Aladdin, Prince Edward Theatre – Review

Aladdin, Prince Edward Theatre – Review
Aladdinmain.jpg

It's one of Disney's best-loved films full of genial genies and magic carpet rides.

So it's no wonder theatre producers thought they'd struck a cave of treasures when they had the idea to turn Disney's Aladdin into an all-singing, all-dancing stage musical.

And they were right – Aladdin delivers a never-ending cavern of delights that sparkles as bright as the smiles on stage and in the audience.

assetredirector.php

Normally the preserve of Christmas pantos, here Aladdin gets the complete West End makeover. Although there are still hints of the panto asides, mainly from baddie Jafar and his wicked sidekick Iago – the only bit of the show I wasn't too stuck on – there are, mericfully, no 'he's behind yous' over here.

Instead, big musical numbers, some taken from the film and some created especially for the stage show, punctuate the story of the young, poor street urchin Aladdin who finds himself in a cave of gold, with the larger-than-life genie at his beck and call for three very special wishes.

But as he works to woo his heart's desire, the beautiful, fiercely independent, Princess Jasmine, Aladdin must overcome forces both beyond his control and within himself before he can have his final wish.

assetredirector.php

Friend Like Me – possibly one of the most spectacular things I've ever seen on a stage – more than earns the cost of your ticket with about ten minutes of absolute musical mania, complete with a Disney karoake, magic tricks a-plenty and lots of Puttin' on the Ritz-style high-kicking. The two minute-plus standing ovation that followed this mid first half number said all you needed to know about how phenomenal it was.

And the claps continued, not least for the set designs and costumes that were frankly, in a whole new world, of their own. It was impossible not to be bewitched, whatever your age, by the flying carpet ride around the starry night sky of the Prince Edward Theatre stage. A moment of real Disney-like magic!

The genie, played to full camp effect with a dazzlingly glittery head and all the sassy moves by Trevor Dion Nicholas, truly brought the house down, while Britain's Got Talent's Dean Jean-Wilson and ex-Sugababes singer and former Eurovision hopeful, Jade Ewen, made for a sweetly sensational Aladdin and Princess Jasmine.

A real treat of a night out that all the family will love and go home singing along to. Several days later, I'm still singing A Friend Like Me on repeat!