Before anybody ask. No, I didn’t go to see the one with blue Will Smith. That is coming is not coming out to movies until another few months. It’s pretty impossible to have not heard of Aladdin.
Imagine a West End show on a Disney budget. It is exactly what expect it to be. Full of sprinkles, glitter and magic.
Heck! Disney classic movies are basically animated musical cartoons.
It was an extremely enjoyable production with more costume changes that one could count with two hands. The stage ever-evolving set was the most intricate and impressive that I have ever witness. Multiple screens with translucency controls, three layers of stage-edge-lighting and sweeping massive pieces that emerge from the top. It was blow away my fledgling engineering mind.
The songs and choreography mixing up Disney tunes with musical exclusives. They incorporated the Arabian origins of the tale through its the fusion Middle Eastern dance with jazz & tap elements. This influence was present in a two or three pieces then returns to standard musical moves.
I had a proper laugh when genie was first introduced with Friend Like Me with a nice sprinkle of other Disney favourites.
Genie is no doubt a key star of the show. Despite being a highly likable character in both mediums with the musical rendition having a tendency to talk a bit too much. To the point that some lines were lost – incomprehensible due the sear speed and magnitude. They were a bit too overly ambitious with Genie.
They were hoping that he could execute an excessive amount of meme-based references. We were basically drowning in them at particular part of the show. I nearly threw in the towel when they started flossing.
There’s a fine line between endearing side-tracker and obnoxious rambler. A feat that is difficult to accomplish and that made the late Robin William so iconic.
I LOVED the supporting casts. Aladdin’s lovable monkey companion, Abu, was replaced with a trio of mates similar to Mulan’s Yao, Ling, and Chien Po. Both in character and statue, the alpha male, the big food lover and the group clown. Babkak, Omar, Aladdin, Aladdin, Kassim!
The moment everyone was waiting for came in a BIG way. A Whole New World transformed relatively large stage into the expansive night sky. I had goosebumps.
Visually, audibly and technically wise – it was executed perfectly. The seamless transition across the gentle rolling landscape as the carpet flew feet up in the air.
Until Next Time,
Low-res pictures on the official website…
Come on, Disney!