The LOT’s production of the beloved Disney Musical The Little Mermaid Jr. is a bundle of light-hearted fun. Having been specially adapted for young audiences, the auditorium was filled with happy, young faces, giggling and cheering for their princess Ariel. As a nostalgic person myself, and an absolute lover of all things Disney, this show touched my heart and brought me back to my childhood.
The Little Mermaid Jr. tells the story of Princess Ariel (Rebecca Sadowski), a mermaid with an angelic voice who is obsessed with the human world — much to the disdain of her father. One day, Ariel saves a human named Prince Eric (Thomas Goetz) from drowning, and in true Disney fashion, she falls in love with him. The story follows the princess as she tries to make the prince fall in love with her, while her evil aunt Ursula (Bianca Heuvelmans) tries to sabotage her. Ariel is helped by her loveable friends Sebastian the Crab (Chris Vergara) and Flounder the Guppy (April Clemmens).
Having seen another LOT production recently (and loving it), I had high hopes for the quality of this show, and, for the most part, I was not disappointed. There were times when the background singers’ microphones were excessively louder than the leads’ microphones (at one point even drowning out the voice of Sebastian during his final chorus of “Under The Sea”), and the ending of the show seemed a bit rushed, however, these were the only pitfalls.
Overall, the show was very well done. The dance numbers and the songs truly brought it to life, and the flashy colours, the bright lights, and the use of technology made up for the slight hiccups.
Some actors portrayed their characters better than others, namely, it was Chris Vergara, as Sebastian, who stole the show. With his quirky responses, his phenomenal ability to move about the stage, and his stellar voice, he brought the character of Sebastian to life with the great amount of energy and love that he put into the role. The entire audience (myself included) was in awe of him from start to finish. His rendition of the famous song “Under the Sea” had the audience clapping and singing along in complete joy.
The Little Mermaid Jr. is a light-hearted, fun show for children and adults alike. It’s an opportunity to travel back to a time before Frozen and Tangled, and it serves as a wonderful reminder of the old world of Disney.
The Little Mermaid Jr. is playing at the Al Green Theatre until August 31st. For tickets and more information, visit http://lowerossingtontheatre.com/.
Book by Doug Wright
Music by Alan Menken
Lyrics by Howard Ashman and Glenn Slater