Posts Tagged ‘Dreams’

Happy New Year

Wednesday, January 1st, 2014

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To all our Disney friends from around the world, we wish you all the best for 2014. May all your Disney wishes come true! We wish everybody a happy new year and hope to share a lot of Disney magic in the coming year. See you in the parks or somewhere on the World Wide Web where we can all enjoy the magic of Disney together.

Happy New Year!

The Making of Dreams

Wednesday, April 24th, 2013

Disneyland Paris has released an amazing video about the making of their beautiful Disney Dreams nighttime spectacular. See the team behind this great show and listen to their involvement in the creation of this magical Disney fairytale. Enjoy!

New Year’s Eve Program (Updated)

Thursday, December 27th, 2012

Disneyland Paris is inviting all there guests to celebrate the end of the old and the beginning of the new year. To do this they have a full day of fun planned.

On the last day of the year the gates of the Disneyland park will open at 9:30AM (Updated from 10AM. Incorrect on the program) and will not close anymore for that year as the park will close the next day at 1AM. Guest can go into the new year while they celebrate inside the park. The program for the day and evening is filled with lots of cool stuff, including the extra Christmas fun.

There will be the Christmas Tree Lighting Ceremony, Mary Christmas with Belle, Jack and Sally’s Cemetry, The Jingle Bell Boys; Dreams and a lot more. However the most important celebration for the evening is beginning of the new year with the fireworks. At midnight guest will get to see one of Disney’s magical New Year Fireworks and Show. No news on what to expect for the celebration, but the “show” in the title might be an indication there might be more then just the fireworks.

The Walt Disney Studios is also open until 1AM and also has a special New Year Eve program. This includes a Video Dance Party and a Lucky Dance Party. Again, the most important celebration part of the day will include a firework display. The Studios fireworks will light up in the air on some pop re-mix Disney tunes.

To see the special New Year Program click the pictures.

Picture and program courtesy of Disney.

From Paris to Orlando

Thursday, August 23rd, 2012

Congratulations to DLP’s very own Katy Harris!

The Show Director Creative Entertainment of Disneyland Paris since 2001 (who originally started at the resort in 1993 as musical performer) who was the Associate Director of the smash hit “Disney Dreams!” that premiered in the past April and also was responsible as Artistic Director Entertainment for the new “Meet Mickey!” inside the former Fantasy Festival Stage has made the next (and very big step) of her Disney career. While she retains the function as Show Director Creative Entertainment of the European Disney resort she has been called to the Magic Kingdom at Walt Disney World to be the show director of the park’s new spectacular “Celebrate the Magic” as was revealed Wednesday on the official Disney Parks Blog.

The official blog cites Katy Harris describing the projection show that will take place on the Cinderella Castle in the Magic Kingdom: it “takes us on a journey to the heart of the most beloved Disney stories and characters. This amazing show will magically transform Cinderella Castle with spectacular projection effects, choreographed to a new music soundtrack. The show will be full of emotion and storytelling, proving that, with imagination and magic in our hearts, anything is possible”. In the comments Shawn Slater, the communications manager for Walt Disney Parks and Resorts Creative Entertainment (who wrote the official blog entry), provides further details on the new show, stating that it will focus  “on our emotional connection to some of Disney’s most magical film moments and memorable characters”.

 Her experience with “Disney Dreams!” for which she worked with Steve Davison certainly should help her with this show that will replace the current “The Magic, The Memories and You!” that will end its run on September 3 (Labor Day) (the same day that the show will also end its run at Disneyland, Anaheim).

So if you want to see this new show directed by DLP’s Katy Harris – for when can you plan your visit to the Magic Kingdom? The official blog does not provide the exact opening date by Shawn Slater also states that it will entertain guests “beginning November”. So, got plans for your Christmas Disney trip already?

The Disney Dreams! Dinner

Monday, April 2nd, 2012

After yesterday’s official grand premiere with invited guests and media “Disney DREAMS!” tonight saw its first two performances open for all guests of the Disneyland Park. Yes, two performances – anticipating huge interest in particular from local fans a first performance was scheduled for 9:30 pm in addition to the second performance as regularly scheduled for park closure.

Based on the fact that Central Plaza and the top of the Main Street was packed with guests way in advance of the first performance already this sure was a wise decision. About 1,000 holders of the Annual Passport Dream got the opportunity to watch the second performance from the dedicated viewing area usually reserved for guests booking a “Disney Dreams! Dinner Package” at either Walt’s – an American Restaurant (on Main Street U.S.A.) or Silver Spur Steakhouse (in Frontierland). Therefore, today the number of dinner packages was even stricter limited and guests received only tickets for the VIP viewing area for the first performance of “Disney Dreams!”.

The VIP viewing area in question is located on top of the Main Street, stretching from the top entrance of Casey’s Corner all the way up to the beginning of Central Plaza. It encompasses the left half of the Main Street and the according walkway which apparently is supposed to offer viewing space for about 1,000 guests.

It should be noted that the area had filled up (with guests that had booked the dinner package) already more than 30 minutes prior to the performance time today. According to first reports it was packed, but not as tightly as the surrounding area leaving guests enough space to move a bit from side to side to find a good view – without the constant pushing and shoving that many guests had to endure that filled up Central Plaza and the right half of the Main Street, next to the roped of VIP area.

Interested in the food of the dinner package? Take a look at the left which shows the current adult and kids menus for the package at Walt’s – priced at 40 EUR for adults respectively 19.50 EUR for kids. Compared to similar offers of dinner packages for Fantasmic! at Disney’s Hollywood Studios in Walt Disney World or World of Color at Disney’s California Adventure, Anaheim the pricing at Disneyland Paris is reasonable, however, the food selection is limited as well since at this time only two table service restaurants participated in the offering and the capacity of the VIP viewing area is limited.

Please note: due to the space limitation in the viewing area reservations for the dinner package must be made in advance. However, seating times are flexible throughout the evening with the limitation that each restaurant enforces a cut-off time to ensure that its patrons have sufficient time to enjoy the dinner and get to the viewing area in time.

Steve Davison Meets Disney Fans

Monday, April 2nd, 2012

Fans of the Disney parks always love to hear some of the stories and secrets behind an attraction or show. A the occassion of the kick-off event for the 20th Anniversary celebration of Disneyland Paris selected members of fan operated websites covering the resort online were invited to meet and talk to Imagineer Steve Davison who created the resort’s new nighttime spectacular Disney DREAMS (as reviewed in an earlier post). After introducing the attendants to his work he happily answered questions.

As Steve Davison explained the first time he was approached to create what would eventually become “Disney DREAMS” was over two years ago. Steve Davison revealed that interestingly the first contact concerning him creating a spectacular for Disneyland Paris came from … the marketing department.

The team of Disneyland Paris wanted to create a spectacular using video mapping on the castle – i.e. projecting on the three dimensional surface of the castle turning it into a unique canvas utilizing the actual shape of the castle for added effect. Story-wise one of the first ideas was to have it centered around the concept of “dreaming”. So this corner stone was in place from the very beginning of the creative process. However, they certainly looked also into alternatives, to be specific a total of four concepts were considered.

Not surprisingly Steve Davison didn’t reveal anything specific about these other three concepts. However, he went into detail about the creation of the on concept that made the cut explaining that the idea of using Peter Pan in the story came from seeing his image all around the Disneyland Hotel at Disneyland Paris. The many decorations based on this character inspired him to use him as the main character. The team then developed the idea further up to the point where they decided to choose Peter Pan’s shadow as the main story telling character. However, the various scenes feature numerous additional characters – including Quasimodo who was specifically picked because of the French location. This local aspect is also reflected in the team involved in the creation and execution of the spectacular which included US and French Imagineers – as well as the Pixar crew.

The process to laser map the castle to allow for the creation of the projections for its surface took three months as Steve Davison explained. As the animation was done in the USA. “Disney DREAMS” features a large amount of new, specifically created animation, some of which was handled by the Pixar Studios since it involved their characters – for example Remy from Disney Pixar’s Ratatouille. As far as the dialogue is concerned the team ventured to as many performances as possible by the original voice actors. For some parts they were able to repurpose old recordings after research in the studios’ archives while other parts were newly recorded specifically for the spectacular.

The completed sequences were then tested on a 3 meter replica of the castle erected in California. Differing from past projections on DLP’s castle for “Disney DREAMS” the projections are not only limited to the castle’s front but also wrap around the sides. This opens up whole different perspectives when watching the spectacular from different angles.

Compared to the firework displays featured at Disneyland Paris since opening day “Disney DREAMS” allows to keep a larger part of the park open during the night (as there is only much more limited security perimeter required). This also means that guests will not need to be pushed as far back over the Central Plaza into the Main Street creating more viewing space allowing up to 15,000 guests to enjoy the spectacular from various viewing areas –  even from the sides of the castle. While weather conditions could impact the spectacular they do not necessarily result in cancellations – not even in case of high winds. Instead these might only force the team on-site for the performance to stop the use of fireworks – but the spectacular could still go on featuring all other elements which still provide a magical experience to guests. Speaking of viewing points – Central Plaza certainly will be a prime spot. Steve Davison told the attendants that he specifically requested the stage placed in the center of the hub to be removed.

The unique setting for “Disney DREAMS” on and around the castle with the inclusion of specifically installed water fountains in the castle’s moat certainly created unique challenges. And as in every project of this scope not every vision can be executed in the end. For example the idea of projection on the water fountains from the back and the front was dropped as it was impossible to get them fit into each other as the water was always moving differently depending on wind and weather conditions. While it would have added an extra dimension, they had at some point to admit that it just didn’t work out.

As “World of Color” created by Steve Davison for Disney’s California adventure “Disney DREAMS” can be changed depending on the seasons. For example a new sequence could be added for the Halloween or the Christmas season. Although creating these might take a while, swapping them in once they are ready can be done with a push of a button. This allows the resort to run one version of the spectacular in the first night and a different version the following night.

The mix of various different (technical) elements also required the installation of various new equipment on and around the castle and the hub area. Some of that equipment is still visible at the moment or only temporarily covered at the moment during daytime. However, the plans call for all equipment to be themed / covered / hidden during daytime to limit the intrusion as far as possible and retain the magical views. Steve Davison emphasized that these plans are still moving ahead and everything should be hidden well in a couple of weeks.

Furthermore, some of the equipment will also be used for entertainment offerings besides “Disney DREAMS”. In particular the fountains in the moat are already programmed to present several times daily a little fountain show featuring music from the Disney Princess movies – in fact guests can already enjoy this experience since Saturday March 31st.

Even before the grand premiere speculations appeared online whether the spectacular might be copied for Tokyo Disneyland since executives of the Japanese resort visited Disneyland Paris recently – but Steve Davison was able to solve that mystery with one (or two) short sentences: NO. While they looked at the spectacular they will not get their own version. However, a new parade for Tokyo Disney is in the works – and their visit was related to that project.

Disney DREAMS Premiere

Sunday, April 1st, 2012

On Saturday March 31st Disneyland Paris officially kicked-off its 20th Anniversary celebration including the premiere of the new “Disney Magic on Parade!”. However, the highlight of the event certainly was the grand premiere of the new nighttime spectacular “Disney DREAMS”.

To bridge the gap between the daytime program and the premiere of the nighttime spectacular the invited guests attend a gala dinner in the convention tent next to Lake Disney. After the dinner guest were treated to a “review” of 20 years of Disney magic in the making. The video presentation featured photos from various construction sites from the past all over the resort and every new attraction or show that opened during the first 20 years of Disneyland Paris. After this “history lesson” current CEO Philippe Gass welcomed the guests on Town Square. promising a stunning evening with a fantastic new spectacular.

As the invited guests walked down the Main Street to claim their spot on Central Plaza for Disney DREAMS one could feel the anticipation grow even further – especially since as word already spread that cast members who attended the special cast member preview on Thursday night had been amazed by the spectacular and greeted it with thunderous applause and cheers.

Soon enough the lights went down … the guests fell silent … and … the castle would slowly light up with colourful patterns and magical pictures, fireworks erupt from the castle and the all new soundtrack featuring famous Disney melodies and songs filled the air (additional loudspeakers were added around Central Plaza not just for the event but for the regular performances of Disney DREAMS as well).

As the first water screens rise up guest are introduced (or one could say: re-introduced) to the main character featured in the story: Peter Pan (speaking English) who is then joined by Wendy (speaking French). However, some might call the Sleeping Beauty Castle the main character of the spectacular as it is a stunning canvas that the Imagineers under the leadership of Steve Davison painted the magic on.

As Peter Pan is calling out for Tinkerbell to help out with some pixie dust form wendy he is surprised by the playfulness of his shadow. Trying to get away from him Peter Pan’s shadow is knocking the magic out of the famous second star to the right and is spreading it all over the castle – and thereby setting up the main element of the storyline for the spectacular as Peter Pan’s shadow then travels through the settings of various Disney movies that are appearing thanks to the magic of the Second Star to the Right that has covered the castle.

— SPOILER WARNING … the following paragraphs describes details of Disney DREAMS!

The shadow of Peter Pan first meets Lumiere (from Disney’s Beauty and the Beast) who sets an up-beat mood with a performance of “C’est la fête” (the French version of “Be Our Guest”). As his journey through the magical worlds of Disney continues in the spectacular Peter Pan’s shadow gets to meet many more characters including Remy (from Disney Pixar Ratatouille), Quasimodo (from Disney’s Hunchback of Notre Dame – and star of the resort’s 5th anniversary celebration), Mary Poppins, the cast of Disney’s Jungle Book, Rapunzel (from Disney’s Tangled) and of course a selection of Disney villains.

The beauty of the show however is how the story is told through a unique combination of various elements. Foremost there are the high definition projections of the characters and specially animated scenes on the castle as well as on water screens. However the spectacular is also featuring fountains shooting high up from the castle’s moat, fireworks around the castle as well as on the castle itself, flames errupting from the castle walls and the surrounding area, light and laser effect and of course last but not least a wonderful new musical score.

By combining the various elements – most of them never seen at Disneyland Paris in this setting before or greatly improved – Steve Davison and his team have created a whole new experiences that continues to surprise over and over again throughout the approximate 20 minutes the spectacular lasts. In one scene the effects even give the illusion of the castle moving side to side – simply amazing.

Peter Pan was the right choice as the story’s main characrer, or – to be more correct – his shadow was as jumps from scene to scene and even takes a short flight on a magical carpet. Many of the show pieces have a real wow factor and got immediate reactions from the guests attending the grand premiere. From the first second on the spectacular captures the attention of its audience fully – no matter the age of the guests. Some of the highlights among the scenes – of which there are too many to mention them all – are the appearance of Remy (as he looks amazing), Quasimodo jumping around the Notre Dame (which is simply breathtaking), the waterfalls projections covering down the castle, the mechanical “steam-punk” creation engulfing all visible sides of the castle or the fire shooting up the walls of the castle.

It’s important to understand that it is not a fireworks display, but that the firework is used as one of many elements to enhance a true Disney spectacular. Fireworks and fireworks effects are utilized in many scenes, but they are designed not to be the center piece but to support the spectacular and in particular the projections of animated scenes based on the beloved Disney classics on the canvas, that is known during the day as “the castle”. However, the spectacular also is not “just a movie projection”, neither is it a fountain show. In the end Disney DREAMS is a magical spectacular of its own kind.

There is so much going on in this nighttime spectacular, and a spectacular it is, that it is simply impossible to see it all on the first time. This experience will keep guests inside the park and will keep them coming back to see it again and again. It’s a fantastic spectacular that will put a smile on many guests faces and that will be remembered for a long time. In other words: a fantastic job done by a fantastic group of Imagineers who worked very hard to make sure that Disneyland Paris would get nothing but the best.

 

Andy, member of DLP.info, attended the event as invited guest of the resort.

Are YOU ready for DREAMS

Saturday, March 31st, 2012

The gala dinner for the guests awaiting the grand premiere of DREAMS has finished. Invited guests and media has walked through the Disney Village and Fantasy Gardends, where first illuminated street acts greeted them. #

Once at the gates of Disneyland Park guests stepped onto a special “20th Anniversary red carpet” (as also used inside the Disneyland Hotel’s lobby) which is stretching from the gates, under the 20th anniversary logo lit up on the Main Street Station and into the Main Street, lined by cast members.

On Town Square more illuminated street acts provided photo opportunities and entertainment. But while the acts in Fantasia Gardens were general i.e. “non-Disney” features on Town Square giant Disney figures such as the Genie (from Aladdin) and Tigger (from Winnie the Pooh) awaited the guests.

Fans who have visited Disney’s California Adventure, in Anaheim, might recognize the figures as they are featured as pre-show entertainment for Disney’s World of Color there.

 

Special thanks to our Mousekingdom Blog Co-Author Andrea for providing all pictures from tonight’s gala dinner and the pre-DREAMS entertainment!

Limited Anniversary Pin

Wednesday, March 28th, 2012

Disneyland will be celebration its twentieths birthday on April 12th 2012 and guest will have the chance to celebrate this together with Disney. This can be done with the new “Disney Dreams” nighttime show, while watching the new Parade, meeting the Characters or while riding an attraction. There is always a way to celebrate this great day. But what happens when the celebration is over and you have to make your way home? Well, in that case you can always take some of the magic home. It is especially nice when you can can find some related items to the event or celebration. It will be no surprise that Disney will make sure guest will be able to find just that, a nice collectible to take home.

One of these collectibles will be a new, special and limited Disneyland Paris 20th anniversary pin. The pin will have one of its icons showing, namely the beautiful Disneyland Hotel’s Mickey Mouse clock that can be seen from the Fantasia Gardens in front of the main entrance. The pin will have two dates on it; 1992, the year of opening, and 2012, the year of the celebration. It will also have the official opening day on it; April 12th. This beauty will be available in a limited quantity of only 1000 pieces. It’s therefor advised to get yours as early as possible to avoid missing out on it.

Castle Stage Construction

Tuesday, February 14th, 2012

What’s going on at the Castle Stage? That is the question that has been popping up over the last couple of days in many discussions among fans of Disneyland Paris.

Earlier word had spread that the entertainment department was looking into finally utilizing the stage once again for a production after a Halloween spectacular on the stage proofed popular with guests – especially the younger ones thanks to its interactivity with most of guests standing right in front of the stage (a necessity since the majority of the benches that formed the original auditorium have been removed when the floors was repaved).

Then another rumor popped up: supposedly one of the water screens for the nightly spectacular “DREAMS” for the 20th anniversary might be placed right behind the stage transforming the space in front of it into another main viewing area for the show. However, the projectors for the central projections have been placed on top of the Main Street buildings, so would not cover this side of the castle.

While neither the first nor the second rumor have been official debunked or confirmed suddenly another construction project has popped up at the Castle Stage recently. Or to be more correct: on respectively in the stage. At the back of the stage, right in the middle a rectangular hole was cut into the stage floor. In the meantime a temporary tent has been erected over this construction site as well to allow the work crews to continue their job despite the punishing temperatures. However, this still leaves the question open what is going on there … is it connected to “DREAMS”? Or maybe to a different entertainment production??

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