Archive for the ‘Disney’ Category

Barack Obama in Disney’s Hall of Presidents

December 11, 2009
 
An Audio-Animatronic Barak Obama in Disney’s Hall of Presidents

Barack Obama, in the form of an audio-animatronic character, is now appearing in the Hall of Presidents attraction in the Magic Kingdom at Disney World.   

Disney refers to Obama’s character as the most advanced, lifelike audio-animatronic figure created to date.   

Multi-Media Slide Show

There is a lot about Disney World that is not only entertaining, but very educational as well.  This is especially true in the Hall of Presidents.  Located in Liberty Square inside the Magic Kingdom, this attraction was originally envisioned by Walt Disney himself.  It performs every half hour on the hour and half hour.   

The show begins with a multi-media slide presentation that speaks of how our country overthrew our imperialistic roots and decided to elect leaders from ordinary citizens.  There is a brief mention of some significant moments in presidential history when the curtain raises slightly to reveal an audio-animatronic figure of Abraham Lincoln seated in a chair. 

Lincoln's Speech

This impressive creation becomes eye-popping as Lincoln rises and recites the Gettysburg Address.   

The curtain falls and the slide show continues.  Upon completion, the full curtain rises to reveal all 44 Presidents across the expansive stage.  They are introduced, one at a time, in order of their Presidency.  For the first time since the inception of this show, George Washington delivers a stirring speech.   

The climax of the presentation is a speech by Barack Obama’s character as well as his recital of the presidential oath of office.  The voice is actually that of the real Barak Obama and was recorded in the White House Map Room.  

The show was developed with the help of Pulitzer prize-winning historian Doris Kearns Goodwin.  The musical score was written by Emmy-winning composer Joel McNeely.  Actor David Morse provides the voice of Washington.  Morse portrayed Washington in the HBO miniseries “John Adams.”  Lincoln’s stirring speech was voiced by the late Royal Dano who was selected by Walt Disney himself to voice the first animated Lincoln for the 1964 World’s Fair in New York.  That show later became part of the Great Moments with Mr. Lincoln attraction at Disneyland.  

All 44 Presidents Appear in the Hall of Presidents at Disney World

Thanks, Amy, for taking these wonderful photos!

Disney World Handicap Access

December 7, 2009
 
Disney’s Guest Assistance Card Offers Special Help

Disney World has long been known for exemplary customer service.

Some people have claimed that this legendary service has diminished somewhat over the past few years.  I know that I have experienced some occasional moments of frustration inside Disney World on some recent trips.

Yet when my cousins, Doug and Amy, brought their 17 year old daughter, Brooke, for a visit this week, I saw Disney at its customer service best.

You see, Brooke is a very special lady.  She was born with some kind of un-diagnosable brain condition that makes it difficult for her to communicate.  Her vocabulary is very limited.  What few words she does know she can only express with muted grunts and gestures.  When she walks, she appears slightly lopsided.  It is difficult to gage how much she understands or what her maturity level is.  She tires easily and can get grumpy when she has had a long, physical day.

However, she is a joy to be around.  She gets excited easily.  It is wonderful to watch her squeal with delight and frantically wave her arms in excitement whenever she encounters something special.

Although Doug and Amy have taken Brooke to Disney World twice before, they never thought to seek assistance for Brooke’s handicap.  Part of that is Amy’s natural tendency to never take advantage of anyone.  Indeed, once she discovered that the Special Assistance Card enabled Brooke to jump an hour long line at the Toy Story Mania ride, Amy stated she probably wouldn’t do that again because she felt badly that she had gotten ahead of everyone who had to wait so long in line.  I asked Amy how old Brooke was (knowing full well she was 17) and then suggested that after 17 years of going the extra mile to care for Brooke, the least the rest of us could do was allow her to opportunity to jump the line a few times.  Amy, being Amy, probably still won’t use the card more than once per ride, but I wish she would!  

Amy And Brooke Show Their Assistance Card

To get the card, Doug and Amy went to the Guest Services window at the Theme Park.  They didn’t have any documentation regarding Brooke’s condition, but the Disney Cast Member only asked to meet Brooke.  Once she did, the card was issued without any further ado.  It was valid on all Disney property and for the entire length of Brooke’s visit.  It allows the guest with a disability and up to five members of their party to have access to all alternate entrances for all attractions.

The card goes out of its way to inform guests that it does not guarantee “immediate access.”  It also requests that guests obtain a FASTPASS when going on attractions that utilize the FASTPASS system.  However, Doug and Amy noted that when they went to an attraction, they were never asked for a FASTPASS and they almost always were able to jump the line for a much quicker access.

With Brooke’s physical condition, this was critical as she was able to enjoy so many more attractions for the few hours she could tolerate being in the park before she became tired and irritable.

For an angel like Brooke, who can ride the “It’s a Small World” ride twenty times in a row and find absolute delight in each ride, this gesture of extreme customer service on the part of Disney was very much appreciated. 

Here’s a video of Brooke enjoying the “snowfall” in Celebration with her second cousin–# 1 Daughter!

Character Breakfast Dining at Disney World

October 17, 2009
 
Minnie joins Mrs. LanceAround, # 1 Daughter and Office Manager Anne for breakfast
Minnie Mouse joins Mrs. LanceAround, # 1 Daughter and Office Manager Anne for breakfast

Something relatively new and gaining immensely in popularity is the character dining at Disney World.

It’s a relatively simple idea.  Take an ordinary Disney restaurant, parade some “tier one” Disney characters around during mealtime and BAM–you can charge guests a lot more for their meal!

Perhaps that viewpoint is a bit too cynical.  In reality, watching young children interact with the characters during a meal can’t help but bring a smile to your face.  Even Office Manager Anne and Mrs. LanceAround were giggling while watching Minnie Mouse scamper with a lot of energy through the restaurant.

Goofy sign points the way for # 1 Daughter

Goofy sign points the way for # 1 Daughter

We discovered a wonderful place to have a character breakfast in Disney World.  It is at the Regal Sun Resort located on Hotel Plaza right next to Downtown Disney. 

Since the Regal Sun is a little set apart from other Disney venues, it is easier to enter and exit.  It is often less crowded, which means you get a lot of attention from the characters.  Usually Goofy and Pluto are on hand.  However, when I treated Mrs. LanceAround, # 1 Daughter and Office Manager Anne to breakfast on Tuesday, Minnie and Goofy were the ones to great us.

Fresh omlettes made to order

Omelet made to order

Although various restaurants throughout Disney World offer character dining, and you can find characters at different restaurants for every meal of the day, the most popular one is breakfast.  And while there are table service character meals, most of them, like the one at Regal Sun, is a buffet.  Regal Sun has a character breakfast every Tuesday, Thursday and Saturday from 7:30am to 10:30am at the Lakeview Restaurant on the mezzanine floor of the hotel. 

The venue itself is very nice.  There are large windows overlooking the resort pool and lake area.  The decor is warm and inviting.  The staff is very friendly.  They often take photos of the entire family enjoying breakfast with a character stopping by for a visit.
Wait staff helps take your photo

Helpful staff

The food is scrumptious and there is plenty of it.  In addition to a hot buffet with eggs, hash browns, pancakes, sausage, bacon and other fare, there is an extensive array of fresh fruit and a cereal bar.  Best of all is the fresh omelet station where a chef is ready to make your omelet to order.  Delicious.

Orange juice, coffee, tea and other libations are continually refilled by the wait team as you continually refill your plate at the buffet.

Throughout the course of the meal, at least one and sometimes two characters make the rounds.  They spend time at every table interacting with the guests, signing autographs and posing for photos.  At the table next to ours, a little girl squealed with delight as she exclaimed, “Mommy, he kissed me!” when Goofy bent over and nuzzled his muzzle to her head.
Lots of good food!

Lots of good food!

Normally, the character breakfast at the Regal Sun is $22 for adults 12 and over and $11 for children ages 3 to 11.  My office established a contract with them to sell the breakfast for $19.95 for adults and $9.95 for children.  You can make reservations by calling us at 407.396.2233.

In addition to the character breakfast at the Regal Sun, character dining is abundant throughout Disney World; from having a meal at Cinderella’s Royal Table at the castle in Magic Kingdom to a Backyard BBQ with Mickey Mouse in Fort Wilderness Campground.  There’s character dining at the Grand Floridian, Beach Club, Contemporary, Swan and Polynesian hotels as well as in all four theme parks.  Each one has a different theme and provides different characters.  Each has a different cost, with breakfast being the least expensive.  Some are buffets and some are sit down meals.  Choose the one that meets your budget and provides a chance for your child (and you!) to interact with their favorite character.

It’s best to make a reservation for character dining.  Some venues, like the Cinderella’s Royal Table in the castle at Magic Kingdom, require advance reservations with a credit card.  Other venues, like the Lakeview Restaurant at the Regal Sun, can provide walk-in service.

Goofy acting, well, goofy with # 1 Daughter

Goofy acting, well, goofy with # 1 Daughter

Whichever character meal you select, plan to give yourself (and your children) plenty of time to enjoy the meal and characters.  By contract, Disney characters can only appear for a half hour out of every hour and they spend a lot of time at every table each meal.  You want to make sure you have allotted enough time for your family to get the most out of your character dining.

Don’t schedule your character meal at a time when you will want to rush out to go to a theme park!

Bon Appetite!

New Kim Possible Attraction at Disney World

June 5, 2009

Your mission starts here!

Your mission starts here!

When Jerry Siegel and Joe Shuster created Superman in 1932, the mythical citizens of Metropolis would one day look upwards and introduce him with the voiceover, “Look, up in the sky, it’s a bird…it’s a plane…no, it’s Superman.”

In 2009, a modern superhero, Kim Possible, has become the subject of the newest attraction at Disney World.  Now, theme park enthusiasts can point to this attraction and proclaim, “Look, in Disney World, it’s a new ride…it’s a new show…no, it’s…uh…it’s…uh…what the heck kind of attraction is this, anyway?”

Disney has long been known for their creative, cutting edge concepts and the Kim Possible attraction is no exception.  It is unlike any theme park attraction I have ever seen.  Which also makes it very difficult to describe.

Just a rock?

Just a rock?

The attraction is located at World Showcase in EPCOT.  World Showcase is the back half of EPCOT.  There is a large lake surrounded by 11 different “countries.”  Each country is a collection of buildings, shops, restaurants and attractions representing the culture and architecture of that country.  For example, in Japan you will find two Japanese restaurants, a pagoda, a Japanese water and meditation garden, a rock garden and several gift shops selling authentic Japanese items.

When you enter a “country” in EPCOT, the experience feels like you are really in that country.  The music you hear is from that country.  The restaurant is a copy of an identical restaurant from that country and is run by the same people.  Even all the Disney “cast members” (Disney’s term for their employees) within a country are from that country.

Seven of the eleven countries in EPCOT’s World Showcase have a Kim Possible adventure within the country.

Recruitment Station

Recruitment Station

To participate in the Kim Possible attraction, you first stop by a small cart, called a recruitment center.  There are two of them at EPCOT.   One is at the Innovations Pavilion at the front half of EPCOT.  The other is located on the Odyssey Bridge between the countries of France and United Kingdom in the World Showcase part of EPCOT.

At the cart, you are given your “Kimmunicator”–Something Disney refers to as an “interactive, handheld, cell-phone-like device using state-of-the-art technology.”  But to you it will look like an ordinary cell phone.  You also receive a piece of paper with a time and country in World Showcase where you go to begin your adventure.

Each member of your party can get their own “Kimmunicator” or everyone can enjoy the attraction with just one.  Number One Daughter received her assignment to go to the United Kingdom while Number One Son’s assignment was in Germany.  At the end of the assignment, your Kimmunicator asks if you would like another assignment.  In this way, Number One Daughter also got to pursue the evil villains in Japan.

Hunting Villians in the UK

Hunting Villians in the UK

The fancy cell phone, uh, Kimmunicator, can be activated when you arrive at your country at the prescribed time.  Here is where the attraction becomes very interesting.  The display on your Kimmunicator comes to life with a short video of Kim Possible and reveals the story line involving one of seven different villains (a different one for each country.)  You are then instructed to go to someplace that is identified within that country.  Once there, your Kimmunicator will activate something that everyone else around you assumes is only a display item.  For example, in the United Kingdom a large nutcracker soldier inside a window display comes to life and gives you important information to complete your mission.  In Japan, a large rock inside the meditation garden would magically display a Japanese Kanji Character when activated by the Kimmunicator as part of the story line to destroy the evil villain.  In the United Kingdom, one of the workers at the Tea Shoppe gives you the gift of a tea bag if you say the magic word to her, as told to you by the Kimmunicator.

Not Just a Rock!

Not Just a Rock!

There are four or five different videos for each mission which takes place in one of the participating seven countries–Each video gives you more information about your evil villain then instructions for where to go to activate the next special part of your mission.  Once completed, your evil villain is defeated, you (and Kim Possible) are victorious and your Kimmunicator gets dumped into a specific location that also appears to everyone else around you to be simply part of the ornamentation of that country.  In Germany, Number One Daughter dumped her Kimmunicator into the specified barrel sitting in the middle of the town square.

Recycling:  Super-Spy Style!

Recycling: Super-Spy Style!

What made this attraction so much fun was the ability to do it in the middle of EPCOT with all the other tourists walking around you; oblivious to what you were doing.  Afterwards, it became fun to watch other people doing the attraction and knowing what they were up to while people just passed them by, assuming they were merely using their cell phones.

Our children seemed to enjoy this attraction a lot.  But what was really fun was watching families with even younger children who obviously have seen the Kim Possible TV show and who were just tickled pink to use the Kimmunicator to activate the displays.  In Japan, for example, one of the Kimmunicator instructions sent a signal to a rock in the middle of the water meditation garden and created a waterfall right in front of your eyes.  It was cool.

Even my good friend, Jedibfa, who is a long way from being a youngster, was excited when he heard about the technology necessary to create this unique attraction.  Hopefully, it won’t be long before he and his friend, Lizthefair, come to visit us in Florida to enjoy the attraction for themselves!

#1 Spies

#1 Spies

Fantasmic at Disney’s Hollywood Studios

March 20, 2009

The Dragon Attacks

The Dragon Attacks

GUEST BLOG POST

My Number One Daughter, Amber, took a trip to Disney’s Hollywood Studios with her friends from school.  They decided they wanted to write a blog post about their trip.  Amber’s friend, Bryana, is pleased to provide her first professional blog post!–LanceAround

Fantasmic!

By Bryana

Fantasmic! is a spectacular show with tons of your favorite Disney characters. The show is somewhat based on PhilharMagic, a 3-D Disney attraction in Magic Kingdom. Mickey, who is first shown as a wizard and starts the show, is making all the magic happen.

There are different scenes from Disney movies that come to life right before your eyes. Just to name a few there is Sleeping Beauty, Beauty and the Beast, Pocahontas, The Little Mermaid, and more! There are fire works during the show that are phenomenal!

It’s a great family show and if you haven’t seen it I highly recommend that you do. This is one of the best live shows Disney has to offer!

Notes From LanceAround

Bryana is a great student and a good friend to Amber.  While it’s fun to read about Fantasmic from the eyes of a Middle School student, it also highlights the difficulty in trying to describe a show as varied and spectacular as Fantasmic.  How can you capture a show that includes a large lake featuring actors dancing on showboats and traveling in canoes; A large mountain that creates a backdrop for colorful characters of large flowers, giant neon snakes, battles on ladders and ropes, and a wicked witch that grows many stories before your very eyes.  Throw in a huge water spray that creates the screen which displays the animated movies, a lake of fire, multiple pyrotechnics, and a Mickey Mouse that disappears from the base of the mountain and reappears instantaneously on the summit and you begin to get the idea! (Click on link for videos and photos of Fantasmic on Disney’s website.)  When I asked my Disney Representative, “Just how many Mickey Mouse’s are there?” he gives an impish smile before giving the standard Disney reply, “Just one…” and before I can even ask, “how…,” he retorts, “It’s MAGIC!”

Sneak Peek of The American Idol Experience at Disney’s Hollywood Studios

February 13, 2009
Disneys American Idol Experience

Disney's American Idol Experience

This Valentine’s Day, The American Idol Experience premiers at Disney’s Hollywood Studios (formerly Disney-MGM Studios.)

While I am quite possibly the only person in America never to have seen the hit Reality TV Show upon which this attraction is based, Number One Daughter has.  (And she’s a fabulous singer, if I do say so myself.)  Last week, she asked to audition for the theme park attraction.  I began planning the transition from Orlando vacation rentals business owner to Stage Dad!

By now, you probably have read her blog post about the audition experience.  She’s quite a kid!  (Excuse me, Sorry Amber, I meant to say, “She’s quite a young lady!”)  The Producer, on the other hand…Well, we’ll get to that later.

In the Disney version of the show, theme park guests audition to be contestants on the American Idol Experience.  Twenty one guests are chosen to perform each day (three at each of seven preliminary shows throughout the day) and the winner of each preliminary show goes on to compete at the finale show that evening.

The winner of the finale show is named “Best Singer” and receives a “Golden Ticket.”

A Golden Ticket will enable the winner to go to any American Idol audition for the real TV show and jump to the head of the line.  Disney describes it as the ultimate “Fast Pass.”

For those of you looking to be the next American Idol, check back next week for step-by-step instructions on turning your Orlando vacation into lucrative record deals.  For today, I just want to share some thoughts with you about the attraction.

Perhaps the true star of the American Idol Experience is the stage itself.  A Disney cast member said that it is as wide as the real American Idol stage, but not quite as tall.  The background video screen is the same height as the real one.  The theatre holds just over 1000 theme park guests.  The stage looks similar to what I have seen when I have walked through my living room and Number One Daughter is watching American Idol on TV.  There are three seats on stage right for the contestants and three seats and a table on stage left for the judges as well as a lot of room in between for the performances.

The performers are also wired with a transponder that is used by the fabulous lighting elements of the show.  When a performer walks around the stage during their performance, the transponder signals the lighting and the spotlights follow their movements.  One Disney cast member bragged that it was the most technologically advanced show at Disney.  After seeing the show, I’m a little skeptical about this claim; however, it is a very impressive set.

At the top of the hour, the theatre begins to fill and a Cast Member comes out to warm up the audience.  During the show I attended, he was, bar far, the highlight of the show!  He was witty, energetic–The perfect precursor to the rest of the show.

Next, the judges are introduced.  From the reaction of the audience, it is clear that they have adopted personas similar to the real judges on TV.  There’s even a judge in the attraction named “Simon” who is a cantankerous, petulant fellow with a British accent.  The judge he emulates on the real TV show is probably not a very popular or well known person…Just kidding!  I’m not quite that unaware of the American Idol phenomenon!

The “Simon” character appears to relish his role as the most negative of the judges.  The attention to rejection is obvious as the host works hard to get the audience to diminish the impact of negative feedback and to offer supportive cheers for each performer.

The preliminary shows last approximately 25 minutes.  Of course, Number One Daughter was WAY better than all three contestants that I got to see perform.  But I’m sure you knew that already.  (Oops, did I already say that in my last blog post?)

Although I didn’t go to the finale show, I understand that with seven performers (the winner of each preliminary show) it lasts 45 minutes and ends with the presentation of the Golden Ticket and a confetti shower.

As an audience member, the American Idol Experience is quite a show.  But I do believe this new attraction will cause a problem for Disney:  How will they deal with having to “reject” so many guests?  Disney specializes in positive, feel good guest interaction.  How are guests who don’t win “Best Singer” (or even make it past the Casting Director) going to respond to the rejection of American Idol?  With only twenty-one daily slots on the show and only one “Best Singer”, there will be a lot more losers than winners.

It will be interesting to see how Disney deals with this issue as they get feedback on how guests receive this attraction.  I know that Number One Daughter was deeply disappointed when she made it to the Producer, only to be told that she would not be appearing in the show.  And as her father, well, “disappointed” does not come close to expressing how I feel about the Producer who dared to…Oops, I digress.

Another interesting thing I observed was that if a guest made it beyond the “Casting Director,” they were put in an area Disney cast members were careful to refer to as “The Coke Room” to await the audition for the Producer.

When I watched Number One Daughter audition and then during the subsequent show itself, I deliberately looked for the words “Coke” or “Coca-cola” but couldn’t find them anywhere in the audition area or the actual theatre.

However, in addition to featuring “Coke Red” decor and the “Dynamic Ribbon Device” motif in the “Coke” room, you occasionally spot the familiar coke shaped bottle and glasses both in the “Coke” room and on the American Idol Experience set.

I got the impression that Coca-Cola has paid a lot of money to sponsor this show.  It appeared that they are following in the footsteps of the Nike “Swoosh” by attempting to create a subconscious connection between a shape (the “Dynamic Ribbon Device”) a color (bright red) certain glass and bottle designs (the familiar Coke bottle and Coke glass) and the Coke brand.

Detesting the shameless subconscious promotional attempt, I joked aloud that given the dubious reputation of Hollywood, I know what “The Coke Room” really stands for!  (If you don’t get that, perhaps it’s best if you don’t ask.)

[Note:  Upon further investigation I have discovered that, in fact, the words “Coco-Cola” do appear at various places–LanceAround 2/19/09]

I enjoyed the incredible sets and staging of this attraction.  The dramatic tension was also obvious, creating a very entertaining show.  Guests will really enjoy this latest offering from Disney, especially if they are already a fan of the TV show.  It obviously gives the feeling that you are at the actual TV show.  Given the TV show’s popularity, this attraction is sure to be a hit.

I only hope it lasts longer than the “Who Wants to be a Millionaire–Play it!” attraction that seemed to open just as the popularity of that TV show was waning and the attraction closed just a few short years later.

Not having seen the real American Idol TV show, this attraction helped me to understand its appeal.  If you are one of those who has been caught up in the American Idol phenomenon, this experience will not disappoint!  (Unless, of course, you were counting on getting on the stage only to have the Casting Director or Producer give you that dreaded shake of the head–Like one clueless Producer did with an excellent and deserving young singer who was, far and away, the BEST singer that ever walked into Hollywood Studios and who would have been the highlight of…Uh, Sorry, I seem to have lost my train of thought again!)

Anyway, after we watched the American Idol Experience, Mrs. LanceAround, Number One Son, Number One Daughter and I strolled over to the Toy Story Mania Ride.  A cast member there was bragging that Toy Story Mania has become the busiest attraction at Disney World and I believe them.  It’s a fantastic ride that can be enjoyed by the entire extended family.

Best of all, it does not tell your Number One Daughter she can’t be on it!

Auditioning for American Idol at Disney

February 6, 2009

The American Idol Experience

The American Idol Experience

GUEST POST–On 14 February, The American Idol Experience at Disney’s Hollywood Studios officially opens to the public.  Since we sell Disney Tickets at our business, my staff was offered the opportunity to see a preview of this new show.  Number One daughter turns 14 this month and she bravely decided she wanted to audition to be on the show.  Today, I took her for the audition.  In her own words, this is what the audition experience was like.  LanceAround

I was excited–Not knowing what to expect–Hoping to do well.

I was trying not to think about it very much.  When I came through the gates of Disney’s Hollywood Studios, I tried not to think about getting before a person and singing for them.  I was focusing on the lyrics and I was making sure I had them down perfectly.  Then we started walking towards the audition and my nerves started to rise…

My nerves peaked until I got to the Producer.  Then, it was over.

I’m getting ahead of myself.  Here is what happened.  I walked into the audition.  I entered a small foyer and watched a short video.   Disney workers then guided me down a hallway and I waited until the first audition room was available.  My dad had to sign some paperwork.  If you are under 18, a parent has to go in with you.  You have to be 14 or older to audition.

My dad was in the room and that was kind of reassuring in a way, thinking about him, and not the audition.  He would encourage me to “punch it” and “shine.”  Good advice.

I was expecting to sing in front of three judges who would tell me to either go on the show or go away.  Instead, it was just one person.  The Casting Director was sitting behind a small desk with a computer and clipboard.  She asked me my name, age and what I was going to sing.  She told me to sing.

I began to sing.

She stopped me twice because I was having problems with my breathing techniques.  She asked me to relax because she could tell I was a little nervous.  That was nice of her.  I’m not sure many people would be willing to help me like she did.  She helped me to focus and to project my voice.

Enclosed in a small room…With a complete stranger…Asking me to perform for her…In short…Nerve racking!  I could barely keep my pitch in range and I faltered.  I failed.  I tried to keep in range without squeaking or going flat.

The Casting Director said that she was going to let me go on to the Producer, who is the higher judge.  I was very happy and proud that I got past her.  She said that only 10% of the people get past her, so I was even happier because I did not think I nailed that audition.  But I did!

She gave me a clipboard with my official American Idol number on it.  I walked out of the room and all the Disney workers clapped for me when they saw I had the clipboard.  I heard them do that for other people as well.

Number One Daughter gets her clip board

Number One Daughter gets her clipboard

They gave me an Ipod with over 100 songs.  I have to sing one, Karaoke style, for the Producer.  The list has all the songs you are allowed to choose for the actual show.  They do not repeat any of the songs for that day.  Once someone is selected to go on the show, they choose a song and no one else is allowed to pick that same song that day.

But when I went in front of the Producer, I choked, and it hurt my score.  It lost me my chance.

When you go to the Producer, you have to be able to perform.  You have to be a star, have pitch, punch it.  You have to, as my dad says, SHINE!

When I finished my song, he asked me a few questions.  He was very surprised to find out I was only 14.  He said that I have a lot of raw talent and I should practice more.  It was said in a very encouraging way–Not mean or hurtful–Very nice.

He said I was not right for the show and he shook my hand and I left.  The helpers guided me to the door and I left.

I was about to start crying.

I was disappointed.  I don’t know…It just kinda rose my…I kinda became hopeful…And kinda crashed.

Not a very large percentage that go to the Producer get to be on the show.  So I did not end up crying.  But I wanted to.

I turned my back and went back to my school.

Don’t be too disappointed if you don’t make it.  Don’t, like, hate Disney for it.  I’m thankful that I got as far as I got.  Yep!

LanceAround Notes:  Can you imagine how proud I am to be her father?  Please come back to LanceAroundOrlando on Sunday to read more about The American Idol Experience.  Oh, and by the way, she was MUCH better than the ones who were selected to perform in the actual show in front of the audience.  But I’m guessing you had figured that out already.