Tuesday, October 5, 2010

Team Post: Favorite Walt Disney World Stage Show

Amy: This is a hard one. I love live performance. The shows coming to mind are Nemo, Beauty and the Beast, Hunchback (extinct), and Festival of the Lion King. Also, would Hoop De Doo or luau fall into this category? Ooh, and for action, Indiana Jones is always fun. The show in the Golden Horseshoe during the Halloween Party is unique. Off Kilter rules! Ok, the question was “what is your favorite stage show?” so…

My favorite stage show at Walt Disney World is Festival of the Lion King. It’s one I always want to see and always recommend. This show is fascinating and hard to describe quickly. It features tremendous singers, dancers, gymnasts, acrobats, characters, parade floats, crowd participation, and a fire dancer! Do not miss this show!

Festival of the Lion King is in Camp Minnie Mickey at Disney’s Animal Kingdom Park. Check the times guide when you arrive at the park for that day’s schedule. The theatre is large and seats about 1000 people. Arrive early on busy park days to make sure you’ll get a seat. The theatre has a flat floor so wheelchairs are easily accommodated. Seating for everyone else is stadium-style bleachers. We always linger a bit after the show. Most everyone is going to leave Camp Minnie Mickey after the Festival is over, so we let the crowd disperse a bit before heading back over the bridge. If you are traveling with autograph seekers, Camp Minnie Mickey also includes character greeting areas.

Ridge:  My favorite show is a toss-up between Finding Nemo and the Festival of the Lion King. There was a time when I would not have sat still through a show to save my life, but now that I am older, there are lots of things I enjoy about the shows. In Nemo, not only are you in a large air-conditioned theatre (perfect for the hot days) but also one filled with a combination of lights, performers, interesting puppets and music. The show is well performed and you put your focus on the puppets that are larger than life and have a full range of facial expression.  You forget that there is a person standing there holding it. With Festival of the Lion King, you get colors, acrobatics, live music, singing and just overall good times. This show has so much going on even those with a short attention span would have a great time. You sit around the stage area, and the various stage elements move in and out of place. The show is across between a Broadway performance and Cirque du Soleil. It's wonderfully staged and worth seeing next time you are in the Animal Kingdom.

DisneyDad: The best current stage production at WDW is the Finding Nemo – The Musical at Disney’s Animal Kingdom in the DinoLand U.S.A area. With its bright colors and visuals, it brings you into the story of Nemo from the Disney-Pixar move “Finding Nemo”. The puppeteers are the actors portraying characters from the movie. It does not take long for the actor and their puppet becomes one and you are watching the puppet and not the actor.

For sheer energy, the Festival of the Lion King, also at Disney’s Animal Kingdom in the Camp Minnie-Mickey area, cannot be beat. It is part musical, part Circus, and part Cirque du Soleil. The acrobats have always appeared to be top notch and the vocalists who are the story tellers are strong. It is a high energy romp with the audience getting involved in parts of the show.

Both shows tell the story from the movie they are based upon in a 30 minute production. While it helps, you don’t have to ever have seen either movie to enjoy both of these Broadway-style productions.

What is your favorite stage production at Walt Disney World?  Past or present.


  1. I think my favorite is Nemo, although I really like The Festival of the Lion King too!

  2. Lion king! That's all I need to say. Love it!

  3. I agree -- lion king and finding nemo are the best, bar none. I personally would like to see disney continue the trend of bring broadway quality productions. also, I would love to see disney broadway productions (lion king/mary poppins/little mermaid) find a home somewhere such as downtown disney

  4. Ashley, I love the idea of Mary Poppins at DTD!!! Mostly because I am a huge fan of the movie and the touring production isn't coming anywhere near where I live. I can't be the only one.


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