Disney's 'Aladdin' getting the Broadway treatment
In was inevitable really, and quite surprising in fact that Disney would wait this long to bring one of their most successful movie franchises to the stage, but Aladdin is making it's Broadway debut in 2014.
Thomas Schumacher, President of Disney Theatrical Productions, has promised 'a full-length, big song musical with big dance numbers.' and that the final two-act Aladdin will build on the 1992 film but will add new songs from original composer/songwriter Alan Menken, additional characters (Aladdin's getting some streetrat chums) and, as one should hope, plenty of magic carpet riding. The creative team involved are all Broadway heavyweights, with six-time Tony winning scenic designer Bob Crowley, three-time Tony winning lighting designer Natasha Katz, two-time Tony winning costume designer Gregg Barnes and sound designer Ken Travis all on board to design, with The Book of Mormen's Casey Nicholaw set to direct and choreograph. Clearly Disney are taking no chances and are trying to make this as strong as possible.
The one issue that has always thwarted a stage version of Aladdin though, and is still a major risk, has been how to bring the role of Robin Williams' iconic Genie to life. Instead of having him all translucent and ghost-like, or simply a projection on stage, Schumacher has said he'll be taking the form of a 'Cab Calloway-styled vaudevillian', which from a far bit of Googling leads to an image of something not dissimilar to the Genie's look in the Friend Like Me number, all top hat and tails. Reservations are still firmly in place though, as no one can knock Robin Williams out of our minds. Still, at least we're pretty much guaranteed a tap number.
Aladdin will play its pre-Broadway engagement at Toronto's Ed Mirvish Theatre from November 13, 2013 to January 12, 2014, before moving to Broadway's New Amsterdam Theatre, replacing another Disney favourite 'Mary Poppins', which closes this March.
Story by EI Team | 09:00 | Wednesday 23rd January 2013 | Theatre
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