Review: Disneys Aladdin at Sunderland Empire

Review: Disneys Aladdin at Sunderland Empire

Grab a lamp, Make a wish and get on your magic carpet to the Sunderland Empire as the UK tour of Disney’s “Aladdin” has arrived in the North East.

This show is a of magic carpet ride of music, and storytelling that has captured the hearts of audiences bringing the film to stage. From impressive set designs to the fantastic cast performances, every aspect of this production has been put together to bring the well loved tale to life for the enjoyment of audiences old and new.

Gavin Adams, playing the title role of Aladdin, brings an energetic and vibrant feel to the role, giving us a very charismatic performance, he is instantly likeable. His portrayal of the streetwise yet kind-hearted hero is both engaging and authentic, making it easy for us to root for him from the very beginning. His chemistry with Desmonda Cathabel, who plays Princess Jasmine, is also natural and endearing.

Cathabel is no traditional damsel awaiting a prince, presenting a Jasmine who is strong, independent, and full of dreams, seeing beyond the walls of the palace she feels entrapped within. Cathabel’s voice is particularly lovely, with her rendition of “A Whole New World” filled with emotion and grace.

Yeukayi Ushe as our Genie of the lamp is the stand out performer and steals the show with his unlimited energy and comedic timing. His performance of “Friend Like Me” is a high-energy display of talent, combining humour, impressive vocals and dance, in a number that brings the house down just prior to the interval. Ushe’s Genie is a powerful presence and a source of warmth, serving as the heart of the production.

Adam Strong’s portrayal of Jafar brings the perfect balance of menace and flair to the villainous role for every tale needs a villain. Devious in his ambition he seeks to oust Jasmine from the throne and will do whatever he can to make it himself. Audiences withheld any natural urge to boo until the end of the show!

The supporting cast, including the actors playing the Sultan, Iago, Aladdins friends and the royal guards, contribute also to the story’s richness, ensuring that no moment on stage is without its charm or intrigue.

The staging of “Aladdin” is typical Disney. Detailed and large scale! The creative vision behind this production is amazing. The set transitions seamlessly from the bustling streets of Agrabah to the luxurious confines of the palace and the dark, ominous lair of Jafar. The use of bright colours, detailed patterns, and dynamic lighting create a visual spectacle that takes the audience into a world where magic feels real. The sheer scale and detail of the staging is fantastic and even more impressive the stage allows for it to be interchanged throughout so quickly.

We can’t talk about the staging without talking about the costumes either. A dazzling array of colours, textures, and designs. Each outfit, from Aladdin’s streetwear to Jasmine’s royal gowns are meticulously detailed, adding to the characters’ depth and the story’s authenticity. The Genie’s costumes, in particular reflect his larger-than-life personality and magical essence.

The choreography is dynamic and energetic, capturing each scene perfectly. From the high-energy marketplace chase to the intricate dance numbers in the palace, the movement on stage is a vital part of the storytelling, bringing the music and the characters’ emotions to life.

One of the most breathtaking moments is the magic carpet ride. A combination of special effects, lighting, and innovative staging creates the illusion of flight, making “A Whole New World” a truly appealing experience. Disney always produce great effects on stage so credit to the technical team’s skill and creativity, as they manage to bring one of the most iconic scenes from the film to life on stage.

Disney’s “Aladdin” is a must-see production that offers something for everyone. Whether you’re a fan of the original film or experiencing the story for the first time, the show’s blend of humor, romance, and adventure is sure to enchant. The cast’s performances, combined with the stunning staging, set design, costumes, and choreography, make this production a standout in the world of musical theatre.

Dates: 15 Feb – 10 Mar 2024


*A £3.65 transaction fee applies to online bookings. 

Discover more from Home

Subscribe now to keep reading and get access to the full archive.

Continue reading