Mickey's Soundsational Parade steps off at Disneyland
By Robert NilesDisneyland's new parade for 2011 is Mickey's Soundasational Parade, which I got the chance to watch from a media review platform during last week's "Summer Soundsational" media event at the Disneyland Resort.
Published: June 5, 2011 at 10:16 AM
Senior show director John Addis took to the street to introduce the parade to the assembled photographers and videographers, only to have this happen behind him:
Okay, it seems everyone's doing flash mobs these days. But that's because they're fun. I love going back and watch the video to see if I can guess who's part of the mob, and who's a "normal" guest, when I look at different parts of the crowd. Given how long the crowd was waiting there, at the top of Main Street, I suspect that the flash mob members had to spend at least an hour sitting around, pretending to be guests, in order to be in place for the dance.
I should have warned you, though, the Soundsational theme song's become a total earworm for me - it's still playing in my head, three days later. It's almost as persistent as the Wonderful World of Color Remix was for me last year. (Oh, great, now that's in my brain again, too.)
The parade features eight units, each with characters and a song from a Disney franchise - the Mickey Mouse Club, Aladdin, The Little Mermaid, The Three Caballeros, Tangled (with many of the rest of the Disney Princesses), The Lion King, The Princess and the Frog, Peter Pan (who's been relegated to a secondary, ground-level character so that Tinkerbell can take the lead role, riding up top on the float), and Mary Poppins.
Here are the first five units in the parade:
It's funny what you miss the first time you watch a parade. I noted the Lady Gaga influence on the street dancers in the Three Caballeros unit, but it wasn't until watching it again on video that my daughter and I realized that the dancers were supposed to be pinatas. And that Jose Carioca and Panchito Pistoles are following them...
"Oh, my gosh," my daughter exclaimed. "They're supposed to be beating the women? Who's in the Jose suit, then, Chris Brown?"
Other details are more welcomed. I love that Mickey's given something to do - wailing away on his drum set instead of robotically waving to the crowd. Mickey's supposed to be a mischievous mouse, and I love when Disney moves toward embracing that aspect of his character, instead of reducing him to a corporate symbol. Genie, from Aladdin, has swiped Jafar's staff. And Goofy gets to bang away on a not-so-hidden-Mickey drum and gong set.
And the song remains a fun, upbeat engaging tune that keeps the energy flowing. Dancers engage the crowd up-close at street level while the major characters ride high enough that even the kids in the back can see them.
If you'd like to see the second part of the parade, with the Lion King, Peter Pan and Mary Poppins units, that's up now on our Facebook page. Disneyland's running the Soundsational parade twice a day this summer, at 4 and 6:30 pm.
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