This weekend, you can discover a whole new world at Disney’s "Aladdin" Broadway tour. Showing at the Robinson Center Feb. 1-5, you don’t want to miss this classic story of adventure, friendship, wonder and wishes.
Soirée caught up with "Aladdin" company manager Joy Sims ahead of the opening night.
Sims is a native of Little Rock and attended Cabot High School before moving to New York City in 2001 where she’s worked on many Disney Theatrical Group productions and Broadway productions including "Wicked," "Into the Woods," "Chicago" and more.
For tickets and more information, click here.
What are you looking forward to the most about coming back to Little Rock?
JS: There’s only one other time where I got to bring a show to the Robinson Center earlier in my career, so it’s a very full circle moment. I plan to visit my old school in Cabot to speak to the speech and communications class about what I do and how I got to where I am now. Of course, I’m really excited to see my parents and family. I’m bringing a different group each night to see the show.
Do you have any restaurants or spots you plan to visit?
JS: While we’re here I definitely plan on taking the crew out to eat at The Flying Saucer and to take a tour of The Clinton Library. I’m a huge fan of Senior Tequila and anything in the River Market.
Give me your elevator pitch on why people should see "Aladdin."
JS: The beautiful thing about "Aladdin" is that there are a lot of funny and magical moments that make it great for all ages. Whatever your situation is, you can go to the theater, you can find a decent-priced ticket and you’re going to laugh, you’re going to smile. Your eyes are going to bug out with the spectacle of the show that Disney brings and you’re going to leave with a smile. It’s a beautiful show.
What's been the most fun or interesting part of the tour?
JS: We reimagined this tour and made it a bit smaller so that we can go into smaller cities like Little Rock. It’s been fun to be able to go out into the community and have students come in and see what we do and see that this can be a career — that you don’t have to be an actor to do Broadway and tour nationally.
What is your favorite moment or number in the show and why?
JS: "High Adventure" in the second act. It’s when Aladdin’s friends are trying to help him out. It’s fun, high energy and includes a fight number with swords. Almost the whole cast is in it.
Which character do you identify with the most?
JS: There is a minor character named Razoul who is the main guard to the sultan. He is my very favorite character. Cody Hernandez plays him and he knows if he’s ever out, that I’m going to try to fill that role myself. Razoul is always running things and keeping things in line, so I identify with him the most.
View this post on Instagram
What’s the most technically challenging part of the show?
JS: The magic carpet in general. It runs on Disney magic.
Do you have a favorite costume in the show?
JS: I love all of them, but my favorite is the gold outfit that they wear in "Friend Like Me."
Can you describe what it’s been like working on this tour?
JS: Our weeks go from Monday to Sunday. On Monday we move to the next city and unload the show from the truck. We work until about midnight on Monday, go to bed and then wake up at 8 a.m. on Tuesday and continue to load the show in. At 5 p.m. the actors come in for a sound check and we have a show that night. We get up on Wednesday and have the morning off until 10 or 11 a.m. I do office management during this time so I talk to New York, call hotels and join Zoom meetings to keep the actual show going. I work until the show starts again that night. Thursdays and Fridays are for rehearsals and touch-ups. After two shows on Saturday and Sunday, we spend 8 hours loading the show out in the middle of the night, and then we’re off to the next location.
What do you think makes "Aladdin" so popular?
JS: It’s pure joy on stage. Everyone needs a little bit of that right now.
What has been your favorite show that you’ve been a part of?
JS: "Aladdin," of course!
What would you like to say to the people of Little Rock before the show?
JS: I’m thrilled to be coming back to Little Rock. We’ve all worked so hard on this and I hope that everyone comes out to see the show and support the arts.
Purchase tickets online, by phone at 501.244.8800 or in person at the Robinson Center Box Office.
For more information on upcoming Celebrity Attractions productions, visit their website. Keep up with all things Broadway by following along on Facebook, Twitter and Instagram.