Disney's "Aladdin" is headed to the stage, but at this time Broadway is not in the cards. Variety reports that the film, which featured a score by Alan Menken, Tim Rice and the late Howard Ashman, will be presented at Disney's California Adventure in Anaheim beginning Dec. 9.
Chad Beguelin, of The Rhythm Club fame, has supplied a new book, and opera director Francesca Zambello will helm the production, which will also feature choreography by Lynn Taylor-Corbett. Aladdin will mark the first major project for Anne Hamburger, the executive vice-president of Walt Disney Parks & Resorts.
Hamburger, the former artistic director of the La Jolla Playhouse and En Garde Arts, told the industry paper that, as of now, there are no plans to mount the show outside of the Disney theme parks. "That is up to Tom Schumacher and Michael Eisner," she said. "If it works to make it into a two hour show and take it to Broadway, they will. But my focus is on the theme parks."
Arnold J. Mungioli is the casting director for the musical, which will be performed seven days a week and will employ two crews and two casts.
Written by Roger Allers and Ron Clements and directed by Clements and John Muser, Disney's 1992 "Aladdin" featured the voices of Scott Weinger, Robin Williams, Linda Larkin, Jonathan Freeman, Frank Welker, Gilbert Gottfried, Douglas Seale, Bruce Adler, Brad Kane and Lea Salonga. It won the 1993 Academy Award for Best Original Score. —By Andrew Gans