From what it’s usually known for its film version, Disney’s ALADDIN takes the stage to offer us a musical production, something I fervently believe each one of us should look forward to. And for me, I cannot let this pass so easily. To give you a brief background of the show, here’s a description taken from the program booklet:
Based on the much-loved animated film, Disney’s ALADDIN tells the story of a street-smart commoner whose whole life changes with one rub of a magic lamp. The brand new romantic musical adventures incorporates all the beloved songs from the film’s Oscar-winning score and brings some of the movie’s most memorable characters to life. Jafar, Iago, the Sultan, the Genie and of course Aladdin and Jasmine come together to create a whole new world of magical musical theatre for the whole family. Disney’s ALADDIN features music by eight time Oscar award Alan Menken and Lyrics by Oscar Award winner Howard Ashman, Oscar Award winner Tim Rise, and Tony Award nominated lyricist Chad Beguelin (who also wrote the brand new book of the musical).
I have always been a Disney fan and ALADDIN was no exception. Once my boyfriend told me about the production, he immediately bought tickets for both of us. And thus, on the evening of November 17th, the highly-anticipated date had come and we just couldn’t contain our excitement!
The show overwhelmed me with feelings so much that I couldn’t find the right words to describe how much I enjoyed the musical production. You know what I mean? There are so many things I want to say, yet I’m afraid I might diminish the value of the show’s effect on me. I hope could do this right, so I’ll just pour my heart out and somehow, make meaningful sense out of it.
Disney’s ALADDIN’s newest stage musical somewhat differs from the animated film. The show presents us with more songs aside from those we’re familiar with in the movie; thus, letting the audience connect more with the characters, as well as the story itself. From the famous songs like Arabian Nights, One Jump Ahead, Friend Like Me, Prince Ali, and A Whole New World, the show also introduces us to new songs such as Babkak, Omar, Aladdin, Kassim, Proud of Your Boy, Call Me a Princess, A Million Miles Away, Somebody’s Got Your Back, and a lot more.
It is evident that some details have been tweaked a bit, but the whole concept of the story remains the same. With the absence of animal characters such as Abu and Rajah, they are, instead, replaced by Aladdin’s three astonishing, significant sidekicks – Babkak, Kassim, and Omar. They also serve as narrators of the story while scenes transition from one to another, entertaining the audience with their striking personalities, funny dialogues, and out-of-this-world song numbers.
Atlantis Productions’ Disney’s ALADDIN is beyond expectation. Everything and every character seem to come out directly from the movie. It’s like witnessing a fantasy happening in reality. Each actor/actress succeeds in portraying their designated roles and I can’t help but be amazed by their God-given talents. For one, I never expected Tom Rodriguez to represent Aladdin perfectly. I knew him from Pinoy Big Brother before, but since I don’t update myself much with showbiz news, I’m not familiar with his acting skills, let alone his singing skills. I’m, indeed, quite surprised by his performance. He talks, acts, and sings exactly like Aladdin from the movie. Amazing, right? You guys have to watch to believe it. On the other hand, K-La Rivera never disappoints. Her voice pitch reminds me of Jasmine as well. Her performance is just as wonderful. Furthermore, I won’t forget Calvin Millado, too! His portrayal of the Genie is entertaining and unforgettable. What makes the show more interesting is the fact that Calvin Millado tries to make it interactive by engaging the audience to be part of the show. It truly melts my heart hearing the children laugh with us – a remarkable experience worth remembering and repeating. I just hope I could watch it again with Aiza Seguerra in it.
Overall, I cannot describe how I feel about the musical production. The cast did an outstanding performance. Even though I can follow some of the lines or dialogues similar to the movie, the cast still never fails to make me laugh and feel connected to the show. I guess it’s the way they deliver their lines and how they sing and act that capture me the most. Moreover, the staff also did a superb job in giving the show an Arabian feel to the audience. The lighting, the intricate and creative designs of props and costumes – everything is made perfect. True enough, Disney’s ALADDIN takes the young and old on a journey on a magic carpet ride to see a whole new world of Aladdin. Hands down to everyone who took part in making the show a success. In four words, Disney’s ALADDIN is: Amazing. Funny. Memorable. Nostalgic.
Buy your tickets now while it’s not yet too late! The show’s ongoing until December 9, 2012. And may you enjoy the show as much as I did.
The Cast: Tom Rodriguez as Aladdin; K-La Rivera as Jasmine; Aiza Seguerra and Calvin Millado as Genie; Jun Ofrasio as Sultan; Raul Montesa as Jafar; Bibo Reyes as Babkak; Johann dela Fuente as Omar; Jamie Wilson as Kassim; and Jimmy Marquez as Iago.