Hello and welcome to Blogmas day 21! I’ve been working on this post all day, hence why it’s a tad late, but I’m super excited for you guys to read it! It’s been a while since I’ve been to the theatre, with my last trip being to see Riverdance in Manchester’s Apollo theatre to write a review for The Mancunion.
Over in Australia you can get super cheap tickets for shows if you get them from the box office two hours before the performance starts. As Maya and I are on a traveller’s budget we thought why not do that for Aladdin at Sydney’s Capitol Theatre, so we queued up two hours before rush tickets went on sale and ended up paying $45 for seats that would have normally been $195. When we were seated in the theatre we realised how lucky we were to get such seats. We were only 8 rows from the front and smack bang in the middle with a perfect view of the entire stage!
As the lights dimmed the orchestra played the familiar sound of Arabian Nights for the opening number. Ainsley Melham and Arielle Jacobs, who were playing Aladdin and Princess Jasmine, respectively, really did their roles justice through pitch perfect vocals and their portrayal of their character’s forbidden love.
Although the musical is an adaption of the original Disney film there were loads of new songs to make the show flow more smoothly and keep the audience entranced. ‘Babkak, Omar, Aladdin, Kassim’ had me bouncing around in my seat at its catchy chorus and questionable dance moves. Instead of having Aladdin’s monkey sidekick, Abu was replaced by the three troublemaking companions featured in the aforementioned musical number. This brought a refreshing feeling to the show as their humorous input could not have been done by keeping the non-talking original character, and their rescue mission song “High Adventures” was actually one of my favourites. Iago, Jafar’s dastardly parrot, was also replaced by a sneaky right-hand man who both Maya and I thought was hilarious.
‘Friend Like Me’ was by far the most spectacular scene and longest musical number of the show. Michael James Scott played a perfect sassy Genie, and the modern, extended twist on the song along with cameo lines from other Disney classics had the crowd laughing and singing along. The stage was set with sequins and jewels to imitate the Cave of Wonders, and there was always something new and shiny that caught your eye.
As a child I always loved the ‘A Whole New World’ scene of the 1992 classic, and as it was brought to life on stage every audience member was left mesmerised by the breathtaking magic carpet illusion on a backdrop of a starry night sky.
I felt that the final confrontation between Aladdin and Jafar was short lived and seemed quite rushed, but nevertheless that didn’t put a dampener on the rest of the show, and both of us came out of the theatre gushing about how great the night was and how we would gladly go see it again before it closes.
Obviously I couldn’t take any pictures of the performance itself but check out the few photos I did get to take throughout the day below!
Aladdin is showing at the Capitol Theatre, Sydney, until the 26th of March 2017.
Until tomorrow guys,