Festival of Un-Fantasy at the Magic Kingdom

Festival of Fantasy finale balloon float on a better day.
Festival of Fantasy finale balloon float on a better day.

This last Sunday at the Magic Kingdom guests were treated to a special version of the Festival of Fantasy parade. Not only was the music not synchronized with the performances, Maleficent (the steampunk dragon) had her head stuck in one position (meaning no fire effects), Maleficent also got stuck on the parade route right before exiting Town Square. To top if all off, the Mickey and Minnie finale balloon deflated somewhere in Frontierland and the Mickey and Minnie characters had to finish the parade with the balloon draped awkwardly over one side of the float.

The balloon float was part of the unit that was brought over from Tokyo Disneyland. The fans and batteries had to be upgraded to survive the extra long parade route of the Magic Kingdom and have been working marvelously. But that doesn’t explain why the balloon would collapse in Frontierland.

The sound being un-synchronized is also odd. Disney’s parades operate on a zone system when a float moves into a zone, it triggers a new piece of music to play. It’s quite a bit more complicated than that, but it’s also usually adjustable on the fly by sound engineers who are following the parade or located in the master control booth for the park. Not sure what was going on here.

The good news is cast members put on a great show despite all the problems. Sometimes when things go wrong, you do the best you can do to give the guests a good show and push on through.

Thanks to Scott Dadourian for sharing this video with use. (Skip to 9:45 to see the broken Maleficent unit and the finale floats.)

The reality is not every show will go off without a hitch. Ever seen the parade during a rain shower? It’s like the Benny Hill song is playing as the soundtrack. It’s just odd to have so many happen in the same parade. I hope those guests returned to see the parade as it was meant to be.

Also, notice the new red vests on the guest control cast members along the parade route. Apparently, that’s an import from Disneyland that started this weekend. They definitely stand out.

Um, Scott, one request, please tilt that camera 90 degrees so it’s horizontal. Watching a tiny sliver of the parade on vertical axis is majorly annoying. Sincerely, everyone.

Digg This
Reddit This
Stumble Now!
Buzz This
Vote on DZone
Share on Facebook
Bookmark this on Delicious
Kick It on DotNetKicks.com
Shout it
Share on LinkedIn
Bookmark this on Technorati
Post on Twitter
Google Buzz (aka. Google Reader)

5 thoughts on “Festival of Un-Fantasy at the Magic Kingdom

  1. Penny

    Ooops! Bit of a nightmare scenario for the performers I imagine but they did a great job of making the best of it. HUGE props to Minnie though, she was really going out on a limb (literally) to wave and interact with the crowd on her side of the parade route, despite the balloon blocking most of her view.

  2. monorailred

    That really was horrid. I watched from 9:30 to the end. That appears to be a dreadfully dull parade, but I’m willing to assume that the mechanical and other problems are to blame.

  3. Casty

    I have it on good authority that management called for an emergency rehearsal of the parade THAT night at 3:00am to work out the problems. they take errors like this VERY seriously!

  4. Noah

    The video seems to be revoked by the user is there any other video of this I really want to see it.

Comments are closed.