The television special The Little Mermaid Live!, which aired in November 2019, is a concert-style live presentation of the music of The Little Mermaid. Performed before a live audience, the special features footage of the film interspersed with live performances led by Auli'i Cravalho as Ariel, Graham Phillips as Eric, Shaggy as Sebastian, Queen Latifah as Ursula, John Stamos as Chef Louis, and Amber Riley as the MC.
This TV special feels like a culmination of a couple of things, namely: it's a fancier studio version of the regular The Little Mermaid Hollywood Bowl concerts (which have featured, among others, Sara Bareilles and Lea Michele as Ariel), with some of the music and set/props that hark to the Broadway musical, and is following the recent revival of live television musical specials (kicked off with 2013's The Sound of Music Live!). It's also part of the general anticipation-building for the upcoming live-action The Little Mermaid film.
Although this TV special is "just" a studio concert, it's the first live-action adaptation of content from the 1989 film that's been recorded for mass release, as opposed to the ephemeral and less-accessible open air concerts, stage musicals and theme park shows. The props are more elaborate than the Broadway musical, even, though it makes sense that they're able to do more since they're only staging the musical number instead of the whole story. It's a joyful tribute to the film, with energetic performances from actors and chorus and audience alike.
All of Alan Menken and Howard Ashman's songs of the 1989 film are performed in the show, though all of them except "Part of Your World" are slightly tweaked or have new lyrics, which is nifty. Some of these changes, along with two new songs ("Her Voice" and "If Only") are taken from the Broadway stage musical, which was written and composed by Alan Menken and Glenn Slater.
Rehearsals and interviews.
Rehearsals and behind-the-scenes.