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Magical 'Aladdin' Delivers Magic Carpet Ride and Dad-Joke Humor
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By David Taub, Senior Reporter
Published 4 weeks ago on
May 2, 2024

Marcus M. Martin stars as Genie. "Disney's Aladdin" plays at Saroyan Theatre through Sunday. (Aladdin Tour Photo/Deenvan Meer/Disney).

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Genie’s wit and puns would make any dad joke-teller proud. And, the colorful sets and the special effects of the carpet ride made for a magical premiere of “Disney’s Aladdin” at the Saroyan Theatre on Wednesday night.

David Taub

Opinion

Disney’s Aladdin, which is the last production of the Broadway in Fresno season, runs through Sunday. There are added matinees on Saturday and Sunday.

Simple Story, Big Laughs

This may be the best effort in the series since “Hamilton” in 2022. The story is well-known and simple — poor Aladdin finds the magic lamp, uses his wishes to wow Princess Jasmine, only to be thwarted by Jafar but true love wins in the end. The sets took me to the palace, the marketplace, and inside the cave.

There are many comic foils in Disney’s Aladdin: Genie, played by Marcus M. Martin, is boisterous, over-the-top, and his charisma drives the show. Iago (Aaron Choi), the wormy sidekick of evil Jafar, is full of one-liners.

Prince Ali (the alter-ego of Aladdin, played by Adi Roy) and his magic carpet ride with Jasmine (Senzel Ahmady) highlighted the technical stagecraft. The use of lighting and whatever mechanical wizardry made the characters float across the stage. I don’t know how they did it, and I don’t want to know.

The Broadway in Fresno series continues next season with “Come From Away (Nov. 12-13); Annie (Feb. 11-12, 2025); Six The Musical (April 1-6); and Tina (May 12-13).

Senzel Ahmady (left as Jasmine) and Adi Roy as Aladdin. (Aladdin Tour Photo/Deenvan Meer/Disney)

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David Taub,
Senior Reporter
Curiosity drives David Taub. The award-winning journalist might be shy, but feels mighty with a recorder in his hand. He doesn't see it his job to "hold public officials accountable," but does see it to provide readers (and voters) the information needed to make intelligent choices. Taub has been honored with several writing awards from the California News Publishers Association. He's just happy to have his stories read. Joining GV Wire in 2016, Taub covers politics, government and elections, mainly in the Fresno/Clovis area. He also writes columns about local eateries (Appetite for Fresno), pro wrestling (Off the Bottom Rope), and media (Media Man). Prior to joining the online news source, Taub worked as a radio producer for KMJ and PowerTalk 96.7 in Fresno. He also worked as an assignment editor for KCOY-TV in Santa Maria, California, and KSEE-TV in Fresno. He has also worked behind the scenes for several sports broadcasts, including the NCAA basketball tournament, and the Super Bowl. When not spending time with his family, Taub loves to officially score Fresno Grizzlies games. Growing up in the San Francisco Bay Area, Taub is a die-hard Giants and 49ers fan. He graduated from the University of Michigan with dual degrees in communications and political science. Go Blue! You can contact David at 559-492-4037 or at Send an Email

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