'Wonderland' First Look: Kate Shindle is mad as a hatter in new Broadway show -- EXCLUSIVE

Kate-Shindle-WonderlandImage Credit: Michal DanielNo, that’s not the Red Queen in Wonderland, the new musical version of Lewis Carroll’s classic Alice in Wonderland opening at Broadway’s Marquis Theatre on April 17. That’s actually the Mad Hatter, played by former Miss America Kate Shindle (who’s starred on stage in in Legally Blonde and Cabaret). “One of my first questions to the creative team was, ‘Why is the Mad Hatter female?'” admits Shindle about her gender-bending new role.
“It’s a cool gimmick, but it has to make sense.” And it does: This update, featuring music by veteran Broadway composer Frank Wildhorn (Jekyll & Hyde, The Scarlett Pimpernel), features a grown-up Alice who, dissatisfied with her marriage and career, takes an elevator into the bowels of Manhattan to find her missing daughter and, consequently, herself. “There are a lot of messages here,” says Shindle, who is introduced during the famous tea party sequence (pictured, top). “One is that there are forces at work within everybody and the question is what we want to let win. The Mad Hatter represents a part of Alice — I hesitate to say her dark side because she’s the fun, life-of-the-party side, but she’s also her insecurity, self-sabotage, and fear. The tea party is where Alice is introduced to the Hatter and realizes she has to reckon with that force.” What about the red pantsuit and bustle? “That’s the final showdown. It’s at a point in the show where the story might as well be over, but bad stuff, you know, just doesn’t go away quite so easily. That song is the beginning of it.” 

Comments (15 total) Add your comment
  • Because someone had to…

    …more like “Mad Hotter.”

    • jasmine


  • Sparky

    “That’s the final showdown. It’s at a point in the show where the story might as well be over, but bad stuff, you know, just doesn’t go away quite so easily.”

    So red pant suit hatter is THE FINAL BOSS?

    • Ladysenshi

      PRETTY MUCH lol

  • annie

    Great Show! Saw it in Tampa last week. Gonna be a smash when it hits broadway

  • Tomica

    Saw this show when it was in Tampa…it was AMAZING!!

  • JU

    Im looking forward to Spiderman!!

  • Rosey

    I saw the first preview/original version of this show in Tampa. It sucked.

    However, I saw the revised version and it was pretty good.

  • brandon

    was kind of hoping Nikki Snelson would stay the Mad Hatter. Don’t know why they recast that role??

    • MLS

      It was because they rewrote the role, and made it with less dancing, so they didn’t need Nikki anymore

  • UBeachU

    The red Mad Hatter costume is my fave! I want to BE her for Halloween!

  • Argon Blanchette


  • Shaun

    Soooooo glad they re-cast this role Nikki Snelson was horrid in the Tampa previews and on the concept cd…

  • Melissa

    Nikki Snelsom was actually my favorite charachter from the entire show when I first saw it. She had those electric blue eyes that could pierce you even from the back row. She also had an incredible voice and completely envoloped the character. Not really sure what a former Miss America can do with it that Nikki couldn’t.

  • Chris

    I saw the 2nd Preview on Broadway – it SUCKED! Easily one of the five WORST shows I’ve ever seen! The cast were all incredibly talented and could sing their faces off, but the script was LAME, and the lyrics were TERRIBLE! If you were planning on seeing it, SKIP IT!!!

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