A Chat With A Genie: “Aladdin” Star From the Bay Area Remains Humble Even in Award Season by Kevin M. Thomas

James Monroe Iglehart as Genie in "Aladdin The Musical"

James Monroe Iglehart as Genie in “Aladdin The Musical”

It’s award season in New York and we were able to have a chat with award nominee and our old friend from the Bay Area, James Monroe Iglehart, who is getting a lot of accolades and applause in “Aladdin” the musical.

We first met Iglehart many years ago when he had a small part in the “Memphis,” which premiered in the Bay Area at TheatreWorks.

Kevin M. Thomas & James Monroe Iglehart

Kevin M. Thomas & James Monroe Iglehart

By the time that show got to Broadway and won the Tony for Best Musical, Iglehart’s part had been expanded. Apparently, they know talent when they see it.

When we chatted with Iglehart in New York, he tells us of changes that were made to expand his Genie role in “Aladdin” during it’s  pre-Broadway tryouts in Seattle and Toronto.

Iglehart, still as nice as can be, doesn’t seem to be letting award season go to his head. We ask him about how he handles all of the attention. But didn’t want him to think too much about it as he is nominated for EVERY theatre award possible this year – Tony Award, Drama Desk Award, Outer Critics Circle, Drama League and even the Astaire Award for best dancing on Broadway.

Dancing? Yes, we discuss with Iglehart how complicated and demanding it is to be able to not just be a bigger, bearish guy, but to be able to sing, dance and do cartwheels on the stage eight times a week.

See how much fun we had catching up with Iglehart – and even making him laugh when we compared his hot male ensemble with the Village People. You too can discover in our chat how his talent is as big as his heart,  but his ego remains small.

To get more information on the exciting “Aladdin” musical which gives Iglehart one of theatre’s most memorable moments of all time, go to www.aladdinthemusical.com.