Once Upon a Dream Parade in concepts

Saturday, 24th February 2007 at 22:53

With 35 days, 17 hours and 7 minutes until the first official performance of Disney's Once Upon a Dream Parade, there are still plenty of secrets and unknowns about this long-awaited new parade. Whilst we've seen costumes, peeked at construction and heard some of the music recently, seven of the eight floats have remained blurry silhouettes from a casting advertisement... until now!,

Here they are – the full series of eight colour concept arts for the brand new Disneyland Park parade, officially released at the shareholders’ AGM (of course!) and captured by Mouetto on Disney Central Plaza forum (naturellement!).

Each of the concepts is accompanied by a quick summary from our guide page, and then beneath that any additional notes, details or corrections we can spot after seeing the full-colour artworks.

Float 1: Dreams of Imagination

“Mickey and Minnie hover high in the sky in a golden hot air balloon! They’ve dropped anchor on a most dreamy location, the purple curve of a smiling moon, resting on a storybook. Donald showers the moon in sparkling glitter, as Goofy rests on the pile of storybooks and blows bubbles into the clouds!”

The same concept you first saw right here over seven months ago. How time flies, eh?

Float 2: Dreams of Laughter and Fun

“A traditional fairytale hut is featured at the centre of the float, used by Alice in Wonderland first and then Pinocchio at the rear. The Pinocchio section features “marionnette” bungee artists similar to those in ‘Walt Disney’s Parade of Dreams’ at Disneyland in California, bouncing on bungee ropes from supports high above. Around this section of the float, stilt walkers will perform routines with their own puppets.”

The Alice in Wonderland scene features Tweedle Dee/Dum, the Caterpillar and a tree with painted red roses. As the theme shifts to Pinocchio, a number of clocks are featured. Pinocchio appears to be performing his “I’ve Got No Strings” routine, with Gepetto watching. Jiminy Cricket sits atop the bungee rope clock tower.

Float 3: Dreams of Friendship

“Features Toy Story and Winnie the Pooh characters, with a giant storybook in the middle separating the two themes. At the front, Woody joins his Roundup Gang to remind them “you’ve got a friend in me”, whilst at the back Pooh’s birthday party is in full swing, featuring all his best friends from the Hundred Acre Wood at a jolly tea party.”

This float was the hardest to decipher from the silhouette image, with a classic scene from the first Toy Story at the front and a Hundred Acre Wood tea party at the rear. Despite the logo of Toy Story 2 being used, the scene is more reminiscent of the first film, since Buzz has a rocket attached to his wings and the arcade machine of the Little Green Men is featured.

Float 4: Dreams of Fantasy

“This very British float first features Captain Hook’s galley splashing through the waves, before a sea of London rooftops bring Wendy peering out of her window at Peter Pan on the roof above! A whimsically-styled Big Ben towers in the centre of the rooftops, poking through the clouds, with Mary Poppins and her classic “jolly holiday” carousel behind, as a fleet of kites hovers above. A merry band of pirate flag artists will surround the ship at the front of the float.”

The crocodile from Peter Pan can be seen amongst the waves at the front of the float, whilst the Penguin waiters from Mary Poppins are featured in the Jolly Holiday scene.

Float 5: Dreams of Power

“The Disney Villains are out to take command of the parade, on a dark and menacing float filled with viciousness! As the serpent Jafar slithers along at the front, Chernabog towers over the parade route on the desolate summit of Bald Mountain. Bringing up the rear is the slimy sea monster Ursula. The float will be surrounded by menacing souls juggling (false) fire!”

Hades can be seen at the front of the float, whilst the Evil Queen from Snow White hides below Chernabog.

Float 6: Dreams of Adventure

“Serving The Lion King and The Jungle Book, a giant jungle tree towers out of the middle of the float, with Simba on Pride Rock before it and King Louie and Baloo behind. Various animals from both films can be found amongst the branches of the tree, including monkeys and giraffes. Rafiki is clinging to the tree behind Pride Rock, with Timon and Pumbaa joining in the celebrations below. It’s also likely that several of the colourful jungle animals from the Kids Carnival season will join the parade at this point.”

The Jungle Book scene chosen is King Louie’s temple, with Baloo in his coconut hula outfit and King Louie’s throne beneath the tree. Timon also wears his hula costume, and the entire tree is filled with too many animals to count – including The Jungle Book’s Vultures and Kaa the snake.

Float 7: Dreams of Romance (Part 1)

“A tropical garden oasis is the setting for Ariel and Jasmine, with beautiful flowers and an enchanted tree bringing a rainbow of colour to their romantic pursuits. The Dream of Romance section will feature the enchanted garden theme throughout, with each of the Princesses’ shimmering dresses scattered with beautiful gold leaves and several dancing flowers with yellow and green petals surrounding each float.”

The enchanted garden features Ariel at the front in some kind of sea shell grotto, whilst Jasmine swings on a tree with giant roses and Aladdin dances around her.

Float 8: Dreams of Romance (part 2)

“The grand finale to the entire parade, this giant float features a grand total of four princesses! The initial gazebo is an ornate shelter for Beauty and the Beast, whilst the whimsical fairytale bridge is occupied by Snow White and her prince. On the hill before the giant castle stands Cinderella and Prince Charming. Sleeping Beauty is possibly featured behind the castle, as a finale – afterall, the parade is named after one of her songs! The float will also be articulated (split into two free-moving, joined sections), giving an idea of its impressive size.”

Sleeping Beauty is indeed featured just behind the castle, which is a giant, glittering, crystal design. The gazebo of Beauty and her Beast is surrounded by giant red roses.

Finally seeing the full parade in colour concept art is a dream for any fan, and when it finally premieres in just over one month there’ll be even more to see, not just on the floats but all around – characters, dancers, confetti and more. We’re promised a unique parade in the history of Disney Parks, filling all five sense with wonder. Sight and sound are obvious, touch will be from the many Disney characters, more than in any other parade. Unique scents for each float were even confirmed some time ago, leaving just taste to be answered. Characters handing out sweets seems a likely option, already a popular stunt during Halloween events.

Some of the concepts here appear to be quite realistic (for example, the first and second floats), whilst others seem to merely give an artistic impression of the characters and details the floats will include (Dreams of Fantasy in particular), rather than an accurate plan.

To see these concepts made a reality will be the real moment of magic. And, when you spot the first new daytime parade at the park in almost seven years coming towards you along Main Street for the first time, it’ll be better than a dream.

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