A new, full history article is currently
Parade History from 'Disney
Princess Parade' page
The Wonderful World Of Disney Parade has
a long and interesting history, since it was created in 1998 from a
combination of existing and brand new floats and has been around for over
eight years, with many minor (and some major) changes along the way.
The parade began with 13 floats in early
1998 as one of the main attractions of The Year of Disney Classics. The
parade aimed to show a 3D timeline of Disney's greatest films, and by
featuring classics ranging from Mickey Mouse's Steamboat Willie to Hercules
via Cinderella and Aladdin, it did just that. The parade became hugely
popular thanks to the wide range of characters, and the brand new theme song
worked a treat aswell. Dancin' (A Catchy Rhythm) was produced by Jay Smith
and Vasile Sirli exclusively for the parade, and with its immediate success
and insanely catchy nature it became one of the first CD singles the be
released by the resort that very same year.
The same parade line-up of 13 floats and
the old-timer character car pre-parade ran for two years until 31st December
1999, when a new parade began to celebrate the Millennium. Disney's
ImagiNations Parade blended Disney characters with themes from every
continent in gigantic, breathtaking floats. Unfortunately, whilst the
colourful and creative designs and the towering floats of the parade were
spectacular to look at, the parade was simply not very practical in the
unpredictable Parisian weather and audiences missed the large amount of
characters seen in The Wonderful World Of Disney Parade. And so, after some
tough decision-making it was decided to scrap this parade (which had
originally been scheduled to run for the whole of 2001) and return the more
popular Wonderful World Of Disney to the parade route.
However, the return of the parade brought
some major changes - almost all for the worse. Gone were the interactive
parade stops which featured some excellent soundtrack mixes for each float,
along with six of the floats themselves! Peter Pan, The Lion King, The
Jungle Book, Pinocchio and Hercules were simply removed whilst the giant
Princesses Staircase float was replaced by two separate floats for
Cinderella and Sleeping Beauty, both of which were recognised by fans as two
floats from the park's old Disney Classics Parade (1992 - 1998).
In late March 2002, a more positive
change was made to the parade. For the 10th Anniversary of Disneyland Park,
a special Giant Birthday Cake float was added at the start of the parade. On
this float, dancers in chef costumes handed out sweets to the crowds and
joined the rest of the characters in a new parade stop which featured the
exclusive 10 Years Of Magic song written for the celebrations. In September
2002, the parade lost the Giant Birthday Cake float but retained the 10
Years Of Magic parade stop. By early 2003 both had been removed.
May 2003 brought the parade to an end
after four and a half years of magic, to be replaced by The Princess Parade
as part of the Princess Weeks event. Fans of the old parade had little
reason to be upset, however, since this "new" parade simply featured the
previous parade's line-up with the addition of a Snow White and the Seven
Dwarfs float and minus the Steamboat Willie, Mary Poppins and Dumbo floats.
The Princess Parade even used Dancin' (A Catchy Rhythm) as its theme song!
Over the Summer, The Princess Parade regained the Steamboat Willie and Dumbo
floats. Eventually, at the start of the 2005 season, the name reverted back
to The Wonderful World Of Disney Parade and the Mary Poppins float was also
reinserted, creating a lengthy parade of 9 major units.
From the 2006 Summer Magic season
onwards, however, the parade is now being performed under the Disney
Princess Parade title, drawing on the large number of princess units in the
parade to create a single parade theme. The Dumbo unit is no longer used for
this re-named parade, however a far greater number of characters joined the
celebration each day. On 20th August 2006, the order in which the floats are
presented was altered, moving Cinderella to the front and the "un-princess"
float, Steamboat Willie, to the back as an extra "encore".
The parade will officially end its epic
run in late March 2007, to make way for a brand new parade in honour of the
resort's 15th Anniversary Celebration:
Upon a Dream Parade.