SINT MAARTEN (CUL DE SAC) – St. Maarten Academy and Charlotte Brookson Academy of the Performance Arts took their joint acclaimed performance of Aladdin to Anguilla last Sunday (March 8) and wowed the audience with another electrifying performance.
The performance, which brought the curtains down on the second Anguilla Regional Drama Festival, was held in the courtyard of the Paradise Cove Resort, to an appreciative audience. The outdoor stage and brilliant weather proved the perfect backdrop for the fabled desert city of Agrabah, where the musical is set.
The 41-member-strong ensemble cast of young and talented actors, ranged between the ages of seven and 18. The titular role was played by Tyreke Arrindell, a fifth-form student of CBA, while the role of Princess Jasmine was played by Giselle Whinfield, a fourth-form student of St. Maarten Academy.
Aladdin tells the story of Princess Jasmine, who has wearied of her sheltered life and her overbearing father’s desire to find her a royal suitor. After sneaking out of the palace into the marketplace, she meets Aladdin, a charming street urchin and reformed thief. They are discovered together, and Aladdin is sentenced to death.
However, he is saved by the villainous Jafar (played by second-former Rashad Rombley of St. Maarten Academy), the sultan’s right-hand man who is plotting to take over the throne. In this incarnation of Aladdin, the titular hero is imprisoned in the Cave of Wonders, where he encounters a magic carpet which draws him to a magical lamp.
Where there’s a lamp, there’s a Genie and Aladdin unintentionally releases this one! He is granted his wish to be transformed into a prince, and with his new identity as “Prince Ali”, he tries to win Jasmine’s heart. The charismatic Daniel Fearon, a fourth-form student of St. Maarten Academy, played the role of the Genie.
The production was directed by St. Maarten Academy English Language, Literature, and Drama teacher, Ms. Joanna Trim, and co-directed by Ms. Melissa Hamm, Theatre Arts teacher at CBA, along with Mrs. Arlene Halley of the National Institute for the Arts (NIA) and the talented Ms. Sue-An Agol, student of CBA.
Following their performance, Anguilla Drama Fest Director, Mrs. Collette Jones-Chin, lauded the young cast on their performance, and used the opportunity to invite them to return to Anguilla to stage another production.
The performance in Anguilla marked the third staging of the play, having been previously performed to a sold-out house at the Philipsburg Cultural Center on October 3 and 4, 2019.
Directors Melissa Hamm & Joanna Trim L-R
Collette Jones Chin
Gizelle Whinfield (Jasmine), Tyreke Arrindell (Aladdin)