Chanukah shows are opening all over Israel and Aladdin and Princess Jasimine (אלאדין והנסיכה יסמין) is a particular treat. Family-friendly and full of charm, the show delivers with charismatic performances and great music. While not the Disney songs you remember from the movie (which celebrates its 25th anniversary this year!), the soundtrack, especially written for this show is rich and memorable.
Popular TV personalities fill the cast: young ones who watch Israeli kids TV will instantly recognize Tuvia Tzafir – better known as “Saba Tuvia” – as the Genie. He’s a much-loved character in real life and gets most of the funny lines in this production. Asaf Hertz is a winning and charming Aladdin, and he and Adi Himlavlevi – a fierce heroine as Princess Jasmine who knows her own mind – make great leads.
Former Israeli Eurovision hopeful Hovi Star camps it up to 100 as the villainous Jafar and he’s clearly enjoying every minute of his time on stage. Michael Lewis rounds out the cast with an athletic and fun performance as the prince who Jasmine is set to marry, until Aladdin gets in the way.
Standards of production, from staging to costume, from lighting to sound are all very good. The show opens in Tel Aviv and will perform right across the country. Note that the performance is in Hebrew – and it’s the story that you remember so it’s very easy to follow.