Broadway show ‘Aladdin’ turns out to be just as enchanting as the movie


Melanie Robertson Photography

Aladdin helps Princess Jasmine step off the magic carpet.

The Broadway show Aladdin, now playing at the Pantages theatre through March 31, is just as enchanting and magical as the 1992 Disney animated movie. The actors and actresses all embody the story’s characters extremely well. Abu, Aladdin’s pet monkey and one of the most beloved characters in the animated film, is unfortunately cut from this stage production and replaced with three of Aladdin’s human pals who are not part of the movie. However, the producers get creative with Jafar’s pet parrot, Iago, and include him as a human who acts and speaks in exactly the same manner as the parrot from the movie.

Although the musical is based on the Disney movie Aladdin, it does not strictly mirror the movie storyline, and there are a few interesting twists. The show is more like a comedy; jokes and silly moments are thrown into the story, with the genie being a much more comedic, funny and spirited character than in the movie. There is also a more modern aspect to the musical with a bit of feminist commentary included. When the sultan confronts Princess Jasmine and expresses his frustration over her not choosing a suitor to marry, Princess Jasmine loudly exclaims that she should be able to rule the kingdom without a man by her side.

All of the character’s costumes are beautiful, extravagant and simply breathtaking. The rich people’s elegant, fanciful clothing do not stop sparkling under the light, while the ordinary people’s festive, colorful clothing helps create a sense of culture in the fictional city of Agrabah. The sets and backgrounds of the scenes are as magnificent as the costumes and wonderfully capture the beauty of the city, the palace and the glittering Cave of Wonders.

The props are stunning as well, especially the magic carpet that really does seem like magic on stage. The carpet flies across the stage for a few minutes with Princess Jasmine and Aladdin sitting on it, and even when the stage is brightly lit, no strings or machinery operating the carpet are visible to the audience. The scenes involving the carpet are perfectly orchestrated and truly bring the idea of magic to life.

The entire performance is marvelous and could not be designed any better. The Broadway musical of Aladdin serves as an excellent way for teenagers and young adults to reconnect with their past and relive a favorite childhood movie. Although everyone over a certain age knows that magic is not real, this well-organized production, especially the mystery of the magic carpet, puts a hint of doubt in the audience’s mind and leaves them to wonder whether magic is, indeed, real.