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Disneyland Article
Meet The 19 Bayou Critters Moving Into Tianas Bayou Adventure
Brady Macdonald
A musical group of beavers, opossums, racoons, bobcats and other Audio-Animatronic bayou critters will play songs from the 2009 “Princess and the Frog” animated film when the transformation of Splash Mountain into Tiana’s Bayou Adventure is complete.

Tiana’s Bayou Adventure will open this summer in the Magic Kingdom at the Walt Disney World resort in Florida. Disneyland’s version of the revamped attraction will debut in the fall or winter of 2024.

Walt Disney Imagineering has revealed 19 critters in three bands that will play Zydeco, Rara-style and Afro-Cuban music on makeshift instruments and populate the bayou in the revamped Tiana’s Bayou Adventure attractions.

The first musical group of six animatronic bayou critters will play Zydeco-style music with the “Gonna Take You There” song from the film. The musicians will include:

Byhalia — The strong-willed beaver plays percussion.

Gritty — The high-energy rabbit plays on a washboard made from an automobile license plate.

Beau — The opossum uses her tail to play an upright gourd bass.

Apollo — The energetic squeezebox-playing raccoon is a natural-born storyteller.

Rufus — The harmonica-playing turtle can be both sincere and sarcastic. Rufus and Apollo are best friends who love to go on adventures.

Timoleon — The fiddle-playing otter is the elder statesman of the band.

The second musical group of six animatronic bayou critters will play Rara-style music imported from Haiti and often performed during New Orleans festivals and street processions. The band members will include:

Octavia — The adventurous daredevil bobcat kitten plays the Vaksin single-note horn that is part of the Rara music tradition.

Pawpaw — Octavia’s bobcat grandfather also plays the Vaksin horn.

Claude — The unintentionally funny horn player is the patriarch of a Louisiana Black Bear family that all play in the band.

Bernadette — The warm and supportive mama bear also plays horn in the band.

Sebastian — The baby bear is a drummer who loves to explore the bayou with his best friend Octavia.

Phina — The imaginative, optimistic and energetic gray fox also plays drums.

The third musical group of four frogs will play Afro-Cuban music with jazzy sounds and complex rhythms. The band members include:

Felipe — The band leader and piano player runs an exclusive bayou nightclub where the local fireflies dance the night away.

Mayra — The ambitious amphibian plays toe-tapping solos on her trumpet fashioned out of a flower blossom.

Mondo — The laid back and steady drummer plays congos made from bottle caps and acorns.

Isabel — The youngest member of the group also plays congos alongside Mondo.

Not all the critters in Tiana’s Bayou Adventure are musicians.

Gossipy best friends Gloria and Delores are a pair of frogs who keep a watchful eye on the bayou.

Mischievous Lari the armadillo seems quiet but always shows up when you least expect — usually with a “borrowed” thing that doesn’t belong to him.

The new Disney characters were created for the attraction by Imagineering lead concept designer Laura West in collaboration with Walt Disney Animation Studios.

“We chose a group of animals that are all commonly found in the Louisiana Bayou,” West said in a Disney video posted to Instagram.

West’s hand-drawn poses for each of the critters were turned into 3D models, transformed into mechanical designs and fabricated into Audio-Animatronic figures.

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