Blue Horizons reviews
Theme Park Insider readers offer their ratings and reviews for Blue Horizons, a live show at SeaWorld Orlando.
Written by Joe Lane
With the raging success of Busch Gardens Tampa's KaTonga, it's no surprise that Anheuser-Busch's SeaWorld Orlando is attempting to duplicate the sensation with their latest show Blue Horizons.
Merging Broadway-style elements with a live animal cast is a trick that has been done by other entertainment venues, but Blue Horizons is a unique example. Using Cirque-like acrobatics that have become insanely popular over the past couple years and well-trained dolphins and false whales, SWO has unleashed a show designed to compete with the growing entertainment venues at rival theme parks.
The old Key West design of the Whale and Dolphin Theater has been completely overhauled, replaced by a fanciful set: a blue-painted structure that grows up from the center back of the tank and overhead, angling down towards the sides. Fake waves and large bubbles decorate the facade.
The fairytale story is nothing too remarkable, communicated better in the extensive narration at the beginning of the show than in the show itself: a young girl aspires to swim and fly with the spirits of the sea and the sky. It almost feels like the Blue Horizons plot draws heavily from the Mistify story.
Accompanied by a musical score, trainers perform alongside their aquatic counterparts. The highlights of the show are often the dolphin tricks including the usual fair of midair summersaults. Some of the underwater spirals are fairly impressive as well, requiring concentration on both the part of trainer and animal.
But often, Blue Horizons is best described as... awkward. It's not that the cast and crew haven't practiced well, they have and they do a great job setting up for each portion of the show, but there are quiet periods in the show where the action seems to suddenly cease and the show almost becomes boring.
The traditional dolphin show formula allowed the trainers to fill in dead space with oration, explaining about dolphins and their habits. Here, no one speaks in the show, so at some portions, it feels clumsy.
When the acrobats are doing their performance onstage, however, the action is constant: whether it's the high divers or the trapeze artists.
Blue Horizons is not a bad show, it just suffers from pacing issues. Expect to be entertained, but don't expect to be thinking about it afterwards.
Definitely a spectacle. Even though it's a bit cheesey, I think there's something in it for everyone (dolphins, divers, birds, acrobats etc.). - Ed Newman
Blue Horizon is an awesome show! There are so many great tricks going on, both by the animals and the people, that it is hard to catch them all. Yes, the story line is a little lame, but it really doesn't matter. - Blake Hoskinson
I love this show its awosome really cool really I love the dolphins and the tricks. - Giovanny Cruz
Great show...Bad actors! The cheesey factor in this show is unbelievable but the Dolphin tricks are fabulous! Great show otherwise. Deserves to have the Shamu Stadium. 8/10 - D H
This show is better than Believe in the cheesiness, but it still has plenty of it. The animal trick are great, but the human actors bring in something that just takes away from the experience. Maybe if they tweaked the script a little I'd like it better. - David Garey
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