The immortal Shakespeare once said “all the world’s a stage” and I can think of no man that embraced that sentiment more than Walt Disney. The visionary that created the first animated cartoon with sound was also known to commonly refer to his beloved amusement park, Disneyland, as a show. Recently I visited Disneyland for the first time and having seen what an important role live performances have throughout the park, I can’t help but think the description is an incredibly accurate one.
On May 24, Disneyland highlighted its love of live performances in a very special way: with the world premiere of the new live show Mickey and the Magical Map. The show also marked the grand reopening of the Fantasyland Theatre and being in the audience for that performance was a once-in-a-lifetime experience.
I attended the premiere performance with my seven-year-old and three-year-old boys and once of the first things I noticed is how quickly Zackary and Benjamin became captivated by the show. And with good reason; I was soon caught up in the story myself! The performance follows the adventures of everyone’s favourite mouse as he sets out on a magical quest to become a mapmaker. But when a mischievous unpainted dot tries to thwart his painting attempts, Mickey Mouse finds himself swept away on a wild and magical ride to faraway places!
One of the aspects of this show that I especially loved was the combination of live characters, animation and special effects. It made the entire performance engaging on a variety of levels so that children and adults were equally entertained. My preschooler, for example, loved actually seeing Mickey Mouse out on the stage dancing and singing. School-aged Zackary loved the action-packed animation and special effects. And I couldn’t get enough of the live performances of both classic Disney songs and some music that was new to me.
The performance was approximately thirty minutes long and kept my entire family entertained from beginning to end, not to mention everyone else in the audience! And with a thrilling finale that, to me, personifies everything that is Disney, it was a show that I could happily see again and again. Mickey and the Magical Map is showing now in Disneyland’s Fantasyland Theatre, so make sure that you stop by the theatre on your next visit to Disneyland to see the show for yourself. With music, magic and, of course, Mickey, it’s a performance you won’t want to miss!