The 12-minute show features a greatest-hits medley of original songs written for the park's attractions, starting with the Sherman Brothers' "One Little Spark" from Journey Into Imagination, interspersed with audio clips of Walt Disney introducing his Experimental Prototype Community of Tomorrow concept to television viewers in the mid 1960s.
The show's first act leans heavily on pyrotechnics, as the soundtrack calls on several Epcot themes, such as the Universe of Energy. But it's the theme from the original Soarin' that introduces the first use of the much-anticipated special effects kites, which fly across the lagoon in a spectrum of color.
From then, the show becomes a pryo-driven audio mashup, eliciting cheers from the crowd as people recognize their favorite tunes. There's "Makin' Memories" from the old Imaginations preshow, "Veggie, Veggie, Fruit, Fruit" from the long-gone Food Rocks! animatronic show in The Land pavilion, and "Fun to be Free" from the World of Motion ride.
With "Golden Dream" from The American Adventure, the kites return, this time spewing pyro of their own. I'd guessed that Golden Dream might provide the show's finale, but Disney instead chose to inject a bit of IP into the production, using "A Whole New World" from Aladdin for that role.
Aladdin doesn't have much of a presence in Epcot, but the idea of a "whole new world" certainly resonates for a park that's seeing its front half be rebuilt. So with that, this fond look backward at Epcot's history glances forward toward its emerging future.
It's an appropriate way to end a celebration of this park, for as Walt Disney says in the final audio clip in the show, "Epcot is and always will be in a state of becoming. It will never cease to be a living blueprint of the future." (The replay of the premiere show begins at the 10:40 mark.)
Epcot Forever is not the next installation of IllumiNations, nor is it meant to be. This is a moment of fan service, something to tie over Epcot's most loyal devotees as Disney fixes up the front of the park to welcome what it hopes will be an influx of guests to see the new Ratatouille ride and Epcot Forever's replacement, HarmoniUS, when they open next year.
As that welcome moment of fan service, Epcot Forever delivers.Tweet
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