Last night, Alan Menken held an intimate performance as part of the ‘Destination D’ event at the Disneyland Resort, held by Disney D23, the official fan club of The Walt Disney Company (NYSE:DIS). After wowing the attending crowd with music from decades of his Tony, Grammy and Oscar-winning career (he holds the record for having the most Oscars (living)), he closed the show with ‘Proud of Your Boy,’ a song that was intended for the original 1992 film, but was cut due to story changes.
It was when introducing the song that Menken mentioned the musical is currently being tweaked for a Broadway run, according to reports from attendees. A new staged version of the musical was produced by Disney Theatrical and premiered at the 5th Avenue Theatre in Seattle last year, but no aspirations for Broadway were anywhere to be found — at best, a national tour; at worst, licensing to regional theater. Howard Ashman’s sister, Sarah, wrote about the musical on her tribute blog, Part Of Your World, and some of the changes that were incorporated into it that deviate it from the beloved animated film. In addition to ‘Proud of Your Boy,’ three other songs that were initially cut have been reinstated along: Call Me A Princess; High Adventure; and Babkak, Omar, Aladdin, Kassim, which brings along the three non-Aladdin characters with it.
After a brief run at The Muny in July, the musical is now in production at the Tuacahn Amphitheatre in Utah through mid-October and has managed to incorporate the use of 3D glasses for the Cave of Wonders and Genie’s ‘Friend Like Me’ song, courtesy of former Walt Disney Imagineer Geoff Puckett, according to the fan-based Aladdin Musical blog.
Still, prior to last night, there wasn’t so much as an inkling that it would soon find itself on the Great White Way. Actually, an inkling may in fact have been all there was, as a thread on Broadway World points to a cryptic message at the end of a recent video update from 5th Avenue Theatre (UPDATE – The upcoming musical in question was ‘A Christmas Story,’ so video removed):
Photo by @jellicle0
UPDATE #1 – 8/17/12 – Since there is so much interest in the article, we are now adding an audio recording from that evening’s performance in which Menken mentions the shift to Broadway. Had most anyone else said it, we would chalk it up to confusing Broadway as a generic theatrical production, but Menken probably knows the difference by now. So without further ado, here is Menken performing ‘Somebody’s Got Your Back’ and ‘Proud of Your Boy’ from Disney’s Aladdin:
As a post script, we have also received reports that employees at Tuacahn are freely talking about working closely with Disney Theatrical to bring the musical directly to Broadway.
We are pleased to join forces with Disney D23, the official fan club for Disney fans, to offer one lucky Stitch Kingdom reader a pair of tickets to what is easily one of the most exciting events to date — Destination D: 75 Years of Disney Animated Features being held at the Disneyland Resort on August 11 & 12, 2012!
This very special two-day event honors more than seven decades of rich animation history, from Snow White and the Seven Dwarfs through Wreck-It Ralph and features many of the company’s luminaries from both the worlds of animation and Disney Parks. Speakers include the newly announced directing team of John Musker & Ron Clements (The Little Mermaid, The Princess and the Frog), producer Don Hahn (Beauty and the Beast, Frankenweenie), Burny Mattinson (Sleeping Beauty, Winnie the Pooh), Eric Goldberg (Pocahontas, Fantasia 2000), Andreas Deja (The Lion King, Lilo & Stitch), Walt Disney Imagineering’s Tony Baxter and Eddie Sotto, Tinker Bell live action model Margaret Kerry, voice over actress Kathryn Beaumont, legendary composer Alan Menken, a performance by Dick Van Dyke and the Vantastix and many, many more with even more announcements to come!
Tickets to attend the event, being held at the Disneyland Hotel, are $225 each, but one lucky reader will win a pair of them for free (transportation not included, nor is theme park admission which is not required to attend the event) — that’s a $450 value for an experience that will truly be priceless. The awarded tickets are non-refundable, non-exchangeable and non-transferable so please ensure you will be able to attend this once-in-a-lifetime event.
For more information on the event including a full list of panelists and schedules (subject to change) and to purchase tickets (limited quantities remaining), visit the official event page. To enter for your chance to attend, fill out the form below:
Remember, entries can be made daily, so be sure to enter every day as the contest will run through July 25! Each entry will increase your chance to win tickets to Disney D23 presents Destination D: 75 Years of Disney Animated Features.
The hosts of “The View” will introduce the world television premiere performance of the brand new Disney stage musical, “NEWSIES,” adapted from the popular Disney film starring Christian Bale, live, Monday, September 19 at 11 am ET on ABC. Academy Award-winning composer Alan Menken, who wrote music for the 1992 motion picture Newsies and has won eight Oscars for such memorable scores as Beauty and the Beast, The Little Mermaid, and Pocahontas, is a featured guest and will help introduce the cast performance medley of both “Santa Fe” and “Seize The Day.” “NEWSIES” is presented by Paper Mill Playhouse.
The musical is based on the 1899 true story of a courageous group of scrappy newsboys who become unlikely heroes when they rally forces to fight an unscrupulous newspaper tycoon.
“NEWSIES” features a book by Harvey Firestein, lyrics by Jack Feldman and music by Alan Menken. Based on the Disney film written by Bob Tzudiker and Noni White. It is directed by Jeff Calhoun and choreographed by Christopher Gattelli.
“NEWSIES” will premiere at Paper Mill Playhouse, 22 Brookside Drive, Millburn, NJ, 07041. For tickets and information, please go to www.papermill.org. Performances begin Thursday, September 15 at 7:00 p.m. and run through October 16.
To be honest, this video could have made the rounds before and we had just missed it, but Walt Disney Studios UK has just published this five minute medley of songs from Disney animated classics, performed by their composer, Disney Legend Alan Menken. In the video, Menken performs songs from The Little Mermaid, Hercules, Pocahontas, Beauty and the Beast and — of course…
Aladdin on which Menken is in Seattle, WA, putting final touches on the all new musical being produced by Disney Theatrical and making its stage debut at the 5th Avenue Theatre later this week. According to Howard Ashman’s sister, Sarah, the staged musical will bring to life more of Ashman’s original vision for the film’s story rather than what was released in the movie theaters. This means the inclusion of songs written by Ashman-Menken that had been cut from the film, such as ‘Proud of Your Boy’ which Ashman wrote as a promise Aladdin was making to his mother.
Nominees for best original song will be performed this year at the 83rd Annual Academy Awards hosted by the Academy of Motion Picture Arts and Sciences on Sunday, February 27, 2011. Today, producers Bruce Cohen and Don Mischer announced the artists who will perform the nominated songs on the Kodak Theatre stage on Oscar Night.
Disney will see both of its nominated songs, ‘I See the Light’ from Walt Disney Animation Studios’ Tangled and ‘We Belong Together’ from Disney/Pixar’s Toy Story 3 presented by their original performers.
Zachary Levi and Mandy Moore will be reprising their roles as Flynn Rider and Rapunzel as they perform ‘I See the Light’ while being accompanied by co-nominee Alan Menken on piano, while Randy Newman will perform ‘We Belong Together.’
Other nominees and performances include: Gwyneth Paltrow performing ‘Coming Home’ from Country Strong; and A.R. Rahman and Florence Welch will perform ‘If I Rise’ from 127 hours.