Aladdin musical brings magic to New Zealand

Aladdin got three wishes, but the cast of the Broadway musical only has one - that Kiwis embrace the magic. 

The record-breaking show has been seen by six million people around the world and now it's New Zealand's turn. 

The musical features a wish-granting genie, a cartoon prince brought to life, 500,000 crystals on 300 costumes and loads of glitter scattered over the lot.

Gareth Jacobs, who plays the Genie, says that the glitter was impossible to avoid.

"I was like, I haven't even put glitter on this week, but still - yep, there's glitter, its everywhere."

Perhaps most importantly, the show also features an actual magic carpet. How it works is the production's best-kept secret.

"It's always 'oh it's Disney magic, come and see', because it is," says Graham Issako, who plays Aladdin.

But that magic doesn't happen overnight.

It took 30 containers to ship Agrabah to Auckland, and two weeks to build.

"It's the biggest show I've ever worked on - and I've done Lion King, Phantom of the Opera, Mary Poppins - Aladdin is just a massive show," says technical director Mark Henstridge.

This blockbuster Broadway hit has made room for a Kiwi star, who's booked a not-so-minor role. Issako, who has the titular role, is a New Zealander.

No pressure, right?

The iconic 1992 movie earned more than $500 million and won two Oscars. 

But it only had six songs, so Broadway dove into the Disney vault to find brand new show tunes. 

It's all part of the appeal for the iconic Genie, who had all his wishes come true in one audition-winning phone call.

Jacobs says it was "a complete black-out moment, one of those 'pinch me' moments where you're like, 'wait, that's not real!". Yeah, it was amazing."

The show is populated by a cast and crew of diehard Disney fans who are ready to show you a whole new world, inspired by one already so loved.

Disney's Aladdin - The Musical is on at Auckland's Civic Theatre now.