Disney’s Aladdin: A play to cherish, making you want to watch it again
August 4, 2017

By Gabriella Valentino

Disney’s Aladdin is a colorful spectacular with beautiful costumes and superbly choreographed dancing.

From now until Sunday, Sept. 10, Disney’s Aladdin will enchant the whole family at Broadway in Chicago at the Cadillac Palace Theatre in Chicago’s famous theatre district.

Join Aladdin as his life is turned upside down when he meets Princess Jasmine. Although a poor man, he is determined to win the princess’ hand in marriage with help from his Genie and three friends Babkak, Omar, and Kassim, in the process thwarting the Grand Vizier, advisor to Jasmine’s father, the Sultan. The fascinating performance is sure to entertain all ages with humor, spunk, and beauty.

My sister and I were fortunate to attend the play for her twenty- first birthday. We left the theatre madly in love with the performance and wishing we could watch it again. We were in awe of the masterpiece we just experienced. It was virtually all we talked about for the next three days.

Aladdin is brought to you by a brilliant team of folks who, collaboratively, have won 20 Tony awards. Director and choreographer Casey Nicholaw has mastered the art of story telling through dance and playwrighting. The choreography was something I had never experienced live before. The ensemble was enchanting with their perfect choreography and simultaneous magic tricks on stage.

All five original songs from the animated film, as well as new songs featured for the play, were performed. Watching the actors perform such beautiful music live was breathtaking.

The costumes were some of my favorite parts of the performance. Gregg Barnes, the costume designer, shocked me with every single costume. All 337 costumes were carefully hand-crafted into a shimmery parade of art. This particular show has 100 more costumes than any other Disney production. I was not surprised to learn that it took Barnes six hours to draw and paint each sketch based on how much detail the costumes contained.

In just the finale alone, each man’s gold costume required 8,644 Swarovski crystals to complete. Additionally, Jasmine’s wedding dress weighed twelve pounds from all the beading. The speed of the costume changes was especially impressive. To be exact, 102 costume changes occur in less than one minute and 52 costume changes occur in less than 30 seconds. Some of these costume changes take place on stage right before your eyes. It happens in a flash—faster than a blink.

The backdrops in Aladdin were nothing less than breathtaking. Two scenes that really stood out were the Cave of Wonders and A Whole New World. As soon as the backdrop changed as Aladdin entered the Cave of Wonders, the entire audience let out an audible gasp. The gold, gothic architecture of the details inside the cave were jaw dropping. The gold finishing on the cave was the same as C-3PO in the Star Wars films.

The scene in which Aladdin and Jasmine sing A Whole New World was another one of my favorites. The stage was illuminated by a starry night backdrop as Aladdin and Jasmine took a ride on the magic carpet. Every scene was full of color and energy.

I was so pleased with the performance of Aladdin. It is a play that I will always cherish.

Cadillac Palace is at 151 W. Randolph St. Log on to www.broadwayinchicago.com.