SOMERS POINT — Welcome to Agrabah, where flying carpets, heroes, a lovable genie, talking birds and monkeys, a beautiful princess and a villain come together in “Aladdin Jr.,” the spring junior production in Somers Point. Aladdin is the tale of a thief turned prince who overcomes many obstacles to win the hand of Princess Jasmine.

Jordan Road School language arts teacher Phil Pallitto is the director, with a cast of 42 students in grades first through third from both the Dawes Avenue and Jordan Road schools. Robin Wolf Smith is assisting on the production.

Pallitto said he chose "Aladdin Jr." for this year’s production because of the underlying themes of going against the norms of society, telling the truth and feeling the freedom to express oneself. The director said it is his hope that the positive messages reach out to everyone involved in the production.

Pallitto said he also hopes the kids have fun and get bitten by the acting bug and make theater a part of their life.

While weather disrupted the cast’s production schedule, they are now full-steam ahead. They are running their lines and working on dance numbers and favorite songs, such as “Arabian Nights.”

Students who have taken on lead roles are having a great time learning their lines, songs and getting their time in the spotlight. Vincent Guinan, 8, plays the Sultan and said it is much fun to stand in the middle of the stage and have all the attention on his character.

Cylas Finx plays the lovable Genie. He thinks the best part is that he gets to make people laugh.

Eme Laut plays Princess Jasmine and she said she is enjoying her role because her character has a completely different personality.

Lilli Person is the Lamp Vendor, and said she enjoys her part because she gets to be the narrator for the entire show.

Billy Jenkins plays Jaffar and said he likes to be the villain.

Elizabeth Zappile plays Iago, the very funny and colorful bird and said she loves her part because she gets to make people laugh.

Eli Endicott is Abu and said he is really excited just to have an important role.

Aladdin is played by Geoffrey Lovett, a veteran of several productions. He said he likes many different aspects of the show, the different parts coming together, the costumes and being up on stage is just something he really wants to do.

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