Aladdin Junior, the Lower School musical, lit up the theater with jazz, magic and a golden lamp on two Arabian nights, Jan. 25 and 26. With close to 40 castmates, the young students put on a spectacular production. Students from fourth through sixth had the opportunity to shine in their role, all due to the behind-the-scenes work done by Upper School students.
Seventh grader Maia Fraunberger has helped assist during the entire project: Not only a student choreographer, Fraunberger helped assist backstage with the students. She attended a paint call to help design the sets, as well as attending every rehearsal to help the actors prepare in the production of Aladdin Jr. “One of my favorite parts was watching and working with the kids. It was incredible to see them bond and create long lasting friendships,” said Fraunberger. “I enjoy the excitement of quick changes and scene changes. Aladdin Jr. was truly an amazing journey and experience.” With a staff of over 15, the tech crew was able to pull off quick changes and set changes as briefly as one minute.
As part of the deck crew, seventh grader Madeline Zhuravel helped with Aladdin by moving set pieces and helping performers backstage. “My favorite parts were definitely the tech team… but also the kids I got to work with,” said Zhuravel, “I adored working backstage, and would do it again in a heartbeat!”
Another stand-out aspect of the musical was the set-design, which was specifically designed for the play by Upper School students. The beautiful sceneries and set-design included over four locations, straight from the movie. This included a “talking” Cave of Wonders (voiced by Anya Cohen), and a moveable magic carpet. This illusion was created by having Ms. Gergerich, the carpentry teacher, hide below the carpet and control the carpet’s movement with dials. The vibrant blue and fiery orange colors of the shops of Agrabah contrasted with the dark eerie colors of the desert dunes. Ms. MW, the theater tech coordinator, hosted a paint call to help design the sets on Jan. 21. She said it was a great experience being able to work on such a fast-past show with great music.
The show stood out not only due to the help from Upper School, but with the actors themselves. With wise-cracking jokes from the Genie (Ella Colarte Delgado) and the sinister cackle of Jafar (Maya Chaplik), the show never dwindled in excitement. The moment you enter the musical, you truly get immersed in the magical land of Agrabah.
The vibrant costumes and scenery highlights the diversity of the city of Agrabah. Oftentimes, those from the palace wear gold headpieces, while those from the marketplace wear silks and cloths to distinguish themselves. (Photo/Emma Colarte Delgado)
During “Friend Like Me,” Genie and Aladdin illuminate the possibilities of infinite wishes. Luisa Krauss (left of carpet, back) said “ I loved the ‘Friend Like Me’ dance, it had so many jumps! I was so sad when it was over, but all good things come to an end.” Many dance sequels were choreographed by freshman Heidi Klink and included action sequences like cartwheels. (Photo/CADY)
Each student had the opportunity to bow individually before the group bows. Sixth grader Ella Colarte Delgado (bowing) said that “I loved being a part of the show, especially with all the energy I could show! Bowing made me sad because it meant the show was over.” (Photo/CADY)
The whole cast takes a bow on closing night. This musical included show-stopping performances by rag-tag street-rat Aladdin (Daniel Zelfman), cheeky palace darling Jasmine (Olivia Rosenburg) and the blue powerhouse Genie (Ella Colarte Delgado). (Photo/Emma Colarte Delgado)
Ms. G climbs below the custom-made magic carpet and hides behind its black curtain. She was able to control the prop from underneath the carpet with controls, moving it from stage left to right. (Photo/Johanna Fraunberger)
Actors, from left to right, Ella Colarte Delgado, Olivia Rosenberg, Luisa Krauss, Maya Chaplik, Daniel Zelfman and Luca Rodriguez had the opportunity to have a meet-and-greet with Pre-K 4 and Kindergarten students after performing for them. (Photo/Johanna Fraunberger)