Sunday, 6 April 2014

Opening Night - Direct from the Purple Carpet

Sorry for the lack of updates recently, after seeing Aladdin we spent some time with relatives in America so I only got back home earlier this week.  So without further ado it's time to play a little catch up, starting with the Aladdin's Purple Carpet Opening Night!

Following a very wet Wednesday night the sun was shining on Thursday as Disney Theatrical rolled out the purple carpet at the New Amsterdam Theatre for Aladdin's Broadway opening.

Jane and I arrived early enough to watch as the carpet was rolled out, pulled up and rolled out again to make sure that everything was just right for when the evening's guests started to arrive.

As well as getting a great spot to watch as everyone arrived, getting there early also meant I had the opportunity to briefly meet and thank Disney Theatrical's Dennis Crowley.  Back in 2011 it was Dennis who put me in touch with Bridget Summers at The 5th Avenue Theatre for Aladdin's Pilot Production, truly changing this blog for the better.

The first to arrive on the purple carpet was writer and lyricist Chad Beguelin;

He was soon joined by others from Aladdin's creative team;

Composer and Disney Legend Alan Menken

Composer Alan Menken and Writer/Lyricist Chad Beguelin

Musical Supervisor/Incidental Music/Vocal Arranger/Conductor Michael Kosarin and his family

Lighting Designer Natasha Katz and her family
Director/Choreographer Casey Nicholaw and Hair Designer Josh Marquette

Walt Disney CEO and Chairman Bob Iger;

Bob Iger with his wife Willow Bay

Head of Disney Animation and Pixar Studios John Lasseter;

John Lasseter with his wife Nancy Lasseter

And a host of Disney's Broadway stars both past, present and future;

Gavin Lee, Bert in Mary Poppins on Broadway and in the West End

Andy Richardson and Luca Padovan, Crutchie and Les in Newsies on Broadway

Corey Cott, Jack Kelly in Newsies on Broadway

Liana Hunt, Katherine in Newsies on Broadway

Josh Strickland, Broadway's Tarzan

Josh Strickland (Broadway's Tarzan) and fiancĂ© Todd DuBail who played both Clayton in Tarzan and Kassim in Aladdin at the Tuacahn

Zachary Unger and Luca Padovan, Les in Newsies on Broadway

Andrew Keenan-Bolger, the original Omar from Aladdin's 5th Avenue Pilot Production and Newsies' original Crutchie, with Submissions Only co-creator Kate Wetherhead 

John Tartaglia, Lumiere in Broadway's Beauty and the Beast and Genie in The Muny's Aladdin

Laura Michelle Kelly, Mary Poppins on Broadway and in the West End

Harvey Fierstein (book writer, Newsies) with Gabriel Ebert

Patrick Page, Scar in Broadway's The Lion King and soon to be Frollo in The Hunchback of Notre Dame

Patrick Page and Michael Arden, Frollo and Quasimodo in the upcoming The Hunchback of Notre Dame

Sierra Boggess and Sherie Rene Scott, Ariel and Ursula from Broadway's The Little Mermaid

So the guests had arrived.  Backstage the cast and crew were ready;

It was show time!

Then it was time for the cast to take their well earned bows!

The Cast of Aladdin, Photo from Zimbio

You can find many more curtain call photos (as well as professional purple carpet arrival photos) at Zimbio, Playbill and Broadway World (purple carpet and curtain call).

For me, the best part of the purple carpet experience was getting to shake hands with and say thank you to Chad Beguelin and Casey Nicholaw before they met with the press photographers.  It was fantastic moment for me, just to be able to say thank you to two of the men responsible for finally bringing Aladdin to the Broadway stage.

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