During a recent trip to New York City in August, we met the stars of Newsies and the new Aladdin the Musical. I had seen Aladdin the Musical previously in Seattle, but never had the chance to meet the stars…until my recent trip to New York City.
Before I go any further, let me re-introduce myself. My name is Gavin Doyle, I run DisneyDose.com, a Disney podcast and blog focusing on educating the Disney enthusiast through incredible interviews with the people who help to bring the magic to Disneyland and the Disney company. Last week I wrote about my experience touring Walt Disney Imagineering headquarters. Each week I’ll bring you articles about the famous people and places that have helped to define the Disney company.
On our first night in New York, we headed to Times Square to see the incredible collection of neon signs and enjoy some late night shopping. As we were checking out Disney’s New Amsterdam theater just off the square on 42nd Street, I realized that the Aladdin show would just be getting out. Just days before I had heard about the Disney stage door experience and we decided to check it out.
Slowly members of the cast began to come out the stage door. Each were greeted by cheers from the crowd. I was surprised to see that every member of the cast took their time meeting each fan–posing for pictures and giving autographs. Adam Jacobs, the actor bringing the character Aladdin to life took a moment to stop and talk.
Just when we were getting ready to leave, the final star of the night stepped out the stage door. TONY winner James Monroe Iglehart, who plays the Genie, was greeted with loud cheers from everyone waiting.
Boy was I excited to meet James. I had seen the show previously and was wowed by his TONY award acceptance speech.
Not only did I meet the big man who brings the Genie to life each night, I was lucky enough to interview both James Monroe Iglehart and Adam Jacobs.
These interviews are available on the Disney Dose podcast episode below. (Player not working? Listen to the Aladdin interview here.)
The next day we attended one of the last showings of Newsies in New York City before the production went on a national tour.
After the show, audience members are invited to stay to meet the stars at the stage door. Not only do you get to meet the stars, but you can most likely get all of their autographs as well. The youngest member of the cast was a big hit with the grandmothers in the audience.
Disney creates incredible stage door experiences, but by no means are they the only shows to conduct them. During this last trip I also had the chance to see Neil Patrick Harris up close and personal outside the theater where he was performing in Hedwig and the Harry Inch. The crowds surrounding Neil were incredible as you can see below. Barricades are put up on both sides of the street and the security is intense.
Our final night in New York we headed over to the Richard Rogers Theater where Idina Menzel was starring in the original musical If/Then. But, we weren’t at the theater to see the show – we wanted to meet the voice of Elsa in Frozen. I even got to talk with Idina briefly during her autograph signing.
That’s all for me this week. I hope that you enjoyed the interview with James Monroe Iglehart and Adam Jacobs and my experiences in New York.
Soon I will be back on Inside the Magic with more stories from my visit to the Walt Disney Archives during my personal tour with Chief Archivist Emeritus Dave Smith. For more in between postings on Inside the Magic check out DisneyDose.com and the Disney Dose podcast.