? Shrek the musical reviews proclaim Dreamworks Theatricals maiden Broadway venture as a fairly average production. This maiden venture is said to have been created at a budget of $24 million. The sets of Shrek the Musical have been designed by Tim Hatley and bear clear evidence of this lofty price tag. The designs are a mixture of high-tech and old-style backdrops. Ornate style frames and pop-up picture book visuals combine with puppets and elaborate costumes to create a truly magical setting. The play which is based on the 2001 animated movie version of a childrens story by William Steig is based on an ogre who lives in a swamp and falls in love with a Princess. While rescuing Princess Fiona from a tower, Shrek, the ogre comes to learn all about love and how people should not be judged on appearances alone. The Cast Of Shrek Meets The Expectations According to Shrek the musical reviews, the principal cast more or less meets the requirements set forth as per the script. Brian dArcy James who portrays Shrek, the giant green ogre, deserves special mention for remaining appealing even in the ogre like get-up. Sutton Foster is, as usual, impressive in her role as Princess Fiona. Suttons role as the princess, however, does not demand much as compared to her recent performances in Young Frankenstein and Drowsy Chaperone. As the Shrek the musical reviews state, Christopher Sieber who plays the pint-sized despotic Lord Farquaad needs to be truly applauded. The naturally tall Sieber had to perform almost the entire role on his knees. John Tartaglia as the frustrated Pinocchio also provides for some light moments. The odd one out in the cast appears to be Daniel Breaker who plays Shreks companion, Donkey and manages to look totally effeminate in the process. Unlike other musicals like The Little Mermaid or The Lion King, Shrek is more in favour of literal representations rather than stylized solutions. This is evident in the fat-suits and green head-masks worn by Shrek and Princess Fiona, his part-time ogre sweetheart. Shrek the musical reviews claim that the real accomplishment of the production, however, is the fact that the gigantic set-pieces and busy visuals do not detract from the appeal of the actors and the characters that they portray. The Success Of Shrek The Musical In the recent past, there have been a number of films that have attempted to narrate a fairy tale with a contemporary touch but few have tasted success the way Shrek has. The musical follows the original storyline of the 2001 movie which conjured up true enchantment without being overtly quaint or sentimental. The irreverent charm that is a vital part of the movie remains in the theatrical version too. Although the storytelling does run into some bumpy patches and the songs do not quite hit the note, Shrek is never short on spectacle or comedy. As Shrek the musical reviews state, the show is a genuine contender for a share of the Disney market on Broadway.