Disney California Adventure Park - Retired Entertainment
Below is a partial listing of some of the entertainment Disney California Adventure has offered since its opening in 2001.
Retired Parades and Shows
Minnie's Fly Girls Charter Airline (February 17, 2012 - Present)
This brief show takes place on a small stage in Condor Flats, opposite Soarin' Over California. Minnie's Flight crew takes you on a music journey around the world featuring music from the 40s, 50s, and 60s including a Disney Medley as well as standards from Frank Sinatra and Nat King Cole.
Disney Dance Crew (October 2010 - April 2012)
This show takes place on the Backlot stage and features a number of high energy dancers performing to hip hop inspired mixes.
Pixar Pals (January 2011 - April 2012) --
These brief character shows were put in place due to construction in the park that would not allow for a daily parade to pass through.
Pixar Pals featuring The Incredibles Heroes in Training Squad - Premiered 1/14/11
Disney Channel Rocks (December 2010 - December 2011)
This show takes place on the on the Pacific Palisades Stage on the edge of Paradise Bay. It features a mix of Disney Channel songs performed by a group of dancers and singers.
Drawn to the Magic (?? - 2011)- Takes place on the Hollywood Backlot and features "animators" singing some Disney movie tunes and then the characters appear and are available for autographs.
Magic of Brother Bear (Redwood Creek Challenge Show)(2003 -
Overall I was not that impressed with the show. It is geared toward
young children with an emphasis on audience participation. What
ever happened to the old Disney entertainment that was fun and entertaining
for all without being geared to a specific audience. The show is
a live story telling cast member comes out and talks with the audience.
He interacts with several props on the stage. Eventually Koda shows
up and they talk a bit then Kenya (sp?) shows up and the shows ends
and you are able to take pictures with the characters and around
Disney's Electrical Parade (July 3, 2001 - April 2010)
parade is back and is brighter than ever. It is the classic Main
Street Electrical Parade, renamed and transplaneted to the new park.
There are a few units missing, but overall its still one of the
best parades Disney has done and continues to entertain the masses.
If you have never seen it is a one of a kind experience. Basically
the parade is a bunch of battery powered floats covered in Christmas
lights with a synth. sound track. But that really does not do it
justice. This is a must see event.
Its still a little weird for me to see this familiar parade going
down DCA's performance corridor with a bears head above Elliot,
but I am sure I will get used to it. I am just glad something is
there to entertain people at night. I really hope DCA can get a
night time spectacle of its own someday soon.
High School Musical 3: Senior Year - Right Here! Right Now! (October 2008 - 2010)
Thoughts from 10/31/08 - I caught the High School Musical 3: Senior Year - Right Here! Right Now! show at the Sunshine Plaza and then partially at the Golden State Park. Its pretty much the same concept as the first two shows. The stage rolls out with a group of dancers/singers and they perform a medley of songs from the film and then it rolls on to the second stop, does the same show, then continues on down the parade route and out of the park. They are running it three times daily. The crowd at the Sunshine Plaza was fairly dense at probably ten deep or so and the one out at the Golden State Park was much lighter maybe 3 or 4 deep only. Unlike the HSM2 show they do not have as many opportunities to bring the audience into the show and they do not revisit any of the music from the first two films (that I could tell).
Block Party Bash (May 5, 2005 - January 6, 2008)
This parade/celebration was launched as part of Disneyland's 50th Anniversary celebration. It took place daily along the parade route (performance corridor). Originally it had three stops then it was down to two. The parade would roll out, then stop and perform for several minutes before moving on. It consisted of a Toy Story , a Monsters Inc, and a Bugs Life unit, with guest appearances by the Invredibles. After its run at Calfiornia Adventure the parade was packed up and shipped off to Florida to run at Disney's Hollywood Studios.
High School Musical Pep Rally (early 2007/late 2006 -> July 2007)
This show took place a couple times per day at both the parks entrance and out across from Golden Dreams and featuring about a dozen performers going through many of the songs and dance routinces from the Disney Channel Movie. If was shuttered in July 2007 to make way for a new version based on the second film
Chance to Shine (Outside
Hollywood & Dine and then later in front of the Animation Building)
three women are "extras" in the movie business and they
share some of their stories through song and an improv act right
in front of the Hollywood Drive & Dine. Its a great show for
adults and kids seem to enjoy it too. They interact with the audience
and pull people out to help them during the act.
Goofy's Beach Blanket Bash (July
2001 - 2003)
This show out on the backlot stage is a decent Disney Character
show. The kids will love it and there are enough jokes if you listen
to keep the adults entertained too.
Ahwahnee Camp Circle (Redwood Creek
Challenge Trail)(2001 - 2003)
At the Camp Circle they have storytelling and activities for younger
children. I have yet to attend any of these (have not gone to the
park with a young child yet). If anyone has some info on this drop
me a line.
Eureka Parade (February 2001 - September 2002)
This parade usually occurs twice daily. It starts near the entrance
plaza and winds it way through the park and ends up in Paradise
Pier. This is truly an unique Disney parade. The music is much more
"hip hop" and louder. The parade features several floats
each depicting a different region of California. The parade stops
several times along its route to put on a short show. There is also
a VIP viewing option available, for around $40 you get to site above
the Pacific Warf Cafe and sip wine and eat while watching the parade.
Usually there is not a crowd to watch the parade, if there is a
second parade the day you are there go to that one, there is usually no one around...
Another cool place to view the parade is from the Sun Wheel. It
gives you a great view of the parade route, but timing it can be
tricky. Overall we rate this parade pretty good. Its interesting
and the music is "catchy". Its not the Lion King Parade,
but it blows away the Parade of the Stars....
Overall I thought this parade was pretty good. The floats were nothing
to write home about, but the performers really made the parade.
They have everything from standard dancers, to roller bladers, to
drummers suspended on cables, to puppets that look like they should
be in the Tapestry of Nations at EPCOT. We agree that the floats
look like they can pass for Rose parade floats, but without the
flowers and on a smaller scale. We also liked how the parade stopped
for a couple performances along the route. The music for Eureka
is an interesting mix that worked real well. It seemed to energize
the crowd for the most part. My only complaints on this first experience
with the parade has nothing to do with the parade, its the route.
I think it can lead to some really bad traffic problems in the main
plaza. The other thing I did not like was what the route looked
like. Just lined with those ugly light/speaker poles for the most
part. (Check out our picture update for a shot of what I mean).
I wish they could have hidden them somehow. I know this is a minor
problem for most, but remember this is a "geek page"...
Mouse (Bountiful Valley Farm)(2002)
This character show features one person playing a farmer, Chip,
Dale, and Mickey. Its a great show for young kids and all the ones
in attendence seemed to enjoy it quite a bit. As the show ends it
turns into a standard character photo/autograph session. The actress
playing the farmer was excellent. She sure had her hands full the
show we went to. She - acts as the narator, an entertainer (sings
throughout), interacts with the characters, and does some crowd
control moving kids around and trying to keep them seated. My only
complaint with this show is that the characters do not have any
lines. I think its annoying and they should be given a few lines.
If you have yound kids at the park, this is probably a must see.
I think they will enjoy it.
the Power of Blast!(November 2001 -September 2, 2002)
is a great show in the Hyperion theater. It does a few numbers from
the Broadway (and touring) production. The group is a combination
of a marching band, drill team, and broadway musical. They are hard
to describe, but very entertaining and worth checking out if they
are playing when your in the park.
LuminAria (Seasonal: Nov. 2001
- January 2002)
show on the lagoon in Paradise Pier each night at closing during
the holiday season. The first scheduled show is Nov. 9th and the
geek will be there to check it out. I have posted extended and revised
comments in several geekspeak columns if your interested. Basically
my advice on this show is if you are in the park go see it (nothing
else is usually open so its your only choice). It is not that bad,
but its not that good either. The best views are looking toward
Screamin' and the Sun Wheel. This is where the finale effect works
the best. For a great view close to showtime the area in front of
the Screamin' Queue usually has standing space. The show can be
thought of as an Illuminations type show, but not nearly as impressive.
The biggest problem I think with the show is the limited space.
The Bay (lagoon) is relatively small for a large firework show,
so it relies a lot on lights and low level effects that just are
not that interesting after a while.
Camera, Chaos! (Feb. 2001 - May 2001)
This disjointed little show takes place on the Hollywood backlot.
It is basically a stunt show with a very loose plot. We enjoyed
the stunts and for the most part the show. We wished some of the
sequences were shorter, they seemed to drag on. Also the storyline
was annoying, but we do not know of anything better. This show ended
its short run in early May.
Steps In Time (Feb 2001- Oct 2001)
If you have been reading around the internet you have probably already
heard about this show... if not... this is the stage show that takes
place in the Hyperion Theater at the end of Hollywood Blvd. Most people,
myself included, find the show very poorly done and hard to sit through
(I have forced myself to do it twice so far only, mostly because I
wanted to compare the balcony to the main level). The cast members
try their hardest, but the storyline is terrible and the songs are
pretty annoying too. They have taken Disney classics and remixed them...
the basic storyline is: older brother is having problems with younger
brother -> older brother learns lesson -> everybody compromises
and goes home happy. If you want to stay more involved with the show
sit on the main level, do not go up to the balcony. You feel much
more removed and its even harder to sit through the show up there,
but viewing the video clips was a little better from up there.
Retired Live Groups
have been several groups that have gone through the park. These
include a cappella groups like Groove 66 and Jondo, improv groups,
bands, and other characters. We highly recommend giving a listen
or stopping to observe one of these. These groups can really add
to your DCA experience.
The Miner 49er's - This group performs several times a day near GRR.
City Allstars (Hollywood Blvd., Golden Gateway, Sunshine Plaza)
Throughout the late afternoon and evening you will see a traveling
band going around the park. They have three "concert"
stops and do the route a few times. These groups are ok... they
are fun to stop and listen too, but if you miss them you will not
be missing much.These performances used to be called Road Trip from
2001 - 2004.
Flight featuring "Jondo" (Condor Flats) (May 01?? ->
I really enjoyed this group.... they were really great to listen to...
This was an a cappella group that performed across from Soarin' Over
California. They did a wide variety of songs.
Pacific Wharf Stage
selected days there are bands performing on the small stage in the
middle of the Pacific Wharf dining area. This really makes sense
and it really adds to the area. Before you could walk through the
area and there would be a couple small groups of people eating.
With the stage active peoplee were sitting and enjoying the entertianment
and in the process probably ended up eating and drinking more than
they had planned. The evening we were at the park there was a Jazz
band performing on the stage.
Groups (near Paradise Bay, across from Golden Dreams)
In the amphitheater that looks out on the Bay there are several
groups that perform through out the day. We have seen a bicycling
group and a limbo group out there on recent trips. So far I have
not seen a posted schedule for this area, so as you are wondering
around the park, if you see people gathered there stop by
and see what's happening.
Retired Character Encounters
Minnie "Earhart" (Condor
This character apperance takes place near Soarin' Over California
several times a day. The premise is Minnie is just returning from
a trip around the world to all four Disney resorts(Orlando, Paris,
Tokyo, and Anaheim). A couple CMs come out and "warm up"
the crowd. There is some guest interaction, then Minnie comes out.
It works pretty good and I like the concept. I only have three issues
with the show. One is Minnie does not speak. The CMs ask her questions
and she has to mime the answers, this just seems bad. Secondly Minnie's
arrivial is built up for several minutes and then she is wheeled
in from backstage on a luggage cart. Why can't she be wheeled through
Condor Flats more, or come in on something better looking than a
luggage cart. My third concern is the traffic jam this show causes
in the area. Its a narrow walkway leading to GRR but with Minnie
there drawing a crowd its even tighter.
n Dale (Redwood Creek)
This is one of the best character greeting/interactions I have
found. I do not know if it was just dumb luck or what, but we went
to the 5:30pm greeting and it ended up being Chip and Dale roaming
around the Redwood Creek Challenge Trail interacting with guests.
They were not surrounded by "tourists" and it was great
to sit back and watch them "goof around". Of course they
would do pictures and autographs if asked too. I still think a better
memory is one of a character "playing" with you, not your
parents pushing you in front of some other kid to get your picture
with one, or waiting in a long line for your 30 seconds with one.
Cruella De Vil (Hollywood Backlot)
This was an ok mini show. The idea is Cruella is filming her next
movie and you get to watch her do a scene and then autographs and
photos. All three actors in this show were really good (great facial
expressions). Also a hand full of kids get to be in the scene and
they really seemed to enjoy it. Overall I think this is something
that is worth seeing, but I would not make an extra effort to be
Mulan's Chinese New Year Cavalccade(Golden
This mini-parade using left over outfits and what
seems set pieces marches out to the front of Golden Dreams several
times a day. It features a great oportunity to get pictures with
Mulan and Mushu. There are probably close to a dozen CMs dressed
up that interact with Guests all around the area.
Vine (near GRR)(2001 - 2002)
This is a CM up on stinks dressed like a plant(tree). The person
will "blend" in with the surrounding then start to move
around. Its weird, but entertaining. In this picture you can see
the character in front of a GRR sign. There are also some other
organic characters that hang around the farm/wharf area.
Three Bags Full (Bay Area)(2001 - 2002)
Speaking of weird... they remind me of the carpet from Aladdin.
Basically they are CMs in large bags. We have seen them a couple
times in the grass area across from the Golden Dreams theater. I
have not seen them in the park for several years. No good pictures
The Ugly Bug Ball (Bountiful
Valley Farm)(2002 - 2006)
This little show is out on the stage in the Farm area. The show
itself is 15-20 minutes in length and really geared toward the younger