‘Aladdin’ reviewed by Gordon the Optom

by July 23, 2018

‘Aladdin’, The Disney Theatrical Production of the musical has hit Perth. It can be seen at the Crown Theatre in Burswood.

NOT a real review, more of a comment on the amazing experience.

The show is two and a half hours, and is suitable for all ages. I saw some two or three year olds there, but kids of five or six upwards would appreciate it more.

The direction and choreography (Casey Nicholaw, in Australia by Benjamin Osborne, Ben Clare and Madeleine MacKenzie) was spectacular. In costumes (Janet Hine) of bright colours, gold and glitz the dancers’ routines were packed with energy, and more than a touch of humour. Blink and you could miss several costume changes!

The lighting (Gavan Swift, Ainslie McClurg) and sound effects (Michael Waters, Andrew Poppleton, Ben Nelson) complex and amazing.

The singing was clear, and all of the leads had excellent voices with powerful delivery. The music (director – Geoffrey Castles) and orchestration (Danny Troob) were first class.

Bob Crowley’s scenic design is possibly the best ever. The street scenes have basic brown buildings, which concertinaed out into a multi-storey structure (mechanics by Imtiyaaz Jackson, Hugh Calton, Brett Nielsen). Then we find ourselves in the Sultan’s palace, with incredible lacework walls – like a doily (if you are old enough to remember them). Just after recovering from the sumptuous palace, you are in the cave with silver and gold walls and stalactites where illusions and pure magic take place. The set of the century?

The magic carpet ride (touring flys – Michaela Sturgess, Chris Supanz) rotated and covered the whole stage area – outstanding. Then the inventive pyrotechnics from Nicholas Wagstaff also left me wondering, ‘how did that happen?’

The part of Aladdin was superbly played by Ainsley Melham and Jasmine by Shubshri Kandiah, two WAAPA graduates. The tremendous, overtly camp Genie (Gareth Jacobs) was hilarious.

The tickets weren’t particularly cheap, but you could see where every cent was spent.

This is the brightest, most full-filled musical ever. With singing and effects that will have you gasping. A VERY special production, with a large number of local theatre performers and crew.