Be a guest: Relax with Disney's ‘Beauty & the Beast’

Belle and Beast

Hilary Maiberger stars as Belle and Darick Pead as Beast in Disney's "Beauty & the Beast," coming to the Panama City Marina Civic Center on Feb. 5.

JOAN MARCUS | Contributed photo
Published: Wednesday, January 30, 2013 at 06:08 PM.

PANAMA CITY — Just a mention of “Beauty & the Beast,” and the lyrics from “Be Our Guest” or “Tale As Old As Time” begin to play in my head, surely the case with most parents and Disney fans.

“The songs are so amazing,” said Darick Pead, who stars as Beast in Disney’s Broadway musical.

 The national touring production stops in town Tuesday at the Marina Civic Center, where guests are sure to get swept away when the orchestra starts up. Disney’s “Beauty & the Beast” features the animated film’s Academy Award-winning score with music by Alan Menken and lyrics by the late Howard Ashman, with additional songs with music by Alan Menken and lyrics by Tim Rice.

“Everything is basically the same as the movie, but it’s cooler live — anything can happen,” Darick said by phone from Baltimore, Md., on Monday. “New songs have been added for Belle, and I have a song I sing. Belle (Hilary Maiberger) is everything you could ever want in a Disney princess. She’s got the look. She’s got the voice. She’s got the acting.”

But it’s not just principal characters who stand out in their lavish costumes. The Ensemble also has been so phenomenal, Darick said, even Director Rob Roth has had no notes for them.

“The director comes out and the show remains in pristine condition,” Darick said. “I tend to look at it that for somebody in the audience, it is their first show. And for someone, it will be the last, the last chance to see a Broadway show, a great experience. It helps me maintain my level of professionalism and consistency.”

The tour began in September, though rehearsal for the production began in June, so Darick has had plenty of time to refine his part. The outward transformation of Darick into the Beast takes about 25 minutes, with another 10 to put on the costume.

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