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Disney show brings 25 characters to Abu Dhabi stage

Abu Dhabi: Prepare yourself for a dose of nostalgia this weekend as Disney comes to town with its show, Disney Live! Mickey’s Music Festival, from Thursday until March 1 at Yas Island’s du Forum.

The musical mash-up will bring together more than 25 Disney characters, including Mickey Mouse, Minnie Mouse, Donald Duck, Goofy, The Little Mermaid, Woody, Buzz Lightyear, Aladdin and Jasmine, among others.

Featuring music and dance, the show marks the first ever Disney performance in the UAE.

In an e-mail interview, director and choreographer of the show Fred Tallaksen spoke about what makes the show stand out and how it appeals to all ages.

“The cast is so multi-talented. They have to dance, they have to be able to tumble and do gymnastics, [and] they have to be able to jump rope. There’s rollerblading and drumming. There are all these things in the show, and a lot of the performers do all of them,” Tallaksen said.

He described the show as a “state-of-the-art rock concert”, saying: “One of the really amazing things about this tour is the production value. We’ve got amazing lights, amazing music, amazing special effects, [and] incredible video.”

Indeed, the show starts with a video projection of the action behind the scenes, and this spills onto the stage as Mickey Mouse welcomes guests to the tour. Audiences will then be taken to a world of acrobatics, dance and music with characters from Aladdin and The Little Mermaid.

This is followed by a rodeo-style performance by Toy Story characters.

Audiences can also expect classic Disney music remixed with rock, pop, reggae, hip-hop, jazz and country tunes. Fan favourites such as A Whole New World from Aladdin, Under the Sea and Kiss the Girl from The Little Mermaid are among the songs that the cast will sing.

As for the dance moves, Tallaksen described his choreography as “innovative and fun.”

“I’m the type of choreographer who choreographs to lots and lots of different styles, I feel happy going from hip-hop to musical theatre to a little more jazzy to ballad. I love rhythm and it’s really fun for me,” he told tabloid!.

Tallaksen’s creative choreography has taken him across the globe to work with various artists, including Madonna (who he worked with on her Sorry music video and the finale of her Confessions World Tour), La Toya Jackson, Kelly Osbourne and Enrique Iglesias, among others.

As for the target audience for this show, Tallaksen said that it will cater to all age groups.

“Disney has a built-in appeal to everyone, and there’s something for everyone in this show. There’s great dancing, great music and all your favourite Disney characters,” he said.

The show, which has already been performed in other countries such as Turkey and Cyprus, features 15 on-stage performers and a total of 30 people in the overall production.

Created in 2004, the show is expected to attract 20,000 people from the UAE and the Gulf region, organisers said.

Don’t miss it

Disney Live! Mickey’s Music Festival runs from February 26 till March 1 at du Forum in Yas Island. Tickets are priced at Dh150 (bronze), Dh250 (silver), Dh375 (gold) and Dh1,000 (VIP), and are available at Virgin Megastores, and on