Disney Cruise Line labels their evening cruise entertainment “Broadway Style Shows”, and it’s not a far off comparison. Disney knows a thing or two about entertainment, from their vast production of movies to their in house productions. We definitely can’t visit Animal Kingdom without frequenting the awesome Festival of the Lion King show. When it comes to the shows onboard a Disney Cruise, there are some that we stood up and cheered for long after the curtains were drawn, but some, however, are much ado about nothing.
► Ranking: #cleandiaper/#stinkydiaper
Disney Cruise Line Broadway Style Shows
Disney Cruise Lines
Walt Disney Theatre
Frozen, A Musical Spectacular
Frozen, A Musical Spectacular is a Broadway Style Show that is a condensed live action retelling of the movie of the same name. This show can only be found on the Disney Wonder Cruise Ship, and runs just about one hour long. It follows the same story of the movie including all the same characters with the same personalities, struggles and triumphs. The actors who portray Olaf and Sven, along will all the puppetry work are phenomenal and steal the show. If you love Frozen, you’ll love this rendition!
You won’t, however, find anything different than the movie. It is nearly word for word, minus a few lines. Guests can, and will sing along – after all, you can’t help yourself. The best part will be seeing how they bring the story to life in this dimension.
Tangled: The Musical
Tangled is the Broadway Style Show that you’ll delight watching when cruising aboard the Disney Magic Cruise Ship. Like Frozen, it too is a retelling of the movie of the same name. It is very similar to the animated film, but in this rendition, Alan Menken and Glenn Slater have scored three new songs that you’ll only find in this live action version. It is exciting to be a part of what can only be witnessed aboard the Disney Cruise ship and hear exclusively as part of this adoring show. Flynn and Rapunzel are engaging and charismatic, and just like the movie, you’ll fall in love with these actors as much as you do their animated counterparts.
Aladdin – A Musical Spectacular
Aladdin, is the live action Broadway Style Show performed on the Disney Fantasy Cruise Ship! Of the three shows, Frozen, Tangled and Aladdin – Aladdin is our clear favorite. No one is as appealing and larger than life than the Genie, and the actor that portrays the Genie in this live action version is to be applauded long after the curtain is drawn. His quips are original, feel unrehearsed, and are current and up to date. The emotion between Genie and Aladdin feels genuine and pulls at your heart strings. Then there is the flying carpet that is nothing short of true ingenuity. If the Genie didn’t steal our hearts, the flying carpet would have. There is so much to love about this production, including the chase and parade scenes that overflowed into the aisles, the scene between Jasmine and Aladdin set to ‘I Can Show You the World’ and the thousand Genies that flood the stage and are almost borderline scary.
Beauty and the Beast
The Broadway Style Show, Beauty and the Beast, will be found aboard the Disney Dream Cruise Ship. Like with Tangled, Alan Menken has scored two new songs for this live action retelling. We haven’t yet cruised on the Dream, so we don’t have any additional details to share, but if it’s anything like the other shows, it’s definitely amazing.
Also exclusive to the Disney Fantasy Cruise Ship is an original Broadway Style Show titled Disney Wishes. This tells the story of three friends who are about to graduate High School and embark on their dreams. They make one last wish at Disneyland that helps them understand what the true meaning of of it all is. This is a cute story about friendship, love and facing your fears. It’s High School Musical wrapped up with a different name. It’s a bit catered to an older crowd, and as we cruised at the end of May felt a little too indulgent for a specific subset of guests. I don’t consider High School to be the best years of my life, I’ll freely admit, so I may be a bit biased.
Disney Dreams – An Enchanted Classic
We’re just going to come right out and say it before we fluff it up with any superlatives. Disney Dreams is a true #stinkydiaper. This Broadway Style Show, found on both the Disney Magic and the Disney Wonder Cruise Ships is about a young girl who doesn’t know how to believe in magic. As she tries to fall asleep one night, she speaks her fears out loud thus calling on several beloved Disney characters to visit her and teach her a lesson in the vein of A Christmas Carol. No one is sure if she is awake or asleep, but one thing you can be sure of is how annoying she is. You’ve got a grown woman speaking with a lisp pretending to be about 12 years old whining for an hour straight. It’s wrong. It’s creepy, and frankly, it’s boring.
Disney’s Believe Broadway Style Show can be found on the Disney Fantasy and the Disney Dream. This is the story of a Father who is too wrapped up in his work to remember his daughter’s birthday. At her request, Genie arrives on the scene to change everything.
I’m literally sick to my stomach, because we missed this show during our cruise. We thought it was Disney Dreams and we couldn’t awkwardly sit through it on another cruise wishing we were doing anything else including being confined to our statement due to contagious illness. It wasn’t until I was writing this article that I realized our mistake. I’m still so upset about it! I’ll likely be railing about it for the next three years or more – unless Disney would like to invite us back aboard to review what is sure to be a stunning show. Seeing the work that the Genie produced in Aladdin, I can tell you without watching it, it’s phenomenal.
The Broadway Style Show, Golden Mickey’s, can only be found on the Disney Wonder. In a nutshell, it’s an award show for the best of the best Disney movies Walt has produced. It’s covered in fluff and feels more like a walking advertisement. We walked out halfway through. It’s just not very captivating.
This list isn’t entirely inclusive, as we haven’t sailed on the Disney Dream, and frankly some of the shows aren’t quite worth mentioning. But, this list does cover the most popular shows and offers a rundown of what to expect during your sailing!
► For Kids: The Broadway Style Shows found aboard the Disney Cruise Line are exciting, engaging and enthralling. There is no third wall in these productions and the entire theater is used in the production. The actors will speak to the audience, ask questions, run up and down the aisles and engage with the audience members. It’s best to grab a seat in the first 20 rows and sit on the aisle. 3D effects are also used through the show and you’ll find streamers, bubbles, or snow fall from the ceiling and rain down on the kids. It’s never a dull moment.
Have you been to any of the Broadway Style Shows Disney has to offer? On or off a Cruise Ship? Which one is your favorite? Gasp! Was it Disney’s Believe? How much more sad should we be?
► Nap-Time Version: Disney’s Broadway Style Shows aboard the Disney Cruise Line are the best way to spend your evening aboard the vessel. They’ve got lights, action and something original in every scene. Our favorite is Aladdin found on on the Disney Fantasy.
Check out our other Broadway Style Show reviews including Twice Charmed an original story written for the Disney Magic that cannot be missed, and other nightly entertainment shows including a Hector is Magic Show and a Variety Act by the Great Dubois (coming soon!).