Delaney Benson breathes new life into ‘The Little Mermaid’ 35 years after her mom voice the iconic Disney character

It’s nearly every parents wish to see their kids spread their wings and fly as they go after their dreams.

It’s another fantasy all together to see their kids following in their footsteps.

Thirty-five years ago, before holding the title of wife or mom, Jodi Benson was the voice of Ariel in Disney’s The Little Mermaid. Now, her daughter, Delaney Benson is making that role her own.

From July 11 to August 4, Delaney will be embodying the role of Ariel for Loxen’s immersive adaptation of The Little Mermaid at Area Stage. It’s a role, if you were to offer it to her a year ago, Delaney likely wouldn’t have taken it, she told Mamas Uncut.

But now, a college graduate fully prepared to follow her dreams, it seemed as good a time as ever. “I am at a great stage in life where I know the character so well. I know the story, obviously. And I listened to the songs all my life,” Delaney told Mamas Uncut.

But it’s this particular adaption, which includes new songs, a live audience, and begins at the ticket booth, that gives her the perfect opportunity to make Ariel her own. 

“This is new adaptation. It’s 90 minutes. It’s immersive. The audience will be right below [me]. I can see them. I can feel them. I can smell them. It’s like nothing I’ve ever done,” Delaney explained. 

It gives the young actress an opportunity to breathe new life into Ariel in a way you’ve never seen it before. “It’s different than the animated movie. You know, [my mom] didn’t do it on the stage. I’m not actual mermaid,” Delaney added with a laugh. 

“I don’t have fins. I’m not underwater. So there’s got to be some suspension of disbelief.”

“I try to stray away from ‘the walking in the footsteps’ or ‘she’s just like her mom,’ because I’m not,” Delaney explains to Mamas Uncut. “We’re kind of a similar age of when [my mom] did voice of Ariel and I’m doing this, but we’re totally different people and I’m excited to like, bring me.”

“So I’m really, you know, taking some of the isms of and the antics that [Ariel] does, but also like me as a person, like, what would I do in this situation? So that’s what I’m starting to play with. And I’m really having a lot of fun.”

The Little Mermaid at Area Stage will leave you feeling like you’re on a Disney ride. Kids and other audience members attending the show will be able to interact with the actors and feel as though they are under the sea or on land in Prince Eric’s castle.

“It’s a shared experience,” producer Benji Leon told Mamas Uncut. “And theater should be thought provoking and a little bit daring when it can be, right? This is done not just for kids, not just for Disney fanatics, but for anybody. It’s a phenomenal night out. And I think most people are really, really going to love it.”

“I guarantee you, nobody is going to leave disappointed,” Benji continued. “I think this theater, this theatrical experience is going to sit with them. It’s an immersive experience. It’s not just the show, from beginning to end, you’re engaged.”

About Mamas Uncut

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