Arabian Nights Men. Photo by Deen van Meer.
By Sylvia Cassidy
duPont Manual High School, Class of 2021
Disney’s musical “Aladdin,” now on tour across the country, can make you believe in magic again.
The show, based on the 1992 animated movie, is a colorful reminder of that special feeling you felt while watching Disney as a kid. While you come for energetic characters, like the Genie (Michael James Scott), you stay for the new additions in the musical, like Aladdin’s new pals Babkak (Zach Bencal), Omar (Phillipe Arroyo), and Kassim (Jed Feder).
The Genie had an infectious personality and was definitely the best character in the show. While I enjoyed the other characters, too, they weren’t played true to the original film. For example, Jafar (Jonathan Weir) was menacing but not scary and Jasmine (Lissa deGuzman) was passionate, but not fierce.
During opening press night, the ensemble was sloppy, unsynchronized, and the dialogue was rushed.
I had the privilege of seeing the show two nights in a row. During opening press night, the ensemble was sloppy, unsynchronized, and the dialogue was rushed. It became hard to understand what they were saying and what I was seeing from the high balcony.
The next night, I thought I was seeing an entirely new cast. The actors seemed to stir each other as well as the audience. The difficulties with pyrotechnics that threw off the actors the first night were eliminated from the second show. The song and script drew viewers into the fictional world of Agruba.
While the show was wonderful in almost every way, my favorite part was seeing a little boy beside me amazed by the “Whole New World” of musicals. It really warmed my heart to see kids like him immensely enjoy the show. #Aladdin (Clinton Greenspan) seemed to capture the hearts of everyone in the audience, exhibiting the essence of the #Disney spirit.