A Disney fan favorite, The Main Street Electrical Parade, has returned to Disneyland for a limited engagement through Sunday, June 18, 2017. While it truly is a sight to see, making the trip to the theme park in Anaheim, California before then may not be convenient for some. However, Disney has come up with a way for families to view the parade from the comfort of their own homes by taking advantage of the Disney Parks LIVE stream of the 20 minute long parade that will air on the Disney Parks Blog on Tuesday, March 7 at 8:55 p.m. Pacific Time.
It’s been 20 years since the parade traveled down Main Street U.S.A. says Erin Glover, Editorial Content Director for Disneyland Resort. “The quintessential Disney Parks nighttime parade, Main Street Electrical Parade began at Disneyland park in 1972, shining brightly in the memories of thousands of Disneyland park guests until the end of its initial run in 1996,” says Glover.
— Disney Parks (@DisneyParks) March 3, 2017
While the Electrical Parade has traveled to other Disney theme parks, this return visit also features the return of the parade’s original opening float and other favorite sights like the 23-foot tall clock tower, the 38-foot long smoke-breathing Elliott the Dragon and the 108-foot-long tribute to America all decked out in lights of red, white and blue.
The Main Street Electrical Parade was inspired by Walt Disney World’s Electrical Water Pageant show that traveled in front of the Magic Kingdom created in 1971. It featured fourteen 25-foot-tall screens illuminated with electrical lights. It wasn’t long before Disneyland wanted something similar for its own park.
Disney had originally hired a Chicago company to create the floats, but when the float contractor fell behind schedule, Disney decided to create their own bringing in a team of temporary workers installing and hand-tinting 500,000 light bulbs. Despite the problems faced during the parade’s rehearsal (a float crashed into one of the buildings and some of the performer’s costumes emitted sparks) the parade went off without a hitch when it performed for the first time on June 17, 1972.
Today, the parade features characters and music inspired by favorite animated movies including Alice in Wonderland, Pinocchio, Cinderella, and Snow White and the Seven Dwarfs in addition to appearances by Mickey, Minnie, Goofy, Donald and Pluto.
Was lucky enough to see the Main Street Electrical Parade at Disneyland yesterday. Haven’t seen it in forever, so I’m glad it’s back! pic.twitter.com/taujvrNxFG
— Gussy Phantom (@GussyPhamtom) March 4, 2017
Another feature of the Main Street Electrical Parade that makes it so distinct is show’s main parade music theme, “Baroque Hoedown” written by Jean-Jacques Perrey and Gershon Kingsley who were the first musicians to use the Moog Synthesiser reports the O. C. Register. The two had originally recorded the song for the album, Kaleidoscopic Vibrations: Electronic Pop Music From Way Out recorded in 1967. In 1972, Disney decided that they needed the music for their parade. Though Perrey passed away late last year, his music lives on.
“[Jean-Jacques Perrey’s] music was visionary,” says Don Dorsey, a former musical director for Disneyland. “Baroque Hoedown’ is only one tune from his catalog, but brought happiness to millions and millions of people all around the world through Disney’s parade.”
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During the Electrical Parade’s initial run at Disneyland, it is estimated that the floats rolled out onto Main Street more than 3,600 times with more than 75 million people viewing them.
[Featured Image by Frank Wiese/AP Images]