Photos by Paul Lyden
Ancient Egypt. Political intrigue. An illicit love affair. These are the central themes which frame the musical you are about to see.
With a pulsating rock score by one of the world’s most-acclaimed and popular contemporary songwriters, Disney’s original musical version of Aida breathes new life into a bittersweet fable which has captured the hearts and imaginations of millions of romantics for over a century.
Though generally considered fictional, the story has its roots in an ancient Egyptian legend which was discovered and deciphered in a papyrus scroll by French Egyptologist Auguste Mariette Bey in the mid-1800’s. It was this legend which served as the source material for the Giuseppe Verdi and Antonio Ghislanzoni’s landmark, four-act opera commissioned by the Khedive of Egypt to celebrate the opening of the Suez Canal. Opening in Cairo in 1871, the opus Aida was immediately met with great acclaim and is arguably considered to be the most frequently-produced and cherished opera in the world.
While retaining the opera’s skeletal storyline, the creators of the musical Aida, which opened at the Palace Theatre on Broadway in 2004, fashioned a modern musical that introduces to new audiences around the globe the unforgettable love story of young Captain Radames, his betrothed Egyptian princess Amneris and the Nubian captive Aida who inadvertently comes between them to forever change their lives.
-- Mark Robinson
No sex please, they're students
Tailoring a hit broadway musical for the schoo market means shortening, rescoring, and deciding what will play in Peoria.
By Catherine Foster, Globe Staff
October 2, 2005