(Completely unrelated, Ron Jeremy walked right by me after I snapped this. There is absolutely no punchline to that – just one of those things that happens in life. While you're snapping a photo of a live camel in a courtyard.)
(Although I should add that what followed was a slightly awkward conversation with my teen girls when they asked, "Who's Ron Jeremy?")
A press release describes the play like this:
An updated version of the classic Arabian Nights tale, in the style of a traditional British family Panto, ALADDIN AND HIS WINTER WISH is a singing, swinging and soaring adventure that features family-friendly magic, with a comedic twist, dancing (with “So You Think You Can Dance” alumni), a live pony and contemporary music. A Panto is known for its interactive style and humor that appeals to everyone from ages 2 – 102!I took my two teens with me, mainly because they're huge musical theater fans and also because they wanted to check out Jordan Fisher (Aladdin) from Disney's popular Teen Beach Movie. Let me just say they were very impressed, both with his singing and acting abilities as well as his ability to look attractive in his sleeveless shirts and harem pants.
He definitely has great stage presence, as does his costar Ashley Argota (from Nickelodeon's True Jackson VP.) The two provide a lot for the tween/teen audience to relate to with their youthful performances and energetic renditions of pop tunes from One Direction, Bruno Mars and Carly Rae Jepsen. (As did the adults - how can you not want to dance to 'Call Me Maybe'?)
Bruce Vilanch as 'Widow Twankey' was the show's centerpiece with his huge presence and over-the-top humor. His costumes alone are worth the ticket price. My daughters immediately said his performance reminded them of Edna Turnblad in Hairspray and that's no surprise – Vilanch played the part on Broadway.
But I was most excited to see Ben Vereen in his role as the Genie (even though my girls had no idea who he was.) I haven't seen him appear in anything for awhile, and it was great to see him singing and dancing (yes he still has the moves!) on stage at the Pasadena Playhouse – it made me want to run out and rent All That Jazz to see more of him and to show my daughters his early work. (Hopefully they won't ask to see the same of Ron Jeremy.)
If you want to take your family to a unique, family friendly, all ages show this holiday, definitely check out ALADDIN AND HIS WINTER WISH at the Pasadena Playhouse. Performances run through December 29 and you can click here to purchase tickets. There are also a couple of special experiences your kids can take part in, like Golden Tickets (a special on-stage sing-a-long experience during the show) and Character Breakfasts.
*My sincere apologies for the ridiculous rhyming title.
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