Wednesday, July 25, 2007

WDW for the Holidays: Candlelight Processional

I was thinking that there is nothing like Christmas in July and what better way to celebrate Christmas at WDW than at the Candlelight Processional. In the words of the Official Walt Disney web site:

“Nightly Candlelight Processional at the American Gardens Theatre. Revel in the joy of the season as you listen to an unforgettable retelling of the Christmas story by a celebrity narrator accompanied by a 50-piece orchestra and mass choir.”
Shows are at 5:00, 6:45 and 8:15 p.m.
We were in WDW in Dec 2006. This was our first time there for the Holidays and we were very impressed. There are many special events set up to celebrate the season, but one of the most moving of these was the Candlelight Processional(CP). There are no tickets for this show and the line is usually very long. You can however book a CP Dinner Package which is described very well at the AllEarsNet web site. By booking a package, you are guaranteed seating in a general area. Basically your first in line for seats. Since we were on the dining plan, and it would be no different than making an ADR by itself, I booked us at Le Cellier with the CP Package. Based on the times above, you needed to book eating times in the 2-3 hour window before the show time you are to attend. This was first done last year and seems like it will continue this year. We had our late lunch at Le Cellier at 2:30. Our waitress at Le Cellier gave us our CP Package Passes and we wandered over to the American Gardens Theatre and got on line about 4:15. This is a very nice open theatre with wind blocking curtains on the left and right. The stage is on the edge of the lake and the American Experience is behind you. As the show begins, the orchestra comes in first. There are various introductions as to the guest Choir and guest Conductor. Then the entire choir walks in. When you look at the stage, the guest Choir in gold, flanks the permanent WDW choir dressed in green. The WDW choir form a Christmas Tree behind the Guest speaker. Then the Voices of Liberty singers walk in to form the base of the tree. After a couple beautiful warm up songs, the guest speaker walks onto the stage. Our Speaker was Brian Dennehy of Cocoon, FX and a whole lot of other movies. Mr. Dennehy proceeded to read the Christmas story of Mary and Joseph not finding room at the inn. He would read a paragraph or
two and then the choir/orchestra would play a song. This lasted 45 minutes and was incredible. Here's a hint, don't sit too close, you won't be able to see everything. So if your at Epcot during the Holidays, the Candlelight Processional is a must do activity.

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