Desle McConney and Heinrich de Jager and in Aladdin.


Director: Elton John Duffy

Cast: Desle McConney, Shaun Klaasen, Toni Andrews, Carina Karcher, Divan Coetzer, Kyle Seconna and Heinrich de Jager

Venue: Nassau Theatre (Groote Schuur High School)

Until: July 12

Rating: ***

THERE are several productions in the field of children’s theatre on in Cape Town, but not to be missed is Aladdin. The Lilliput Players Children’s Theatre Company return with a new production at the Nassau Theatre to help entertain children in the winter school holidays.

This classic story of Aladdin is adapted and written by Elton John Duffy who has been working in children’s theatre for over 20 years.

The play tells the traditional story of Aladdin, as we know it, but uses a modern twist using up-to-date references and style of humour. Using a toned-down set, the production rather relies on costumes, dance, music and the performances of the actors to flesh- out the storytelling.

The story begins in the desert of Agrabah where we meet the mischievous peasant Aladdin (Heinrich de Jager). Aladdin is sent to enter the cave of wonders to retrieve the magic lamp for the evil Jafar. He becomes trapped in the cave and discovers a genie and is granted three wishes.

He uses these wishes, with the help of a magic carpet, to win the affections of Princess Jasmine (Desle McConney). When the shifty Jafar steals the lamp for himself, it’s up to Aladdin to save the day and the entire kingdom.

At 45 minutes, the play stretches long enough to keep its young audience’s attention.

The theatre was filled with kids from the ages of 2 and up, who sat attentively, listening and watching. They were moved and entertained most by the outrageous genie played by Divan Coetzer and his constant joking and boisterous laughter.

Music plays a big role in the production with catchy classics from the Disney production such as Arabian Nights and A Whole New World performed by the entire cast, with particularly noteworthy performances from McConney.

Aside from the classics, modern top-40 pop songs made relevant to the production are also used, with songs by One Direction, Bruno Mars, Britney Spears, Amy Winehouse and Eminem.

It’s a fun way to spend the morning with your little one and has enough material and humour to be enjoyed by the whole family.