‘Frozen – Live at the Hyperion’, now Open at Disney California Adventure

The wait is finally over and, ‘Frozen – Live at the Hyperion’ is now open. Replacing the very popular Aladdin the new show has a lot to live up to. But with an opening cast and crew of more than 200, six full musical numbers and a 2,200 square foot video wall, that should make for a unforgettable theatrical experience.

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Check out some clips from Frozen – Live at the Hyperion:

 

According to the official press release, the show is directed by Tony Award® nominated Director Liesl Tommy, and features elaborate costumes and sets, stunning special effects, and show-stopping production numbers.

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Disney Creative Entertainment, the arm of Walt Disney Imagineering responsible for live theatrical entertainment at Disney Parks, has produced this new stage interpretation of “Frozen – Live at the Hyperion” with all of the creativity and resources of its predecessor “Aladdin – A Musical Spectacular” which ran for a remarkable 13 years at the 2,000 seat Hyperion Theater.

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As would be expected from Walt Disney Imagineering and Disney Parks, new technologies – especially with projections, fabrics and special effects — will delight audiences in new and unexpected ways.  Guests are immersed in the world of “Frozen” from the moment they enter the theater and are surrounded by a specially lit “Aurora” curtain. As the musical unfolds, the scenic design and large moving set pieces create a cinema-style energy enhanced by state-of-the-art projections that create dynamic environments for the performers. Custom sound design envelops the audience in music and audio effects. And, of course, there will be snow throughout the interior of the theater – on stage and over the audience.

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“Frozen – Live at the Hyperion” is based on the Walt Disney Animation Studios “Frozen,” which is the number one animated feature of all time. It is the winner of two Academy Awards (2014) for Best Animated Feature and Best Original Song.

“While our production of ‘Frozen’ stays true to the heart and soul of the film, we have adapted it for the stage so it’s truly a musical theater production that befits our beautiful Hyperion Theater,” said Dana Harrel, creative entertainment executive with Walt Disney Imagineering.  “The goal of this creative team is to take all audiences – including those who know the film, and those new to these characters­ – on this exciting and touching adventure with Anna and Elsa.

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“We know that for many in the audience — adults and children alike – this production will be a first or rare theater-going experience, and we want to make it as magical as possible.”

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The new adaptation features music and lyrics by the creators of the film score, Kristen Anderson-Lopez (“In Transit,” “Up Here”) and Robert Lopez (“Avenue Q,” “The Book of Mormon,” “Up Here”), and is adapted from the screenplay by four-time Tony Award® nominee Chad Beguelin (“Aladdin – A Musical Spectacular” at Hyperion Theater; Broadway: “Gotta Dance,” “Aladdin,” “The Wedding Singer,” “Elf”).

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Frozen – Live at the Hyperion” is directed by Tommy, who was recently nominated for a Tony Award® for her Broadway show “Eclipsed.” The choreographer is Christopher Windom and this is his seventh collaboration with Tommy.  The musical supervisor/arranger/adaptor is Jason Michael Webb, whose Broadway credits include “The Color Purple,” “Motown: The Musical,” “Violet,” and “Memphis.” Clint Ramos, the principal costume designer, was also nominated this year for a Tony Award® for his work on “Eclipsed.”

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“I am approaching ‘Frozen’ as I would any new work – to search the story for what resonates most emotionally,  which is the story of the relationship between Anna and Elsa, their coming of age and conquering their worst fears,” explains Director Tommy. “It’s what made the movie so intensely satisfying and fresh. The theatrical version of ‘Frozen’ that my designers and I are creating for the Hyperion builds on the film’s emotional intensity using beautiful performances, thrilling choreography and the most cutting-edge design elements.”

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A great amount of creative energies have been employed to bring “Frozen – Live at the Hyperion” to the stage.  Harrel and Tommy have assembled a team of creative talent from both Broadway and Disney to create this production. The principal designers are Robert Brill (scenery), Charles Lapointe (wigs), David Weiner (lighting), Aaron Rhyne (projections) and Broken Chord (audio), and Ramos (costumes).

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The challenge of bringing the animated non-human characters of Sven and Olaf to the stage was assigned to master puppet designer Michael Curry, who co-designed with director Julie Taymor the animal creations of “The Lion King” on Broadway, the magic mirror in “Snow White: An Enchanted Musical” at Fantasyland Theatre, and many other Disney parades, shows and projects, as well as projects for Cirque du Soleil and the Metropolitan Opera. Curry’s intricate designs created for Olaf and Sven allow the performers to connect with the characters and bring them to life on stage in new ways.

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An entirely separate two-act Broadway production of “Frozen” is currently being prepared by Disney Theatrical Productions and is slated to join Disney Theatrical’s New York productions of “Aladdin” and “The Lion King” for spring 2018 at a theater to be announced. It will have a pre-Broadway engagement starting in summer 2017 in Denver.

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Soarin’ Around the World Takes Flight This Summer at Disney California Adventure Park

New Version of Popular U.S. Attraction Debuts in China with Thrilling Bird’s-Eye Views Of Earth’s Scenic Wonders

ANAHEIM, Calif. – Imagine a wind-through-hair flight above The Great Wall of China, a lift-your-feet-or-they’ll-touch journey over the Great Pyramids of Egypt or a seat-of-your-pants dash through the Eiffel Tower in Paris.

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These are just a few of the more than a dozen breathtaking – and innovative – ways guests will be able to experience the wonders of the world on the groundbreaking Soarin’ Around the World, which premieres June 17 at Disney California Adventure at the Disneyland Resort in Southern California, just after the attraction’s world debut at the Shanghai Disney Resort.

Soarin’ Around the World will be located in the Grizzly Peak Airfield area of Disney California Adventure, utilizing the very hanger where Disney’s original “Soarin” attraction first flew.

As the next generation of popular Soarin’ attractions, Soarin’ Around the World is an exhilarating aerial adventure that immerses guests in a multi-sensory experience, complete with stunning sights, spectacular sounds and even subtle scents.

Guests won’t just see these gorgeous landscapes with their eyes. They’ll use all their senses to feel, smell and hear the world through this thrilling experience that could only be created by Disney.

Employing high-definition, laser-projected footage and innovative motion-based ride technology, all developed by Walt Disney Imagineering, Soarin’ Around the World lifts 87 guests at a time 40 feet aloft into an 80-foot projection screen dome. The effect is that guests’ entire field of vision is filled with panoramic beauty, giving them the sensation that they are actually flying over the globe’s grand landmarks, natural and manmade.

In Shanghai the attraction goes by a different name, Soaring Over the Horizon, to better fit its location in Adventure Isle at Shanghai Disneyland because of its spirit of exploration and discovery.

Soarin’ Around the World is also enhanced by its majestic musical score, composed by Bruce Broughton, based on the original Soarin’ score by the late film and television composer Jerry Goldsmith, and performed by the London Studio Orchestra.

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Beginning on April 1st 2016, The Food & Wine Festival returns to Disney California Adventure. Every weekend this month-long festival, will celebrate some of the best of delicious California cuisine. A distinguishing feature will be new Festival Marketplaces, where guests can sip and savor delicious flavors from throughout the state of California. The Disney California Adventure Food & Wine Festival will also include culinary demonstrations, appearances by celebrity chefs and informative seminars.

More info can be found on the Disney Parks Blog.

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