WATCH: Disney Cruise Line’s New ‘Frozen’ Musical Coming to the Disney Wonder
Photo courtesy of Disney Cruise Line
When the redesigned Disney Wonder from Disney Cruise Line relaunches on Nov. 10, 2017, it will have a brand new “Frozen, A Musical Spectacular” show aboard for the first time.
Looking at both the preview video released by the cruise line, hosted at my Popular Cruising YouTube channel and embedded below, and Gene Sloan’s USA Today video report, we can see that the production show will be modified from the live one recently unveiled at Disney California Adventure.
After all, Kelly Benton, Producer, “Frozen, A Musical Spectacular” for Disney Cruise Line said, “… you’re going to see Frozen like you have never seen it before.” Besides, bringing to life the hit animated film as a live show, that I’ve seen in person at the shoreside theme park, will have to differ quite a bit from what can be implemented at sea, which presents unique creative opportunities.
For instance, the Disney California Adventure show is housed in the massive Hyperion Theater which dwarfs the still ample Walt Disney Theater on the Disney Wonder. That means things need to scale down just a bit. The DCA performance clocks in at an hour, so whether or not the cruise version will be as long is still to be seen, although abbreviations are mentioned.
Spatially, sets won’t be able to be quite as grand, like the oversized doors that make the performers appear more like children in the first act on land. Onboard, it appears that more puppets will be used instead to convey the younger characters: Elsa, Anna, Olaf and even Kristoff and Sven. At DCA, a live actor carries a toy Sven reindeer, but the youthful equivalents will both be puppet performances on the ship.
One area where the puppets seem to make for an improved effect will be the young girls sliding down a white sheet to convey the ice slopes that were not manifested beyond video projections at DCA. This allows for only one performer to portray each main character instead of the two employed on land for the different age groups.
Once the characters are grown up, Kevin Eld, Creative Portfolio Executive, Disney Cruise Line, Walt Disney Imagineering, added, “One of the things that I think the guests will really start to enjoy is the relationship between Sven and Olaf. We’re able to kind of focus in on that a little bit more in the stage show. …”
And while it’s likely that certain elements such as a cantilevered stairwell stretching out into the audience or the Sphero-like remote controlled troll rock won’t make it onboard from the shore, certainly other video, fog, costume and stage effects will. Disney has always been a master at making things appear larger than they are, for example, and forced perspective set pieces and larger-than-life performances can bring big concepts like “Frozen” to sea quite effectively.
Of course, to make it all happen, Jim Urry, Vice President, Entertainment for Disney Cruise Line points out how a talented Tony Award-winning costume designer and Broadway-acclaimed directors are helming the production, among so many more.
More by Jason Leppert
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