Disney’s Aladdin the Broadway Musical is already playing for almost 26 months now. That was a good moment for Broadway.com to sit down with the four leading actors, Adam Jacobs, Courtney Reed, Jonathan Freeman, James Monroe Iglehart, sat down with Richard Ridge discussing the 1st year of sucess of Aladdin on Broadway. They talk how they experienced how the show developed from the Seattle and Toronto versions that had trail runs a couple of years ago to the megahit the show’s become on Broadway. I loved hearing Jonathan Freeman telling about voicing Jafar for 23 years and now actually bringing the character to live on stage. But also it’s touching to hear them speak how fans express their fandom to them in fanmail and on social media some haven’t even seen the movie but still love the show and went back and watched the “source material”.
But most of all I think it’s amazing to hear that these people aren’t sick and tired of each other after 8 shows a week for a year and then even going back 5 year further to 2010 when the show was still being developed and they where already on broad and having a blast together.
It was Press day for Broadway’s newest musical comedy and Broadway World got a word with writer/lyrist Chad Beguelin and director Casey Nicholaw of the show as well as the four leads. Adam Jacobs, Courtney Reed, James Monroe Iglehart and Jonathan Freemanl They talk about how exceed they are to play these characters and word with these people. The usual stuff people say on working on new shows or movies. But Chad did mention a major change to the show. Babkak, Omar and Kassim are no longer the narrators.
In last years 5th avenue these characters where besides Aladdin’s pals also the narrators and so helped move along the show between scene scene changes breaking the so called 4th wall by interacting with the audience. Also they sang various reprises of Arabian Nights that where brought back from the cutting floor. You see Alan and Howard originally wrote a hand full of reprises to the movie’s opening song but as the characters where cut from the film the songs where too. Personally I applaud the idea to restore this ordinal version making the show, from what I read and seen, more funny.
The Aladdin Musical blog has a video and photo’s of the cast from Disney’s Aladdin: Broadway’s New Musical Comedy. Â The actors the gave life to the 3 lead characters, Al, Jas and Genie, in the 5th avenue regional production last year are back and eager.Â Adam Jacobs as Aladdin, Courtney Reed as Princess Jasmine and James Monroe Iglehart as Genie. And of course Mr. Jafar himselfÂ Jonathan Freeman is back as the evil wizard.
The guys behind the Tiara Talk Show talked with the lead voice actors of Aladdin, Scott Wienger, Linda Larkin andÂ JonathanÂ Freeman about how they ended up being the voice of popular Disney characters for almost 2 decades, how they got the part, Â why they love their work and working for Disney in general. There’s some inside talk Â about things like Â the Music behind the Magic 4 CD box thatÂ containsÂ demo recordings for songs that didn’t make into the final film, the inside joke of Scott Weinger dressing up as Aladdin in that Full House 2 part episode when the family went on holiday to Walt Disney World. And other stuff like the musical stage show in DisneyÂ CaliforniaÂ adventures.
Jonathan Freeman (Jafar) and Don Darryl Rivera (Iago) preformed the cut song “Why Me” as promotion for the Aladdin: A Stage Musical show.
“Why Me” was one of the many attempts to give the villian his own song, like it was pretty common around that time in Disney animated films. Ursula got Pour Unfortunate Souls and Gaston got a song carrying his name. In Aladdin’s case, according to the direction audio commentary on the DVD, that part of the movie underwent allot of rewriting to get a song for Jafar there, also partly because of Jonathan FreemanÂ´s great singing voice, and Alan Menken and Tim Rice penned a few songs including this one. At the end it was decided that it would slow down the movie and it was simply to late into the film for a full blown song and so the production crew decided to stick with a reprise of Prince Ali. Great to see the musical production grew found a way to use it. CanÂ´t wait to see how Jonathan looks in full costume.