Good friend of this site and Cast Member Paul Chadkin had an opportunity to check out a preview of the brand new Disney Junior - Live on Stage attraction that is set to open publically on Friday. Paul wrote up this great review of what he saw and we thank Paul for taking the time to share his thoughts.
Two weeks ago, Disney Channel unveiled Disney Junior, the rebranded programing block previously known as Playhouse Disney. As part of the rebranding, Playhouse Disney - Live on Stage! at Disney’s Hollywood Studios closed for updating in late January. The show will reopen this Friday with a few changes and a new name, Disney Junior - Live on Stage! With the new name, the theater also received a new marquee and the nearby character greeting got new matching backdrops.
As Playhouse Disney, the stage show featured four TV series, Mickey Mouse Clubhouse, Handy Manny, The Little Einsteins and My Friends Tigger and Pooh. The Disney Junior makeover removes the My Friends Tigger and Pooh segment and replaces it with Jake and the Never Land Pirates, a new series that launched with Disney Junior on February 14, 2011. The series stars Jake and his pirate crew, Issy, Cubby and Skully the parrot. In each episode Jake and his crew must face Captain Hook and his first mate Mr. Smee, who are constantly up to no good. The show also features two singing pirates on Hooks crew, Bones and Sharky.
The format and plot of Disney Junior- Live on Stage! are the same as the previous Playhouse Disney version. In both shows Mickey and friends are planing a surprise birthday party for Minnie and looking to stories from the other TV shows for help. The stories of Handy Manny and the Little Einsteins are unchanged from the previous version. The new Jake and the Never Land Pirates segment revolves around Jake and his crew finding and retrieving their Team Treasure Chest from the clutches of Captain Hook and Mr. Smee. After successfully frightening off Hook by acting like a bunch tick-tocking crocodiles and getting their treasure back, hundreds of “gold doubloons” made from yellow paper fall from the sky onto the audience. On the TV show, each time the audience helps Jake and his friends solve a “pirate problem” they get gold doubloons, which they count at the end of the episode and place in their Team Treasure Chest. The segment is just like a shortened version of an episode and also features four songs from the TV series. Disney Junior- Live on Stage! is great for families with younger kids and the new segment with Jake and the Never Land Pirates helps keep the show current.
Thanks again to Paul for the write up and be sure to follow Paul's photo updates on his D-Report feature.