As Jennifer showed you earlier today, today is the big day – the global celebration of the 50th anniversary of “it’s a small world” at Disney Parks. As part of this celebration, we’ve been sharing wonderful renditions of the attraction’s unforgettable song from around the world, and today I’m excited to share one from right here at the Disneyland Resort. My fellow cast members shared this wonderful video with us, and asked me to share it with our Disney Parks Blog readers.
They did a great job, didn’t they? Want to join in? Record your own version at SmallWorld50.com!
Earlier today, Disney theme parks around the world joined in celebration of the 50th anniversary of the “it’s a small world” attraction, part of which was featured live on “Good Morning America.”
The broadcast began with a chorus of kids singing live in Times Square, cast members and children singing in front of Cinderella Castle at Magic Kingdom Park at Walt Disney World Resort, a children’s chorus and dancing dragons at Hong Kong Disneyland, cast members at Tokyo Disneyland and Disneyland Park (Paris), and ended with Disney cast members singing in front of the first “it’s a small world” attraction at Disneyland Park, punctuated with a finale of fireworks.
Check out the video below to see the celebration for yourself.
Happy anniversary to “it’s a small world“! In honor of today’s festivities, check out the graphic below, in which some of your park favorites have received a “small world” makeover of their own. Which character sports the best “it’s a small world” look? Tell us in the “Comments” section below!
Today our celebration of the “it’s a small world” attraction continues with a new downloadable wallpaper from Disney artist Jason “Tiki” Tackett. The graphic was inspired by the original “it’s a small world” attraction at Disneyland park. The sign that’s featured in the middle was added during the attraction’s 25th anniversary celebration.
I can now say I have the #1 highlight of my Disney career: interviewing Disney Legend Richard Sherman. What an amazing day! I met him at the Walt Disney Archives in Burbank, Calif., where he sat at Walt Disney’s piano and played “it’s a small world,” the iconic song he wrote and composed with his late brother, Robert. He’s very proud of the song’s meaning and very serious about its impact on the world. He talks more about it in the video below. As you would imagine, he was a pure delight. He was kind and funny, and after the interview he played more of his classics for the room. I hope this video captures that unforgettable day. Enjoy!
Join in the 50th anniversary celebration of “it’s a small world” at SmallWorld50.com.
We have an exciting day planned Thursday to celebrate the 50th anniversary of Disney’s “it’s a small world” attraction, including online and in-park sing-alongs, musical performances and even a special Google Hangout with Disney Legend Richard Sherman.
We’re kicking off the global celebration early on Thursday with a live sing-along with ABC-TV’s “Good Morning America” in Times Square in New York City. If you’re in the area, be sure to check it out. In addition to Times Square, GMA will feature choirs singing live at the Disneyland Resort and Walt Disney World Resort, plus a choir at the Unisphere in New York at the original location of the 1964 World’s Fair, where “it’s a small world” debuted.
During the day, you’re also invited to join guests and cast members at Disney Parks around the globe for a historic “it’s a small world” sing-along at our global online hub, SmallWorld50.com. And as Erin shared last week, you can also join us for our Google Hangout event with Disney Legend Richard Sherman, live at 1 p.m. PDT from Disneyland park. The event can be seen live here and in the “Gallery” section of SmallWorld50.com.
Throughout the day, guests at Disney Parks will be participating in the celebration at all five resorts around the world. Here are the details for each park:
- At the Walt Disney World Resort, hundreds of Magic Kingdom Park guests are joining in the song during a special “pre-parade” before the “Disney Festival of Fantasy Parade.”
Throughout the day, in-park performers – the Dapper Dans, Coke Corner Pianist, Notorious Banjo Brothers, Royal Majesty Maker Musicians and Main Street Philharmonic – are scheduled to include “it’s a small world” in their appearances.
- At the Disneyland Resort, songwriter Richard Sherman is scheduled to appear in a sing-along cavalcade down Main Street, U.S.A., conducting hundreds of Disneyland guests in their “it’s a small world” sing-along.
- At Hong Kong Disneyland, cast members and students from Hong Kong Children’s Choir are singing “it’s a small world” in Cantonese.
- At Tokyo Disneyland, cast members and guests are gathering to sing in Japanese at Tokyo Disneyland.
- At Disneyland Paris, a “blue carpet” event featuring international cast members is planned for on Main Street, U.S.A., with students from the European International School, singing a multi-language version of the iconic anthem in front of “it’s a small world.”
Since launching our global online hub SmallWorld50.com, thousands of you have participated in the historic celebration of the classic Disney Parks attraction and recorded and shared online video of yourself singing “it’s a small world.”
We’ve enjoyed watching (and hearing) each submitted sing-along on SmallWorld50.com but a few of your renditions of “it’s a small world” have stood out to us. Here’s a look at some of our favorites.
Now, it’s your turn. Go share your online video at SmallWorld50.com and be sure to check the Disney Parks Blog early on April 10 to learn more about our celebration of the 50th anniversary of “it’s a small world.”
As we learned yesterday, “it’s a small world” has journeyed from California to New York and back again, and now some of its iconic dolls are making the voyage once again. In celebration of the 50th anniversary of the attraction’s opening at the 1964-65 New York World’s Fair, these dolls will appear on ABC’s Good Morning America, where they will be featured as part of the show’s coverage of our global sing-along event. In the video below, we see how the dolls are cared for here at Disneyland park and how they were prepared for their trip.
And don’t forget – you’ve still got time to join the celebration at SmallWorld50.com!
Disney Parks has kicked off a global celebration for the 50th anniversary of the opening of “it’s a small world” at the 1964 New York World’s Fair. Have you joined the celebration yet? Just go to SmallWorld50.com to record your sing-along video and create your own doll to benefit UNICEF!
In preparing for this celebration, I had the opportunity to take a behind-the-scenes tour of “it’s a small world” here at Disneyland park – during which I discovered something pretty incredible. Walking behind the large set pieces, I saw these odd little stickers:
Looking very closely, I was able to make out the date “Jan 5 1964.” Also noting that this flameproofing was done here in California led me to the conclusion that this sticker was applied after the set pieces were created and before they were shipped to New York to be assembled for their debut just months later at the 1964 New York World’s Fair.
Along with these fireproofing stickers, I found lots of smaller blue stickers labeled “GLOBAL VAN LINES.” Some of you may remember that, in addition to hosting a locker facility on Main Street, U.S.A., Global Van Lines also operated many years ago from their global headquarters adjacent to Disneyland park – in fact, it was located right here where I am sitting, which is now Team Disney Anaheim (the administrative building in which many Disneyland Resort offices are housed).
Here’s the mystery: were these stickers applied for the shipping from California to New York or vice-versa? Even my friends at the Walt Disney Archives were not sure. (Feel free to discuss your theories in the comments!)
Another discovery that fascinated me were the letter/number designations painted on the back of every single set piece. I learned that these labels aided in the assembly of the large, elaborate set pieces both in New York and at the attraction’s permanent home here in Anaheim in 1966. It was also pointed out to me that some of the larger pieces were attached by hinges, making them easier to pack, ship and reassemble. Stepping back, I realized that “it’s a small world” is one huge jigsaw puzzle!
Did you ever wonder how those charming little outfits are created for the dolls in our “it’s a small world” attraction? Here at Walt Disney World Resort, costumes are produced in our Creative Costuming department at Disney’s Hollywood Studios. Would you believe that the costumes that appear in the attraction today are careful recreations of the designs worn nearly 50 years ago in the original attraction?
Check out the video below for more behind-the-scenes facts.