Australia

Disney hits the Stage for the First Time in South Australia with Aladdin Locked in for 2019

Aladdin and Genie singing a song on stage as part of the Aladdin stage show.

After bypassing South Australia in recent years, Disney is bringing a stage production to Adelaide for the first time.

A nine-week season of Aladdin will open at the Festival Theatre in April 2019.

Australian tours of The Lion King, Mary Poppins and Beauty and the Beast skipped SA.

Festival Centre CEO Douglas Gautier said the Aladdin season had been years in the making.

“Last year we had a team from New York who came down and looked at the theatres, looked at the organisation, looked at the ticketing, how we market, what the experience would be, what the track record has been with bringing people here to this centre for musicals,” he said.

“They liked what they saw, we had lots of discussions, and then finally we got it across the line.”

He said he hoped it would set a precedent for future Disney shows.

“What it says is we are on the national circuit and these big shows are looking at Adelaide,” he said.

“This is the first wish, we’ve got a few more wishes after that.”

Actors Gareth Jacobs, Ainsley Melham and Shubshri Kandiah stand in front of an Aladdin backdrop.

Cast members were on hand for the production launch at the Festival Centre on Monday.

Gareth Jacobs will play the iconic role of the Genie.

“It’s one that Robin Williams created for the movie, so it’s massive shoes that I’ve had to fill,” he said.

“It’s one of those roles that’s an actor’s biggest dream.”

Some of the popular animal characters have been adjusted for the stage.

Genie's lamp placed in front of an Aladdin backdrop.

“I guarantee you, you won’t be disappointed,” said Ainsley Melham who plays Aladdin.

“The characters, especially Iago that talking parrot of Jafar’s, he is re-created beautifully on the stage, very funny and always there for a good laugh.”

Fresh out of university, Shubshri Kandiah has just landed the role of Jasmine, and will be hitting the stage for the first time in Brisbane next month.

“I feel very lucky and honoured to be taking such a role on stage, and so soon after uni as well, it’s very exciting,” she said.

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