By Via Reyes
I was invitedÂ to see the Confederation Centre’s holiday production,Â Aladdin: Another Fairly Tall Tale,Â this past FridayÂ and I could not have asked for a better way to spend a study break from finals.Â Following last year’s holiday production of Cinderella, thisÂ classic tale is given a specialÂ Island twist. Written and directed by the Confedertion Centre’s artistic directorÂ Adam Brazier,Â this productionÂ features a talented local cast and crew and soundtrack with lovable and familiar pop tunes.
With all the stress that the holiday season brings, I think this production is such a perfect break from it all because it is just such a fun time. The show welcomed audience interaction which I absolutely loved. There was even one time that when the audience did not “boo” loud enough, the villainous JafarÂ egged us on even more. There were new characters created just for this adaptation, like the lovable and justÂ a little raunchy Widow Twanky whoÂ firedÂ off joke after jokeÂ and the beautiful and mysterious genie ScheherazadeÂ who seemed to be driving the show. Being from away, I was a little nervous that I would not understandÂ the humour but I found myself laughing along with the audience.Â Settings that are all too familiar, like Victoria Park,Â and a song written for downtown’sÂ Victoria Row,Â were present in the show which made it feel all the more special, like an ode to this place weÂ love.Â The story is also set around Christmas time so that elementÂ brought on anÂ extra dose of that joy and cheer that the holiday season canÂ bring.
As I sat there and watched the interactions of the actors withÂ the audience and the tributes made to the familiar locale, I have never felt so at one with an audience. This production brings the Island together and highlights so many things that make this place special. I moved here three years ago from a bustling city thousands of miles away with a population of at least 80% more butÂ this silly adaptation of Aladdin was one of the strongest reminders that I am so lucky to experience the strong senseÂ of community that living hereÂ brings.Â I could feel the love collectively shared by those involved in the making of this production and the people smiling in their seats for this little island they all call home.
I also want to leave everyone with a final message: LET’S SUPPORT LOCAL. Support local theatre, local talent, and local artisans so that we can continue to be able to witness incredible shows like these. As someone who has loved going out to the pop-up markets with local artisans, shows ofÂ local singer-songwriters, art battles featuring local artists, and theatre productions like these, I am constantly in awe of the hard work and dedication that is put into presenting their best to this community and to the rest of Canada and the world. I have only been here for three years but never have I lived in a place that valuesÂ local as much as PEI does and that is something that we, as a community, need to hold on to. When you support local, you areÂ helping your loved ones, your neighbours, your friends, continue to doÂ what they love to do. There is so much talent on this little island and supporting local willÂ keep that fire burning.
Aladdin: A Fairly Tall Tale will be on stage until the 19thÂ so be sure toÂ grab your ticketsÂ to this special event. ThisÂ wacky show is enjoyable for all ages so bringÂ out your family and friends for what is sure to be a really fun time!
Thank you once again to Fraser McCallum for the invitationÂ to witness such a fun and lovable production!