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It’s Almost Time for the Diamond Mad T Party at Disney California Adventure Park

posted on May 6th, 2015 by Shawn Slater, Communications Manager, Walt Disney Parks and Resorts Creative Entertainment


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When the Disneyland Resort Diamond Celebration kicks off May 22, you’re invited to take a trip down the Rabbit Hole and experience the Diamond Mad T Party, a splendiferous new version of the popular nighttime entertainment experience at Disney California Adventure park. Diamond Mad T Party will feature heart-pounding live entertainment, interactive fun and delectable delights all wrapped in sparkling décor and seasoned with some unique tributes to 60 years of Disneyland Resort.

During the Diamond Mad T Party, the main stage explodes in a swirling kaleidoscope of sparkle, shine and sound. The Mad Hatter has assembled the most amazing and talented band this side of Wonderland, featuring live contemporary and classic rock favorites as well as newly mashed-up Disney tunes given a rare Mad T Party twist! And when the band is not onstage, the White Rabbit DJ takes over and plays the latest and hottest dance tunes around.

Tweedle Dee and Tweedle Dum, our whimsical and mischievous hosts for the party, have taken a trip down the Rabbit Hole and back in time, where they found themselves inside the magical Disney Vault. Eager to share where they have been and what they have seen, Dee and Dum have loaded their trunk and brought back some fanciful artifacts to add to the Hatter’s Diamond Mad T Party!

Nearby at the House of Cards, Mad T Party guests have opportunities aplenty to dance and play along to interactive activities or just chill out with a cold drink from the Drink Me Bar or Chiller truck. New this go ‘round is a fantastical photo location created in the spirit of the Diamond Mad T Party while paying tribute to Disney past.

In addition, fans of the Hottest Deck in Town will be dealt an extremely lucky hand, as the Hollywood Backlot Stage becomes the dazzling new location for this talented dance crew. They will be bringing their high-energy and infectious performances to the party with a brand new look on their brand new stage.

So get practicing your Futterwacken and other dance moves. We’re just a couple weeks away from all the muchness that will be the sparklingly, spectacularly delightful Diamond Mad T Party!

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Exclusive Sneak Peek of Disney•Pixar’s ‘Inside Out’ Coming to Epcot This Summer

posted on May 1st, 2015 by Shawn Slater, Communications Manager, Walt Disney Parks and Resorts Creative Entertainment


Have you ever looked at someone and wondered what’s going on inside their head? Disney•Pixar’s original new film “Inside Out” takes us inside the mind to find out, and this summer at Epcot, you can go inside “Inside Out” for a special preview of the movie. This sneak peek will offer guests an advance look at a sequence from the film, complete with special in-theater effects and an exclusive introduction from the filmmakers.

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“Inside Out” ventures inside the mind of 11-year-old Riley and introduces us to the Emotions that guide her: Joy, Sadness, Fear, Anger and Disgust. Based in Headquarters, the five Emotions are hard at work, led by lighthearted optimist Joy (voice of Amy Poehler), whose mission is to make sure Riley stays happy. “Inside Out” is directed by Academy Award® winner Pete Docter (“Monsters, Inc.”, “Up”) and produced by Jonas Rivera (“Up”) with an original score by Michael Giacchino (“The Incredibles,” “Ratatouille,” “Up”).

This sneak peek opportunity begins May 30, following our special preview of Disney’s “Tomorrowland,” playing at the Imagination Pavilion theater at Epcot now through May 24. When visiting Epcot, you can also enjoy the “Inside Out” Emotion Garden as part of the Epcot International Flower and Garden Festival.

Disney•Pixar’s “Inside Out” opens in theaters on June 19, 2015.

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American Music Machine Arrives at Epcot at Walt Disney World Resort

posted on May 1st, 2015 by Shawn Slater, Communications Manager, Walt Disney Parks and Resorts Creative Entertainment


There’s new music in the air this week at the American Adventure pavilion at Epcot! A five-member, contemporary a cappella group has made its debut at the America Gardens Theatre.

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American Music Machine brings a vibrant musical energy to the stage, with performances that convey the global influence of American popular music. The group’s repertoire includes a diverse range of contemporary and classic American pop hits, all presented in a unique style created by ground-breaking vocal arranger Tim Davis, whose previous credits include the hit TV series “Glee.”

Look for American Music Machine at the America Gardens Theatre, Wednesday through Sunday each week, beginning April 29.

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Mickey Mouse and Friends to Wear Sparkling New Ensembles for Disneyland Resort Diamond Celebration

posted on April 14th, 2015 by Shawn Slater, Communications Manager, Walt Disney Parks and Resorts Creative Entertainment


We’ve already shared some of the sparkling new decor, entertainment and merchandise coming for the Disneyland Resort Diamond Celebration beginning May 22. Today, I’m excited to tell you that some of our biggest stars will also sparkle for the celebration!

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Disneyland park guests will have the chance to see Mickey Mouse, Minnie Mouse, Goofy, Pluto, Donald Duck, Daisy Duck, Chip and Dale in these dazzling new duds in Town Square on Main Street, U.S.A., throughout the Disneyland Resort Diamond Celebration. We’ll have more about the celebration to share with you soon, so keep an eye on the Disney Parks Blog and join the conversation with the hashtag #Disneyland60!

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Behind the Scenes of ‘Paint the Night’ Parade, Coming for the Disneyland Resort Diamond Celebration

posted on April 13th, 2015 by Shawn Slater, Communications Manager, Walt Disney Parks and Resorts Creative Entertainment


Opening May 22 as part of the Disneyland Resort Diamond Celebration, the spectacular new “Paint the Night” parade will feature some of the most innovative floats, vibrant costumes, dazzling special effects, unforgettable music and energetic performances ever presented at Disneyland Resort.

The Entertainment team has been working around the clock to get the “Paint the Night” parade ready for its big debut. Today, we’re pleased to offer you a glimpse at one of our performer rehearsals with the Fiber Fairies from the opening unit and the Cars Crew, who join Mack Truck and Lightning McQueen. Once everything comes together, these talented performers will become an integral part of the show.

The music for the “Paint the Night” parade, a bit of which can be heard in the video, features the wonderful tune, “When Will I See You Again,” by the band Owl City. The song gives a great, contemporary sound to this new, state-of-the-art nighttime parade. And when you see “Paint the Night” in person, be sure to listen closely. You may just hear some musical surprises woven into the soundtrack!

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It’s Almost Time for an Exclusive Sneak Peek of Disney’s ‘Tomorrowland’ – Only in Disney Parks!

posted on April 10th, 2015 by Shawn Slater, Communications Manager, Walt Disney Parks and Resorts Creative Entertainment


You wanted to see “Tomorrowland.” Here it comes!

Our sneak peek of the new Disney movie begins Friday, April 17, at Disneyland park. Head over to the Tomorrowland Theater for an exclusive look at scenes from the film, complete with special in-theater effects. And you can continue your “Tomorrowland” experience by exploring an all-new exhibit in the Starcade, featuring original props and production artwork.

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For those of you visiting Walt Disney World Resort in Florida, you can catch this Disney Parks-exclusive preview of “Tomorrowland” at Epcot, where the sneak peek begins its special engagement at the Imagination Pavilion in Future World on Saturday, April 18, and continues through May 24. At Epcot, you’ll also get a close-up look at one of the jet packs used in the film, along with a display of conceptual art and photos from the set.

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In Disney’s riveting mystery adventure “Tomorrowland,” a jaded scientist and an optimistic teen embark on a danger-filled mission to unearth the secrets of an enigmatic place somewhere in time and space. Directed by two-time Oscar® winner Brad Bird, “Tomorrowland” stars Academy Award® winner George Clooney as scientist and former boy-genius Frank Walker and Britt Robertson as Casey Newton. Featuring a screenplay by “Lost” writer and co-creator Damon Lindelof and Brad Bird, from a story by Lindelof & Bird & Jeff Jensen, “Tomorrowland” promises to take audiences on a thrill ride of nonstop adventures through new dimensions that have only been dreamed of.

Here’s a look at the latest trailer for “Tomorrowland,” opening in theaters on May 22, 2015.

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Frank Oz and Ian McDiarmid Among the Stars Announced for Star Wars Weekends 2015 at Disney’s Hollywood Studios

posted on April 3rd, 2015 by Shawn Slater, Communications Manager, Walt Disney Parks and Resorts Creative Entertainment


To paraphrase a certain scruffy looking nerf herder, I’ve flown from one side of the galaxy to the other, and I’ve seen a lot of cool stuff … but nothing as cool as Star Wars Weekends. This year’s event is shaping up to be among the best, with a new show, new locations for merchandise and autograph opportunities and a galaxy of stars that includes returning favorites and luminaries making their first hyperspace jump to Star Wars Weekends!

So shall we dispense with the pleasantries?
Here are the celebrities scheduled to appear for Star Wars Weekends 2015 (entertainment is subject to change):

Weekend I (May 15 – 17)
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  • Ian McDiarmid: Senator/Emperor Palpatine (Star Wars: The Phantom Menace; Star Wars: Attack of the Clones; Star Wars: Revenge of the Sith, Star Wars: The Empire Strikes Back, Star Wars: Return of the Jedi)
  • Amy Allen: Aayla Secura (Star Wars: Attack of the Clones, Star Wars: Revenge of the Sith)
  • Tiya Sircar: Sabine Wren (Star Wars Rebels)

Weekend II (May 22 – 24)

  • Warwick Davis: Wald, Wicket W. Warrick (Star Wars: The Phantom Menace; Star Wars: Return of the Jedi)
  • Silas Carson: Ki-Adi-Mundi, Nute Gunray (Star Wars: The Phantom Menace; Star Wars: Attack of the Clones; Star Wars: Revenge of the Sith)
  • Vanessa Marshall: Hera Syndulla (Star Wars Rebels)

Weekend III (May 29 – 31)

  • Warwick Davis: Wald, Wicket W. Warrick (Star Wars: The Phantom Menace; Star Wars: Return of the Jedi)
  • Daniel Logan: Boba Fett (Star Wars: Attack of the Clones; Star Wars: The Clone Wars)
  • Steve Blum: Zeb Orrelios (Star Wars Rebels)

Weekend IV (June 5 – 7)

  • Ray Park: Darth Maul (Star Wars: The Phantom Menace)
  • Jeremy Bulloch: Boba Fett (Star Wars: The Empire Strikes Back; Star Wars: Return of the Jedi)
  • Ashley Eckstein: Ahsoka Tano (Star Wars: The Clone Wars; Star Wars Rebels)

Weekend V (June 12 – 14)
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  • Frank Oz: Yoda (Star Wars: The Phantom Menace; Star Wars: Attack of the Clones; Star Wars: Revenge of the Sith, Star Wars: The Empire Strikes Back, Star Wars: Return of the Jedi; Star Wars Rebels)
  • Ray Park: Darth Maul (Star Wars: The Phantom Menace)
  • Peter Mayhew: Chewbacca (Star Wars: Revenge of the Sith; Star Wars: A New Hope; Star Wars: The Empire Strikes Back; Star Wars: Return of the Jedi)
  • Taylor Gray: Ezra Bridger (Star Wars Rebels)

Of course, Star Wars Weekends host James Arnold Taylor (Obi-Wan Kenobi in Star Wars: The Clone Wars and Star Wars Rebels) will be appearing every week, and in addition to Ashley Eckstein’s Weekend IV guest spot, she will also be joining us every day of the event as host of “Padawan Mind Challenge – Family Edition.”

Details are still coming together for the event, but some of the highlights of what’s new for Star Wars Weekends 2015 include:

  • Star Wars: Rebels” – Relive the adventurous twists and turns of the first exciting season of the Disney XD series “Star Wars: Rebels,” in an all-new show with Star Wars Weekends host James Arnold Taylor and a special guest from the show’s voice cast … along with a few surprises!
  • Autograph Opportunities – For the first time, autograph sessions with Star Wars celebrities will be held in an indoor location, just off Commissary Lane near Star Tours – The Adventure Continues. For complete details about autograph opportunities, be sure to visit StarWarsWeekends.com prior to your visit.
  • Darth’s Mall – Can’t find the droids you’re looking for? Head over to this new complex of shops near Streets of America for the best selection of Star Wars merchandise in this galaxy or any other!

All this, plus dozens of Star Wars characters appearing throughout the park, yummy Star Wars-inspired treats and the spectacular fireworks finale, “Symphony in the Stars.” It just goes to show you that Star Wars Weekends is as close to the Force as you can get!

Believe it or not, we still have more to share with you in the weeks ahead, so keep checking Disney Parks Blog and StarWarsWeekends.com for updates, and keep the conversation going on social media using #SWW2015!

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Live Music Expanding at Disneyland Park Beginning July 17

posted on March 31st, 2015 by Shawn Slater, Communications Manager, Walt Disney Parks and Resorts Creative Entertainment


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Music always has been very important to the guest experience at Disneyland, creating a magical connection to the Happiest Place on Earth. During the Disneyland Resort Diamond Celebration, music will become an even bigger part of the storytelling within Disneyland park. Beginning July 17, the 60th anniversary of the Disneyland Resort, two changes are coming to our music program.

First, the beloved musical acts in Disneyland park will increase the number of performances throughout the day, and second, the iconic Disneyland Band will premiere a new sound – with new musical arrangements and themed performances – along with more musicians and high-energy choreography. These enhancements will provide a new level of musical entertainment throughout the day.

We’ll have more to share about the exciting updates coming to the Disneyland Band (including how Disneyland park guests will be able to join their performances!) so keep an eye on the Disney Parks Blog.

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Exclusive Sneak Peek of Disney’s ‘Tomorrowland’ Coming to Disney Parks in April

posted on March 26th, 2015 by Shawn Slater, Communications Manager, Walt Disney Parks and Resorts Creative Entertainment


What if there was a place … a secret place where nothing is impossible?

You wanna go? Well, soon you can, when Disney’s riveting mystery adventure “Tomorrowland” makes its debut in theaters. In the meantime, visitors to Tomorrowland at the Disneyland Resort and Epcot at Walt Disney World Resort can catch an exclusive preview of scenes from the movie.

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For a limited time, a sneak peek of “Tomorrowland” will be presented with special in-theater effects at the Imagination Pavilion theater at Epcot and the Tomorrowland Theater at Disneyland park.

Directed by Oscar® winner Brad Bird and starring Academy Award® winner George Clooney, “Tomorrowland” tells the story of a jaded scientist and an optimistic teen who embark on a danger-filled mission to unearth the secrets of an enigmatic place somewhere in time and space. “Tomorrowland” features a screenplay by “Lost” writer and co-creator Damon Lindelof and Brad Bird, from a story by Lindelof & Bird & Jeff Jensen.

The Disney Parks-exclusive “Tomorrowland” sneak peek begins in mid-April at Epcot and Disneyland park. With every second that ticks by, the future is running out, so be sure to take advantage of this special opportunity before “Tomorrowland” opens in theaters on May 22, 2015.

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‘Frozen’ Summer Fun LIVE Returns to Disney’s Hollywood Studios June 17 – September 7

posted on March 18th, 2015 by Shawn Slater, Communications Manager, Walt Disney Parks and Resorts Creative Entertainment


It’s shaping up to be the “Coolest Summer Ever” at Walt Disney World Resort, and one of the biggest highlights of the season is sure to be the return of “Frozen” Summer Fun LIVE at Disney’s Hollywood Studios, with favorite characters, unforgettable music, delightful enhancements and immersive experiences.

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This summer-long special event features a full day of “Frozen” fun from park open to park close, including a royal procession, a sing-along celebration, fun photo opportunities, “Frozen” merchandise, specialty food and beverage offerings and a grand finale fireworks spectacular.

  • Frozen Royal Welcome – Twice each day, Anna, Elsa and Kristoff take part in a festive cavalcade throughout Hollywoodland, accompanied by the Royal Arendelle Flag Corps and a flurry of skaters, skiiers and ice cutters – along with lovable snowman, Olaf. Anna leads the procession in a beautiful horse-drawn sleigh, with Elsa gliding by on a stunning, ice palace float. The entire procession pauses twice along the route in tribute to these visitors from Arendelle, as everyone in Hollywoodland is invited to join in singing “Let It Go!”
  • For the First Time in Forever: A “Frozen” Sing-Along Celebration – Just in time for this year’s “Frozen” Summer Fun LIVE event, this popular show moves into the beautiful Hyperion Theater (formerly Superstar Television Theater), located right in the heart of Disney’s Hollywood Studios. The Royal Historians of Arendelle host a fun and comedic retelling of the unique story of their kingdom, filled with delightful, sing-along moments from “Frozen,” plus all-new in-theater effects and special appearances by Anna, Elsa and Kristoff.
  • Olaf’s Summer Cool Down – Several times each day, the Ambassador of Hollywoodland brings Olaf and some of his friends to the Event Stage to have a little fun with everyone “In Summer.” And as temperatures heat up, Olaf happily shares a burst from his personal snow cloud to cool things off.
  • “Coolest Summer Ever” Dance Party – Once the sun goes down, a dance party takes over the area around the Event Stage, with DJ Chill and some of your favorite Disney characters. Using a special event hashtag, you can share song requests and photos over social media, to be featured onscreen during the party.
  • “Frozen” Fireworks – As the night comes to a close, Anna, Elsa, Kristoff and Olaf come together at the Event Stage for a grand finale to the day’s festivities, kicking off an awe-inspiring fireworks display set to the glorious music of “Frozen” and, of course, a flurry of snow!

“Frozen” Summer Fun LIVE starts June 17 and continues daily through September 7 at Disney’s Hollywood Studios. Who’s going?

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