Disneyland looks for magic to happen with its new parade

January 21, 2020, 12:41 PM · Off season? What's an off season? Continuing the rush of new attractions this winter, Disneyland next month will debut its new parade, Magic Happens.

Creative Director David Duffy talks about the show in a new video released today by Disney.

Magic Happens will feature nine all-new floats, featuring animated films Cinderella, Sleeping Beauty, The Sword in the Stone, The Princess and the Frog, Moana, Coco, and Frozen 2, as well as - of course - Mickey Mouse and his friends. The parade also will feature dozens of live performers and characters dancing alongside the floats to the sounds of a new score and theme song, co-written by former American Idol contestant and RuPaul's Drag Race choreographer Todrick Hall, who got his start as a cast member in the Beauty and the Beast - Live on Stage show at Walt Disney World.

"This is a full circle moment for me," Hall said. "I learned how to dance from watching Disney parades, so the fact that I am getting to create the music that these iconic Disney characters are going to be performing to is pretty much the most epic thing that has happened to me in my life."

Disneyland's press release said that "while the music and stories seen in 'Magic Happens' are rooted in iconic Disney lore, the soundtrack and choreography are heavily influenced by today’s pop culture designers, putting a contemporary spin on the classic Disney hits."

Magic Happens opens at Disneyland on February 28.

Disneyland tickets For discount tickets to Disneyland and Disney California Adventure, visit our travel partner's officially authorized Disneyland tickets page.

Replies (7)

January 21, 2020 at 1:38 PM

How many floats did the Soundsational parade have? I hope this isn’t a reduction.

SUPER EXCITED for the Sword in the Stone float. I wish Merlin still picked a guest to pull Excalibur in both Disneyland and Magic Kingdom at WDW.

January 21, 2020 at 1:40 PM

I'm sure people will love this parade, but I didn't enjoy it when they tried to make Minnie cool like Madonna back in the eighties, and I'm sure I'm not going to appreciate their "contemporary spin on the classic Disney hits" today either. Stop trying to make Disney cool, please.

January 21, 2020 at 1:51 PM

Well now we know where the Sword in the Stone disappeared to. :-)

January 21, 2020 at 2:09 PM

I think that Soundsational was 10 units. Here's that parade if you'd like to take a look for old time's sake:

January 21, 2020 at 3:09 PM

Congrats to Todrick and I look forward to seeing what he has to bring to the parade.

January 21, 2020 at 7:24 PM

Kinda off topic, but previous comments inspired me to think:
With all the live action remakes Disney has been doing lately, I'm surprised nobody has tried to do a live action Sword & the Stone. King Arthur movies have missed the mark repeatedly in recent years. A "Disney" version would probably work really well. Bright and magical, with an over-the-top, animal morphing, dragon changing wizard battle.

January 22, 2020 at 7:19 AM

@B Goodwin - I would be surprised if Disney hasn't tossed that idea around, but I just don't see it happening right now. The market for fantasy/adventure fare is currently oversaturated, and Disney's most recent entry in the genre, Maleficent Mistress of Evil was pretty awful and barely broke $100 million in the US (finished a tad below $500 million worldwide compared to $758 million for the original).

I think in the hands of the right creative team, Sword in the Stone could probably work in a live-action format, but it would have a hard time differentiating itself in the marketplace without getting too campy. I don't feel that there's enough awareness of the IP for it to hit the right tone and still appeal to a broad enough audience. I'm finishing up The Witcher on Netflix (certainly not family appropriate but still in a similar genre), and even though it tries at times to straddle the line between Game of Thrones and Monty Python and the Holy Grail, the comedic elements fall pretty flat for me. I think a fanciful, more humorous take on the Arthurian legend would be refreshing, but the GoT and LOTR crowd dominate audiences for Medieval-style fantasy stories theses days. Maybe a Disney+ series could find a niche.

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