Stopped by the Magic Kingdom today for the final day of “Tiana’s Showboat Jublilee” peformances, and caught the next-to-last jubilee.
The show has clearly struck a chord with guests; many were obviously return visitors as they had their viewing route planned ahead of time, were singing along with the songs, etc.
Of course, there were plenty of cast members in attendance, as they usually turn out to support their colleagues on opening and closing days. But these cast members seemed to be there more the fun than any sense of obligation. Three working cast members were performing an impromptu jazz-square routine to “Gonna Take You There” as the boat pulled out. (As High School Musical’s Ryan would say: “Everyone loves a good jazz square.”)
The “Jubilee” cast were also workin’ it — but I never saw a performance in which they weren’t giving their all.
I’ve stayed out of the which-is-better debate on the Disneyland (live singing) vs. Disney World (prerecorded music) versions of the show, because I like them both. But I will say that one advantage to employing character performers, as opposed to singers, is that they can MOVE. Sunday afternoon, Tiana and Prince Naveen were gettin’ down — and looked like they were having a ball.
So was the crowd. Walt Disney World survey takers have told me the show gets uniform positive reaction, so who knows? Maybe it will be brought back at some point — DVD release?
In the meantime, a cast member told me this weekend she had heard that the show was going to Disneyland Paris, and Disney World’s costumes would be sent over.
But another cast member told me she had heard that most of the current cast were young adults on Disney’s College Program who were returning to school, and rumor had it when they trained new performers, the show would be brought back.
Regardless, here’s a mighty shout-out to the talented folks who brought us “Tiana’s Showboat Jubilee.” See y’all down the bayou.
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