Over half of the almost 100 original performers are returning to the “Magic Happens” parade at Disneyland, Orange County Register reports.
“Magic Happens” debuted in early 2020 and was only performed for two weeks before Disneyland Resort closed due to COVID-19. The parade is scheduled to return this week, although its first public performance was canceled due to inclement weather.
The Orange County Register spoke to performer Jenn Acevedo about the parade’s return. Acevedo said, “It feels new and the same. It’s a weird feeling. It doesn’t feel like it was three years ago.”
“It feels like a dream,” said Acevedo. “I get to come back and relive the opening again.” Acevedo is an ocean dancer in the “Moana” section of the parade and said, “I do the same exact thing in the same exact spot, which I’m really happy about.”
Acevedo was a new hire at Disneyland in 2020. She taught dance classes via Zoom while Disneyland Resort was closed. She returned to work on the limited run of “Main Street Electrical Parade” in 2022 and also worked on “Fantasmic!”
“There’s a lot of returning people that still want to do it,” she said of the parade, “loved it the first time and really want to live it again.” When it came to re-learning the parade’s choreography, Acevedo said, “All of it came back. It was just like getting the gears moving again, but it was muscle memory as well.”
There’s a mix of new and returning performers in “Magic Happens.” Acevedo said, “People that were in it before have been really helping the new people and really trying to work as a team to get this thing up and running.”
The return of “Magic Happens” has been highly anticipated by fans, and was finally announced at D23 Expo 2022 last year after a year of speculation on its return.
“Magic Happens” features stunning floats with Disney characters, imaginative (and extremely catchy) music co-composed by singer-songwriter Todrick Hall, artistic costumes, and modern choreography. The parade is unique in that it’s able to run both during the day and at night thanks to lighting on the floats. Plenty of properties are represented in the parade, including “Moana,” “Coco,” “Frozen,” and “The Sword in the Stone.”
Watch the first performance of “Magic Happens” in 2020 below.