Tuesday, 10th April 2012

[VIDEO] Disney Magic on Parade! opening day performance

Disneyland Paris 20th Anniversary Launch Weekend

Bright blue skies came out on 1st April for the first official public performance of Disney Magic on Parade!, which you can watch in our exclusive video right here. Just a day earlier, the special premiere performance had gone out under thick clouds with a sharp chill in the air as the “press event curse” struck again — that unwritten Disney park rule which means any major organised event will be struck by less-than-perfect weather.

This opening day performance was also thankfully missing the over-abundance of parade guards the previous day, almost overpowering the floats themselves. And if you’d have been there, you could have breathed in the scents of each float again, missing the day before; a unique feature of Disney’s Once Upon a Dream Parade which was thankfully revived just in time.

Donald Duck, rather than Tinker Bell, ended the parade on its first day, and it seems the two will continue to share the role depending on the fairy’s availability — no doubt being very busy with a certain nighttime spectacular right now.

Tuesday, 10th April 2012

[VIDEO] Disney’s 20th Anniversary Celebration Train with Mickey Mouse

Disneyland Paris 20th Anniversary Launch Weekend

After Disney Characters’ Express, Minnie’s Party Train and Disney All Stars Express, this is our fourth consecutive video of the character train rounding the corner of Main Street, U.S.A. beside Town Square. A popular annual tradition, or a daily nuisance? You be the judge of that. But, as Katy Harris confirmed in the 20th Anniversary roundtable discussion, it’s incredibly popular with regular guests, who “just love” being able to meet the characters in this way, which they normally only see fleetingly passing onboard parade floats. And this year, as you can see in our video above, the rumours were true: even Mickey is willing to get mobbed on Central Plaza, all in the name of the 20th Anniversary.

• Watch a video of the train’s official premiere arrival here.

Friday, 6th April 2012

[VIDEO] Disney’s 20th Anniversary Celebration Train Premiere with Mickey Mouse

Disneyland Paris 20th Anniversary Launch Weekend

It might be one of the less-anticipated 20th Anniversary events but, with a passenger list now comprising all the “VIP” characters, Disney’s 20th Anniversary Celebration Train will no doubt be just as big a hit with guests as ever. Surprisingly, the characters on-board, who ride up to Central Plaza before stepping down to be mobbed (or in official terms, for “meet ‘n’ greets”) now even include the hallowed Mickey Mouse himself!

However, for this special “premiere” performance at 5.45pm on 31st March, the multi-coloured train didn’t stop as it rounded Central Plaza and Mickey Mouse wasn’t on-board: he was stealing the show in his new sorcerer costume atop the temporary press platform, dancing to new theme song “Do You Believe” and guiding the train around the plaza with a wave of his hands.

Thursday, 5th April 2012

[VIDEO] 20th & Disney Dreams! Q&A with Steve Davison, Kat de Blois, Katy Harris

Disneyland Paris 20th Anniversary Launch Weekend

This has been one epic upload, but here we go: the full, unedited 48-minute presentation and panel discussion with Creative Director Kat de Blois, Show Director Katy Harris and VP Parades & Spectaculars Steve Davison himself. Seated in Plaza Gardens Restaurant at 12.30pm on Saturday, we were just inches away from the creators of the 20th Anniversary entertainments as they first explained and presented their creations before moving on to an open and informal Q&A discussion with the intimate audience of around 20 invited Disneyland Paris blog and fansite authors.

Kat de Blois began by presenting Disney Magic on Parade! in French (the only small part missing from the video), followed by Katy Harris introducing Disney’s 20th Anniversary Celebration Train in English, then Steve Davison talking about Disney Dreams! — which made up the bulk of the 40 minutes of questions which followed, revealing numerous insights into the new spectacular.

While I had the camera rolling the entire time, Kristof from Photos Magiques put a couple of questions direct to the panel. Including, at 42 minutes in, the million dollar question that is: “When did you decide to get rid of Central Plaza stage, and was it a tough decision?” The reaction, and the justification, is fascinating viewing, as is the entire presentation. We’ll revisit it more soon and go through all of the details revealed about the creation of Disney Dreams! in particular. But for now, we thank Kat, Steve and Katy for taking time out on such a busy day to meet a small number of their fans, and for allowing us to film and document the occasion so that everyone at home can be there, too.

Note: The sound quality has been improved as much as possible in editing, but due to the intimate setting it obviously won’t be perfect. Nevertheless, this is a unique all too rare chance to meet the people behind the “dreams”. And to think, as Steve reveals, it all began by spotting a Peter Pan motif in the design of Disneyland Hotel… Proving that Dreams can come from anywhere, but you never quite know where they’ll take you.

Thursday, 5th April 2012

[VIDEO] 20th & Disney Dreams! Q&A with Steve Davison, Kat de Blois, Katy Harris

Disneyland Paris 20th Anniversary Launch Weekend

This has been one epic upload, but here we go: the full, unedited 48-minute presentation and panel discussion with Creative Director Kat de Blois, Show Director Katy Harris and VP Parades & Spectaculars Steve Davison himself. Seated in Plaza Gardens Restaurant at 12.30pm on Saturday, we were just inches away from the creators of the 20th Anniversary entertainments as they first explained and presented their creations before moving on to an open and informal Q&A discussion with the intimate audience of around 20 invited Disneyland Paris blog and fansite authors.

Kat de Blois began by presenting Disney Magic on Parade! in French (the only small part missing from the video), followed by Katy Harris introducing Disney’s 20th Anniversary Celebration Train in English, then Steve Davison talking about Disney Dreams! — which made up the bulk of the 40 minutes of questions which followed, revealing numerous insights into the new spectacular.

While I had the camera rolling the entire time, Kristof from Photos Magiques put a couple of questions direct to the panel. Including, at 42 minutes in, the million dollar question that is: “When did you decide to get rid of Central Plaza stage, and was it a tough decision?” The reaction, and the justification, is fascinating viewing, as is the entire presentation. We’ll revisit it more soon and go through all of the details revealed about the creation of Disney Dreams! in particular. But for now, we thank Kat, Steve and Katy for taking time out on such a busy day to meet a small number of their fans, and for allowing us to film and document the occasion so that everyone at home can be there, too.

Note: The sound quality has been improved as much as possible in editing, but due to the intimate setting it obviously won’t be perfect. Nevertheless, this is a unique all too rare chance to meet the people behind the “dreams”. And to think, as Steve reveals, it all began by spotting a Peter Pan motif in the design of Disneyland Hotel… Proving that Dreams can come from anywhere, but you never quite know where they’ll take you.

Tuesday, 27th March 2012

New floats, changes, additions revealed during Disney Magic on Parade! soft openings

Disney Magic on Parade! (C) NewsDLRP.com

As previously announced, this is “soft opening” week for Disney Magic on Parade!, when the “new” daily parade arrives in the park for public dress rehearsals — revealing its many changes and additions. Yesterday saw the first performance of the revamped parade, and the first play of new theme song “Magic Everywhere” (which we previewed here) in the park. It certainly won’t be the last — unlike under its former guise as Disney’s Once Upon a Dream Parade, there’s no score throughout the parade, just the song played on a loop.

But what we’ve all been clamouring to see are the new floats, starting with the reworking of the original Dreams of Imagation opening float as Making Magic. Its sun, moon and hot air balloon for Mickey and Minnie were icons of the old parade, and they’ve been completely cleared off the storybook float to make way for a pink castle and three characters: the Fairy Godmother, the Blue Fairy and Merlin.

Opening the parade are the Three Good Fairies, who appear to move magically across the parade route using some kind of hands-free segway system. It’s a clever “floating” effect which, along with the nice mix of rarer characters here, might just about make up for the disappointing opening float itself, completely lacking the presence, quality and imagination of Dreams of Imagination.

Disney Magic on Parade! (C) NewsDLRP.com

Far more successful are the gorgeous, whimsical Princess Carriages, each uniquely decorated for their corresponding royalty. Though the three carriages for Snow White, Sleeping Beauty and Cinderella pass by close together, it still affords a far better chance to glimpse the princesses than the previous, rather overcrowded finale float.

Following these is the smaller, renamed Magic of Romance unit, now comprising three couples: Ariel and Prince Eric, Tiana and Prince Naveen, plus new additions Rapzunel and Flynn. For the first time since they arrived in park parades, the royalty of Aladdin and Beauty and the Beast are missing.

Disney Magic on Parade! (C) NewsDLRP.comDisney Magic on Parade! (C) NewsDLRP.com

From here, the parade consists of four relatively unchanged original floats, now renamed as Magic of Laughter & Fun, Magic of Friendship, Magic of Adventure and Magic of Fantasy. Within these we see the arrival of the White Rabbit, new puppet dancers alongside Pinocchio and Gepetto, bumblebees following Winnie the Pooh, colourful birds flying either side of Adventure and purple-clad pearly kings and queens following Mary Poppins. Each float has a hidden ’20’.

The grand finale is preceded by more dancers, floating on segways, dressed in pink, purple and orange. Repainted in similarly bright shades, Magic Everywhere is the new name for the former Dreams of Romance: Finale unit, now home to Donald Duck, Minnie Mouse, Chip ‘n’ Dale, Goofy and — yes — Duffy. Mickey Mouse, in a new variation of his classic sorcerer’s outfit, ends the parade atop the blue Fantasia-inspired hillside, dotted with anthropomorphised mops holding buckets.

Disney Magic on Parade! (C) NewsDLRP.com
Disney Magic on Parade! (C) NewsDLRP.com

Hidden in the back of the float yesterday was Tinker Bell, but today her place was apparently taken by Donald Duck. More changes could continue tomorrow and Thursday. On Friday 30th, however, the parade apparently reverts back to being Disney’s Once Upon a Dream Parade for a special farewell performance, including the last appearance (for now) of the spectacular Dreams of Power villain float, which will be sorely missed in the new parade.

It won’t be until Saturday, 31st March that we see Disney Magic on Parade! officially premiere at the special time of 3pm. On 1st April, the first advertised performance date, this reverts to 5pm for the rest of the 20th Anniversary year. DLRP Today will be there to cover both dates, so look out for more reports and our new HD videos next week. But for now, what are your first impressions?

MORE PHOTOS NewsDLRP.com

Saturday, 10th March 2012

St David’s Welsh Festival underway with special day of music, costume and fireworks

Disney doesn’t have a Welsh dragon in its repertoire of characters, but Mushu is only too happy to get his face on the cover of today’s special programme for St David’s Welsh Festival, a three-day event happening at Disneyland Paris this weekend. Though the festival officially runs from the 9th to 11th this year, providing the perfect weekend package for visitors from Wales, the main day of events within Disneyland Park itself is today. The programme itself is similar to previous years, though with Meet Mickey Mouse seeing the end of Fantasy Festival Stage‘s days as an actual theatre, the traditional Welsh folk choir has been displaced to the somewhat less fitting Chaparral Theatre in Frontierland.

In fact, the whole Cottonwood Creek Ranch area has been overrun by green, red and white; now the base for face painting, the Waun Ddyfal Choir and meet ‘n’ greets with Mickey and Minnie in their very exclusive Welsh folk costumes, above; a real rarity for character spotters that you’ll only see here.


At 4.30pm, before the main Disney’s Once Upon a Dream Parade, the traditional Welsh Festival pre-parade saw Mickey and Minnie travel down Main Street, U.S.A. in the bright red fire truck, decked out with Welsh flags, daffodils and leeks. In Disney Village, the avenue is filled with wooden market stalls selling all manner of Welsh crafts and merchandise. Then, as the park closes its gates at 10pm, the sky above Sleeping Beauty Castle comes alive with the special firework display to mark the occasion… albeit over a week late — St David’s Day itself always falls on 1st March.

The event is somewhat of an oddity in the annual calendar of the resort; one of only three national holidays recognised by the parks, including St Patrick’s Day and the Bastille Day fireworks, yet nowhere near as globally recognised as either as those. Falling conveniently in early March, however, it no doubt helps to fill a gap in the year, drawing in coach trips and extra custom from Wales, providing something fresh before the new Disney year in Paris traditionally begins each April.

Last year, Disneyland in California held a similar series of events at its comparable Big Thunder Ranch under the Family Fun Weekends name, with some nice branding and design work that Disneyland Paris could do well to be inspired by for its own celebration days.

MORE PHOTOS @InsideDLParis (Twitter)

Friday, 9th March 2012

“Do You Believe”, the new 20th Anniversary Celebration Train theme song – listen here!

Do you believe Disneyland Paris could have two brand new theme songs in a single 20th Anniversary year? You should — joining “Magic Everywhere” on the parade route from 1st April 2012 will be “Do You Believe”, a jazzy new chanson for Disney’s 20th Anniversary Celebration Train. After a year as the luminous Disney Dance Express, the old Character Express will return to its roots as a more conventional street cavalcade to transport the Disney characters up to Central Plaza. But alas, “Tous en Train”, the popular former soundtrack adapted from Tokyo Disneyland, which was remixed to breaking point with each consecutive re-theme of the train, is no more.

In its place, “Do You Believe” is a fresh new song by Scott Erickson, the go-to guy for Disney park entertainment songs who previously penned“Mickey’s Magical Party Time” for Disneyland Paris. Scott posted about the new music on his personal website in January, announcing: “I wrote a song with Valerie Vigoda that will be used in a character parade several times each day around the park. I’m always excited to get to work with my good friend, the music director at the park, Vasile Sirli!”

More of a self-contained song than the endlessly looped “Tous en Train”, the tune nevertheless follows all the regular conventions: overwrought “yeahs” and “oooh yeahs” over the opening, references to “it’s a small world after all” and making wishes upon stars. It’s bound to be a sensation.

Listen to the new song below and share your thoughts… Read More…

Friday, 9th March 2012

Listen to two full, high quality versions of “Magic Everywhere”, the new parade anthem

What better way to end the week than with a brand new, feel-good Disney parade anthem? Almost a month ago, we strained our ears to hear “Magic Everywhere” played at Euro Disney SCA’s Annual General Meeting, to nonplussed looks from besuited shareholders. Today, we can share not one but two full, high quality versions of the new Disney Magic on Parade! theme song, that will premiere in the park along with the 20th Anniversary events on 1st April 2012.

One is a four-minute “Parade Version” which, you guessed it, will be used during the parade itself, though whether that’ll be as a looped track or interspersed with other music still isn’t clear.

The other, meanwhile, is a shorter 2 minute 40 second “Song Version” that gives hope for a CD single release or perhaps a whole 20th Anniversary album, so we’ll actually be able to buy this music. The last major music release from Disneyland Paris was a Mickey’s Magical Party album in 2009.

Both versions of “Magic Everywhere” are embedded below… enjoy! Read More…

Friday, 2nd March 2012

Full-length Disneyland Paris 20th Anniversary trailer revealed with Big Ben cameo

From Spanish to English to French, the multilingual advertising campaign for Disneyland Paris’ 20th Anniversary expands across Europe and all leads to this: the full-length 40-second TV spot, featuring all the scenes in one commercial. Like the New Generation Festival TV spots, new character animation has been specially produced just for these adverts. Notably, as seen above, Peter Pan appearing across the tower of Big Ben in London. That particular scene is currently running as a short 10-second teaser in the UK, with the 40-second trailer only arriving nearer the launch date itself. Meanwhile France will see this full-length advert running from this Monday, 5th March — but you can watch it in HD below.

What do you think — does the ad do a good job selling the events?

Full Disneyland Paris 20th Anniversary TV spot follows… Read More…

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