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Disneyland Article
Will Fans Want To See A Nighttime Show Without Fireworks

Sleeping Beauty Castle
Orange County Register
Brady Macdonald
January 17, 2019
January 28, 2019
Disneyland plans to roll out a new nighttime spectacular on Main Street USA that is heavy on projection mapping technology but without fireworks most nights as Sleeping Beauty Castle undergoes a months-long rehabilitation wrapped in construction scaffolding.

Mickey's Mix Magic swaps Disneyland's familiar nightly fireworks show for a laser, lighting and projection show set to a new musical score. The projection show will transform the buildings along Main Street U.S.A. and the façade of It's a Small World into a canvas painted with animated scenes set to music.

The new show will be complicated by the upcoming downtime for the Fantasmic nighttime spectacular and the water screens on the Rivers of America that normally serve as a secondary stage for the projection mapping imagery employed during nighttime spectaculars.

Mickey's Mix Magic is the marquee attraction in a new lineup of entertainment at the Disneyland Resort that includes a revamped parade, food festival, seasonal events tied to Valentine's Day and the Lunar New Year and a yearlong celebration of Mickey Mouse's 90th birthday.

The new events and entertainment are all part of a concerted push to keep Disneyland and Disney California Adventure full of visitors ahead of the debut of Star Wars: Galaxy's Edge in June.

Birthday Celebration

Disney has already kicked off what is expected to be a year-long celebration of Mickey Mouse and Minnie Mouse's 90th birthday.

The Get Your Ears On birthday celebration will be the theme for a parade, nighttime spectacular and a Valentine's celebration as well as food and merchandise throughout both parks.

Nighttime Spectacular

Mickey's Mix Magic dance party starts Friday, Jan. 18, with DJ Mickey spinning alternate electro-swing house music takes of familiar Disney songs as well as a new theme song, "It's a Good Time."

The projection show will employ more than two dozen video projectors and nearly 100 rooftop-mounted lighting fixtures throughout the park. The show features original animation of Disney characters amid kaleidoscopic patterns projected on the storefronts along Main Street USA and the Small World façade.

The nighttime spectacular includes songs from "The Jungle Book" ("I Wanna Be Like You"), "The Aristocats" ("Ev'rybody Wants To Be A Cat"), "Aladdin" ("Friend Like Me"), the Haunted Mansion attraction ("Grim Grinning Ghosts"), "Coco" ("Un Poco Loco") and "Frozen" ("Let It Go").

The water screens on the Rivers of America will serve as another viewing area for Mickey's Mix Magic after Fantasmic returns from its seasonal rehabilitation, which runs from Monday, Jan. 21 until March.

Fireworks will be added to the Mickey's Mix Magic projection show on select nights, which is expected to be on busy holidays and weekends.

"We created this as a non-fireworks show and then added fireworks to it," said Steven Davison, executive creative director for parades and spectaculars at Disney parks. "Some nights there are fireworks and it's kind of crazy. Some nights it's a big dance party."

The Get Your Ears On celebration continues at the Tomorrowland Terrace with a nightly dance party featuring Disney characters dancing to popular Disney songs.

Returning Parade

Mickey's Soundsational Parade returns to Disneyland starting Friday, Jan. 25, with a new emphasis on Mickey and Minnie's 90th birthday.

The 2011 Soundsational parade went on hiatus last year to make room for the Pixar Play Parade, which moved from Disney California Adventure to Disneyland in 2018. The parade's popularity and longevity surprised Davison.

"I thought it was going to last two years, maybe three years" Davison said. "It's still going strong today. It's really a fun and infectious parade."

The returning Soundsational parade will be led by a 25-foot-long float inspired by a super-sized version of a classic Mickey Mouse wooden pull toy. Chip and Dale will follow with a 12-foot-tall birthday cake float celebrating the twin birthdays.

A marching drum line will add a live beat to a procession of Disney characters, including Aladdin, Peter Pan and Mary Poppins.

The parade will feature more than two dozen Disney characters and more than 60 additional performers.

The design of the parade floats were inspired by musical styles ranging from military marches to Latin rhythms.

The Soundsational floats include:

Never Land unit with Tinker Bell playing mushrooms with her magic wand drum sticks

Princess and the Frog unit with a riverboat made from musical instruments

Tangled unit featuring Rapunzel's 34-foot-tall tower

Jungle Book unit with King Louie, Tarzan's Terk and dancing monkeys

The grand finale Mary Poppins unit boasts penguins riding carousel horses, flying kites and 11 chimney sweeps dancing to "Step In Time."

Food and Merchandise

The Get Your Ears On food line-up includes everything from donuts and churros to pizza and burgers.

The challenge for Disneyland chefs is adding a back story to every new dish or dessert they make for the park, said Disneyland culinary director John State.

"That's the difference between us and anybody outside of these gates," State said. "That's what makes us unique: The storytelling."

The Mickey beignets are particularly cute with red icing pants, yellow M&M buttons, mini Oreo ears and red, black and yellow sprinkles.

The Share Your Ears cheeseburger combo is the showstopper with a large burger topped with two mini burgers that create the familiar three-circle Mickey Mouse shape.

Each slice of the Spectacular Mickey Cheesy Pizza has a large slice of pepperoni connected to two smaller pepperoni slices that make for a not-so-hidden Mickey that cries out to be posted immediately to Instagram.

The new Get Your Ears On line of merchandise features a modern take on the classic pie-eyed images of Mickey and Minnie.

"It's really just about celebrating Mickey and celebrating being at the park," said Disneyland merchandise strategist Ashley Cortez. "We're really just looking at what Mickey was in 1928 to what he is today and just celebrating all the years in between."
Attractions Referenced


It's A Small World

Sleeping Beauty Castle

Parades Referenced

Mickey's Soundsational Parade

Lands Referenced

Main Street U.S.A.

Star Wars Galaxys Edge


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