Durant High School Journalism

A Weekend With Adamari

In this new video, see how Staff Writer Adamari Jaimez has fun on the weekends. Stay tuned for the next weekend with the PawPrint staff.

Aladdin The Musical comes to Tampa

Aladdin the musical is a Braoday musical that tours the world, showcasing their talent acoss the globe.


Aladdin the musical is a Braoday musical that tours the world, showcasing their talent acoss the globe.

The iconic 1992 Disney classic, Aladdin, became an on-stage production to bring the mystical city of Agrabar to audiences across the country in 2011.  In December, the 2019 Aladdin Tour brought the story of a “street rat’s” efforts to win Princess Jasmine’s heart to Morsani Hall in Tampa’s Straz Center.  

The magical experience began at the doors when guests were met by enthusiastic greeters to be directed to their seats and to various locations inside the center for commemorative pictures.  The adaptation included 11 more songs than the original Tim Rice animated screenplay.

The new songs developed Aladdin’s character, played by Jonah Ho’okano, and motivation to become more than a “street rat” in a rendition of “Proud of Your Boy” which Aladdin emotionally dedicated to his mother. The emotional new songs not only gave the actors more solos but provided insight and back story of the characters that the animated version did not.  

Kaenaon Alani Kekoa’s powerful, yet fluid voice filled the stage in her first song as Jasmine with “These Palace Walls.”  While her solos stood out, her voice was overshadowed and lost in her duets with childhood friend Ho’okano, whose seven years of experience showed in his flawless performance. 

The on-stage adaptation included three friends for Aladdin to fill in for Abu, Aladdin’s monkey sidekick in the animated movie.  However, Babkak (Zach Bencal), Omar (Ben Chavez), and Kassim (Colt Prattes) were irrelevant and seemed to be randomly tossed in throughout the duration of the play.  Prattes’s emphatic voice, however, emerged in his solos of the songs the trio sang and saved the scenes the friends were in, but their roles seemed incongruous and mistimed to the storyline.

Korie Lee Blossey, who played Genie, and Ho’okano had indisputable chemistry.  Their dialogue seemed genuine and flowed naturally as their jokes bounced off each other, like a veteran comedy team.  In one of his scenes with Genie, Ho’okano broke character and laughed at a few of Genie’s jokes before regaining his composure.  The natural friendship between the actors made Aladdin’s scenes with Genie the best part of the play.  

Iago (Reggie De Leon), Jafar’s sidekick, was overly dramatic and his performance took away from what should have been more serious scenes.  His part, like Aladdin’s friends, could have been left out of the show entirely. Genie begged for applause and laughs at the beginning by trying to rally the crowd, seemingly sitting on their hands, after some of his jokes didn’t land.  Although his performance was not comparable to Robin William’s (but then again, whose could be?), he played the part well and tied the scenes together seamlessly.

The sets designed for the play were terribly underdone.  The marketplace was far too simple and the small ensemble didn’t compensate for the lacking backdrop.  The same was true for the scenes in the palace.  

     The palace should have been elegant, as it was the palace of a sultan, but instead was disappointing and simple.  By comparison, however, the scene in the Cave of Wonders was exaggerated, a stark contrast to the rest of the play.  The Cave of Wonders shouldn’t have been the scene to have the large set since it was only used for one scene. The simple sets allowed the elegant and colorful costumes to stand out but was ultimately disappointing.

Nichole Sullivan saw the performance for the second time on December 26th and said, “I like it better than the first time I saw it…I saw it the first time and I think I expected it to be amazing, but I was a little disappointed.”  She said her expectations were lower this time, which made this performance more enjoyable.

“The tour will be coming to a close in April, and the reason being is that this show itself is just too big to fit other stages,” said Matthew Watson, a member of the orchestra.  Michelle West, an ensemble member of the production, explained that the show can only fit a few stages which limits the tour to a few cities in the country. 

Overall, the Broadway adaptation of Aladdin, in true Disney fashion, fulfilled all expectations, providing a unique on-stage Disney experience for Aladdin and Disney fans.

About the Writer
Photo of Lilyann Belcher
Lilyann Belcher, Staff Writer

Lily Belcher is a sophomore at Durant High School and she is a Staff Writer for the PawPrint newspaper. She is also part of Durant’s Flag Football team,...

Disney+ streaming service is to arrive soon

This is the logo for the new straeming service coming November 12, 2019

This is the logo for the new straeming service coming November 12, 2019

In this day and age, the public can watch whatever they want, whenever they want.  With media service providers such as Netflix, Hulu, and Amazon Prime Video almost any movie or television show is available to people with just the press of a button. Now there is new competition for these companies arising within the industry, it’s called Disney+. Disney has created its own media streaming service that will be released on November 12, 2019, and it will include movies and television shows from Disney, Pixar, National Geographic, Star Wars, and Marvel Studios.

With all of these shows and movies being on Disney+, companies like Hulu and Netflix are going to have to compete with even more competition. Disney is also taking some programs from different film industries, more specifically 21st Century Fox’s programs, such as The Simpsons and The Sound of Music. So it is not just Disney projects, but Disney is also taking from other companies as well.

In addition to posting old shows and movies, Disney+ will also make brand new television shows and films that are coming out with Disney+. Like Netflix and their own original shows and movies like Stranger Things, Disney has made a whole line up of brand new original shows and movies that can only be seen through Disney+. There will be new live-action movies, spin-offs, original films, and so much more. With all of these new projects going onto Disney+, there will also be many old shows and movies going on as well. These old films will be anything from The Parent Trap, to Hannah Montana. Disney+ will have all old, current, and new programs available to their customers.

Disney+ is going to make it harder for the other straming services to match the content available on their website. Many viewers are being drawn from the old services to Disney+.  With this new competition, a lot of things are about to change. 

About the Writer
Photo of Mattie Powers
Mattie Powers, Staff Writer

Mattie Powers is a senior at Durant High School and a Staff Writer for the PawPrint newspaper. Not only is Mattie Powers involved in the PawPrint, but...

“Frozen 2” to be released in 2019



Pixar’s Frozen proved to be an enormous success, earning a whopping $1.3 billion at the box office and earning the title of the highest grossing animated film in history.  Frozen’s impact spreads farther than the theater, as you can find Frozen toys and merchandise almost everywhere. The film even got its own Broadway show.

A Frozen sequel was announced back in 2015 and has been in the works for the past two years.

The four core cast members, Kristen Bell, Idina Menzel, Jonathon Groff, and Josh Gad are all confirmed for the new film along with some new cast members. According to Variety, Sterling K. Brown and Evan Rachel Wood are set to play roles in Frozen 2, though their characters have not yet been announced. Directors Jennifer Lee and Chris Buck are also returning for the movie.

The songwriters from the original films are working on Frozen 2 as well, and four songs have already been written for the movie so far.

While little information has been revealed regarding the plot, it has been revealed that Anna and Elsa will embark on an adventure far from their home, Arendelle. It has also been said that the audience will get to know Anna and Elsa better in the new film.

According to DigitalSpy, filmmakers established the end of the movie before anything and are working backward from there.

The sequel is set to hit theaters on Nov. 22, 2019.

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