Several weeks ago, Disney announced the departure of the well-beloved “Aladdin: A Musical Spectacular” from their famous Hyperion Theater in Disney California Adventure Park. Taking the stage next, they said, will be an all-new “Frozen”-inspired musical.
“Our stage production of ‘Frozen’ will stay true to the heart and soul of the film,” said Dana Harrel, portfolio creative entertainment executive of Walt Disney Imagineering. “Anna and Elsa will carry the audience on an emotional journey that includes show-stopping production numbers and a few unique theatrical twists. We can’t wait for everyone to see it!”
Reactions to this announcement were mixed on social media, to say the least.
Adamant “Frozen” lovers rejoiced at the top of their lungs, expressed appropriately through caps-locked comments of excitement. Disney passholder veterans and not-so-avid “Frozen” fans expressed disappointment, holding on to their love of the Aladdin musical that once made a seemingly permanent residence in the Hyperion Theater. After all, the show ran for 12 years before being swiftly escorted off stage by the ice princess.
With Anna and Elsa kicking Jasmine and Aladdin off their own stage next January, one can’t help but make this observation: “Frozen” is undoubtedly taking over the Disney parks.
The blockbuster film has its own lengthy cameo in Disney’s “World of Color: Celebrate! The Wonderful World of Walt Disney” (while other beloved Disney films sport only short appearances), and its own segment in the “Disneyland Forever” fireworks show.
Anna and Elsa make their appearance in the Paint the Night parade in a gigantic, glowing ice castle float. Seriously, their dazzling float outshines the likes of their princess counterparts such as Cinderella and Rapunzel.
The Animation Building – which once housed the Sorcerer’s Workshop, Ursula’s Grotto, and Beast’s Library – is now home to a meet-and-greet with Anna and Elsa. Children are so eager to meet the princesses that this attraction even requires a fastpass to enjoy.
If you aren’t already sick of hearing random children sing “Let it go!” at the top of their lungs, you can now attend “For the First Time in Forever: A Frozen Sing-A-Long” in Disney California Adventure Park. There’s also a “Frozen” storytelling feature at the Royal Theater Fantasy Faire in Disneyland Park.
And late last year, Disney installed a “Frozen Fun” spectacular where you could even play with Olaf in the “snow.”
That is quite the lengthy list.
Earlier this year, the Hornet posted an article asking, “When will it be time to ‘let it go’?” Several months and several more “Frozen” attractions later, it seems the answer may be “never.”
But that’s not necessarily a bad thing.
Some people criticize Disney, accusing them of chasing the money and milking the “Frozen” franchise for all that it has to offer.
Though profit certainly does play into the equation, the truth is that because the people want “Frozen,” “Frozen” is what they continue to get.
Watch Disney’s World of Color and you’ll see all the phone cameras suddenly make their biggest appearance during Elsa’s “Let it Go” cameo. Accompanying the glare of phone screens is the soundtrack of the audience singing right along.
Watch the “Disneyland Forever” Fireworks and the “Paint the Night” Parade and you will notice the same exact thing.
At Anna and Elsa’s meet-and-greet, not only is the gigantic line remarkable, you’ll see kids of all ages leap for joy having their dream of meeting their favorite princesses come true right before their very eyes.
Though the chorus of Idina Menzel’s “Let it Go” has been wearily replayed again and again, one can’t help but crack a smile seeing the excitement in the mini Anna’s and Elsa’s in the audience during the “Frozen Sing-A-Long.” Even parents, who probably get the worst of the ‘Frozen’-fananza at home, look on with contentment as their children happily sing along.
As long as the people – especially the children – continue to demand the chilly fun that is the “Frozen” franchise, Anna and Elsa will be here to stay.