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Disney’s Aladdin - UK Tour Review by John Murray

Updated: Nov 5, 2023

15 million people have seen this spectacular stage production and it's arrived for a short residency here in the capital until the 18th of November. Disney's Aladdin is a magical production to see at Edinburgh Playhouse on its first stop of a UK tour until January 2025.


When you have the Disney brand involved, you know it will likely be something special and gladly it is, with each song a fully choreographed visual production in itself. They are all big songs from the pens of Alan Menken, Howard Ashman, and Sir Tim Rice.  Having just returned from New York City where the show has been on Broadway for over 9 years and is billed as Broadway’s Biggest Party, this production excelles the same brilliance as the version across the Atlantic. The success of Disney's Aladdin is truly remarkable with 11 productions currently playing worldwide.


There are no headline stars here and they share equal billing, but Yeukayi Ushe as the Genie deserves the ovation he received for his wit, energy and charisma. Gavin Adams plays the central character Aladdin while Desmonda Cathabel is Princess Jasmine who finds more to life than just wealth as they both encounter the evil Jafar played by Adam Strong.



The iconic heart-stopping moment though is of course A Whole New World, made even more memorable as it is performed with an actual flying carpet rising and revolving above the stage and shows why the iconic original 1992 animated movie version won the Academy Awards Oscar statue for Best Original Song. The showstopper in the first act though is when the Genie performs Friend Like Me.  The colour, the costumes and the unparalleled choreography make Friend Like Me stand out with the extended applause richly deserved. Reminiscent of a Busby Berkley 1930s routine, the irony here is that the US version plays appropriately on 42nd Street.  


Adult musical theatre fans will enjoy the staging and the music and there are enough one-liners and jokes here to raise a smile.  Young fans will enjoy the glorious spectacle and with the production being in the Disney universe, the merchandise is first class.  From affordable pins and key chains to dressed teddy bears and even a replica gold genie at £35 which will be treasured for years to come.



Overall Disney's Aladdin is a musical for all the family. It's full of upbeat memorable musical numbers, beautiful sets and costumes, as well as a cast that would rival any Broadway production. Broadway has arrived in Edinburgh.



This production has been rated ☆☆☆☆



Disney's Aladdin runs at Edinburgh Playhouse until the 18th of November before embarking on a UK Tour until 2025. To book for Edinburgh Playhouse, see here: https://www.atgtickets.com/shows/disneys-aladdin/edinburgh-playhouse/. For further venues visit: https://www.disneytickets.co.uk/aladdin-musical-tour-tickets

 


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