Ben Vereen, Jordan Fisher & More to Lead Pasadena Playhouse's ALADDIN AND HIS WINTER WISH; Performances to Begin 12/11

Ben Vereen, Jordan Fisher & More to Lead Pasadena Playhouse's ALADDIN AND HIS WINTER WISH; Performances to Begin 12/11

The Pasadena Playhouse and Lythgoe Family Productions (LFP), announced today the principal casting for ALADDIN AND HIS WINTER WISH, starring Ben Vereen (Broadway's Pippin and Jesus Christ Superstar) as "The Genie," Jordan Fisher as "Aladdin" (Disney's Teen Beach Movie), Ashley Argota as "The Princess" (Nickelodeon's True Jackson VP) and Richard Karn ("Home Improvement") as "The Sultan."

Returning from last year's hugely successful inaugural "Panto at The Playhouse" production of A SNOW WHITE CHRISTMAS, will be director Bonnie Lythgoe ("So You Think You Can Dance"), choreographer Spencer Liff (Emmy nominee "So You Think You Can Dance") and musical director Michael Orland ("American Idol"). Performances will begin December 11 through December 29, with a gala press opening night on Wednesday, December 11, 2012, at 7:00 p.m. at The Pasadena Playhouse. Single tickets are also now on sale.

Lythgoe Family Productions produces fun, musical theatre the whole family can enjoy. Known for their creativity and involvement in television hits "American Idol" and "So You Think You Can Dance," the Lythgoes are dedicated to bringing affordable theatre to families across America. Based on the Grimm fairytales, each story has been modernized with topical scripts for parents and well known pop songs for kids. The Lythgoes pride themselves on creating a memorable experience a family can share together.

"As we had all expected, last year's Panto was the start of a wonderful partnership with Lythgoe Family Productions, which we hope will continue for many seasons to come," stated Playhouse Artistic Director Sheldon Epps. "It was a great delight to see so many families enjoying a memorable theatre experience, including so many who had never been to The Playhouse before. We are all looking forward to this year's premiere of Aladdin and I know that its talented cast will take us on a holiday magic carpet ride."

LFP producer Kris Lythgoe added "It's wonderful to be returning to The Pasadena Playhouse with Aladdin this December and continue our drive to introduce theatre to young families and new audiences. Our long term partnership with The Playhouse enables families to enjoy Panto for many years to come andAladdin is one of many magical tales to be told."

An updated version of the classic Arabian Nights tale, in the style of a traditional British family Panto, ALADDIN AND HIS WINTER WISH is a singing, swinging and soaring adventure that features family-friendly magic, with a comedic twist, dancing (with "So You Think You Can Dance" alumni), a live pony and contemporary music from "Jai Ho" (Slumdog Millionaire) to "Treasure" (Bruno Mars) and many more. A Panto is known for its interactive style and humor that appeals to everyone from ages 2 - 102! Before every performance, guests and their families are invited to enjoy a Citi Presents: Winter Wonderland event in The Playhouse's Engemann Family Courtyard, complete with holiday carolers, crafts, activities, games, and photo opportunities, as well as special on-site benefits for Citi cardmembers."

The principal cast for ALADDIN AND HIS WINTER WISH features:

Ben Vereen as "The Genie" (Broadway's Pippin and Jesus Christ Superstar)
Jordan Fisher as "Aladdin" (Disney's Teen Beach Movie)
Ashley Argota as "The Princess" (Nickelodeon's True Jackson VP)
Paul Vogt as "Widow Twankey" (Broadway's Hairspray and Chicago)
Richard Karn as "The Sultan" ("Home Improvement")
Josh Adamson as "Evil Abanazar" (US and UK Tours of Peter Pan 360)

Twelve local children will also be cast for the production. Open auditions will be held on October 5, 2013, at the Westfield Santa Anita shopping center starting at 10:00 a.m. Visit www.AmericanPanto.com for more information.

In addition to director Bonnie Lythgoe, the creative team for ALADDIN AND HIS WINTER WISH includes choreography by Spencer Liff (Emmy nominee for "So You Think You Can Dance"), musical direction by Michael Orland ("American Idol"), book by Kris Lythgoe, scenic and costume design by Lythgoe Family Productions and LFP producers include Kris Lythgoe, Bonnie Lythgoe, Becky Lythgoe and Jason Haigh Ellery.

Two student matinee performances, allowing local school children to see ALADDIN AND HIS WINTER WISH, have been scheduled for December 12 and 13. Ovation, America's only arts network and the home of arts-centric series including "James Franco Presents" (James Franco), "The Fashion Fund" (Anna Wintour), and "A Young Doctor's Notebook" (Jon Hamm and Daniel Radcliffe) will once again sponsor transportation for the student matinees, allowing over 1,500 children the opportunity to experience the arts for the very first time.



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