There she is, your majesty!
                  (pointing at anna triumphantly)
                        King (confused)
Right here, your majesty!
But . .  but your majesty, look at her feet, your majesty.
Why would i look at her feet?  I can see from her face it’s not her.
But the crystal shoe fit, your majesty.
So what?  it’s still not her--that much I know.
Oh no, you don’t, your majesty
The shoe’s a perfect fit , it’s plain to see!
A sovereign’s word is gold           
At least that’s what we’ve all been told.
If the shoe fits, she’ll wear it!
How can I ever bear it?
What possessed me to have made such a vow
I have a strange feeling I'll regret it now!
Though the king is really good and kind,
It’s clear to see that he has lost his mind!
There must be over a hundred girls who
Could easily slip their foot inside of that shoe!
Please, dear lady, don’t do this to me
She’s not the one, it’s plain to see
This girl is blonde and not so tall
She’s not the same girl at all!
You can’t back out, your majesty
Don’t grovel! where’s your dignity?
The deed is done, we all have seen
The shoe has fit the future queen
Is her  foot the perfect size?
                         Anna (moaning in pain)
Sort of.
So she’s the princess
Unless you were telling lies.
Face the facts, the search is over, the shoe fits
There’s nothing left to do but call it quits!
How could things have turned out so bad
I have a feeling i’ve been had!
Now that the king is up against the wall
The monastery’s not such a bad idea . . .
After all!

 If the Shoe Fits  

play song
  principal singers:   Ayelet Firstenberg & Mike Shiflett
  featured musicians: Paul Bell (guitar)  & Johnny Castle (bass)
  music:  Steven W Rodgers    
  Lyrics: Wendy Christopher & Steven W Rodgers 
The The King realizes his mistake too late, when the shoe fit the foot of the wrong girl and the Stepmother won't let him go back on his promise.       photo by Julia MacInnis  
                             Mistress of BD
Follow me and we’ll see
Just what you are made of
Don’t be shy, have a try
Don’t be afraid
Is this right?
                             Mistress of BD
No, not quite!  I can see
This is not going to be easy.
Watch me now, this is how
You should do a pl’ie
Oh dear!  No dear!
Bend from the knee!
This will not be quite so easy I fear
Never mind, for I like a challenge dear
Don’t make each step you take
So loud and heavy
Just wait till i’m a royal bride
Dancing will be banned,
It’s so pointless and dumb!
And if that’s unfair.... I don’t care!
Watch her jump!  What a lump!
Dances like a rock!
Poor prince!  Won’t he wince!
Bound to get a shock!

                             Mistress of BD
Not like that!  Both feet flat!
Oh dear me, This is not going to be easy
Elegance, when you dance
That’s what really counts
Stepping light, left and right
                             Mistress of BD
No dear, that’s a flounce!
No one said that this would be easy I know
Try and smile, relax and just take it slow
Light, think light, light as a feather
Fat chance!  You dance just like a heifer!

 Not Going To Be Easy  

play song
  principal singers:   Ashley Park & Nicole Raviv
  featured musicians: Paul Bell (guitar) 
  music:  Steven W Rodgers    
  Lyrics: Wendy Christopher 
Learning how to dance is a futile effort for Anna, just as the Mistress of Ballroom Dancing had expected.     photo by Julia MacInnis  
All’s well that ends well
For zolushka and the prince.
And the past forgiven
Let’s shake hands and all be friends
So when this story ends
We can go on livin’
Happily ….. ever after
I was just a step away from a life of luxury
Then it’s snatched away before our eyes!
Don’t even get a consolation prize
                             Fairy godmother        
 Can’t see the wonders at your feet
 With noses in the air
 Money isn’t everything
It is to us!
Ladies, please don’t despair
The prince has dozens
of distant cousins ...  to spare
Where?  Where?
Long live the prince and his new wife
Let’s bring this town to life
With the sound of people singing
Happily ever after
Oh, by the way, my child
All those things we said
They were only meant in fun
Don’t cross us off your guest list, hon
Stepmother, never fear, I forgive you all
Who has the upper hand now?
The old girl lost, now it’s her turn to crawl
Didn’t know that Zolushka
Would be the belle of the ball!

Let’s throw a party
Cuz I’m so happy I could cry--it’ll be a riot
We’ll be high society
We’ll live in luxury
                           Forest keeper (spoken)
…and i’ll get some peace and quiet!
We’ll live happy ever after
We’ll live happy ever after….after all!

 Happy Ever After

play song
  principal singers:   Mike Shiflett, Ashley Park,
  Ayelet  Firstenberg, Sarah Cuc
  featured musicians: Paul Bell (guitar), John Wright III (trumpet) 
  music:  Steven W Rodgers    
  Lyrics: Wendy Christopher 
In the end, all is forgiven, and the young couple will be married, and live happily ever after...naturally.     photo by Julia MacInnis