Disney show shouldn’t be put on ice

In true Disney-like fashion, the show’s website promised “unprecedented enjoyment” and “memories that will last a lifetime.”

By GIL STERN STERN HOFFMAN
October 2, 2013 22:28
3 minute read.
Toy Story 3

Toy Story 3. (photo credit: Courtesy Disney)

 
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When asked about complimentary tickets for the Disney on Ice show at Tel Aviv’s Nokia Arena, the show’s public relations representative said that not only were all the shows sold out, Disney on Ice probably would not come back to Israel for 20 years.

In true Disney-like fashion, the show’s website promised “unprecedented enjoyment” and “memories that will last a lifetime.” (They had to promise that to justify charging Israeli families NIS 399 for the best tickets, NIS 99 for the cheapest and NIS 49 for children under two.) With that kind of build-up, it was safe to assume that Disney on Ice could only be a letdown. But the truth is it was a really good show that both parents and kids could appreciate and enjoy. The kids were entertained for two hours during Succot vacation, and while their memories may not last a lifetime, they are still talking about it a week later.

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The skilled dancers were clearly at an international level, and that is coming from the eyes of someone who grew up in Chicago, home of the reigning Stanley Cup champion Blackhawks. For Israelis, who only recently were introduced to the concept of ice in their cups, the dancers on ice would have been amazing even if they were not dressed as fish, toy soldiers and Mickey and Minnie Mouse.

Mickey, Minnie, Donald Duck and Goofy were the hosts of the show, and it is safe to assume that the kid-filled crowd would have appreciated it had they stayed on the ice a lot more and spent less time backstage. Instead most of the show was ice-dancing presentations of the movies Little Mermaid, Tinkerbell, and Toy Story 3.

Many in the audience said the selection of movies was an odd mix. There was no theme connecting the three choices. An adaptation of Cars was part of some shows but unfortunately left out of ours.

That probably would have captivated the kids a lot more than the other three.

Toy Story 3 was a particularly odd choice, because of its quintessentially American story about an 18-year-old boy going off to college and donating his toys to a preschool controlled by an evil pink teddy bear. Kids without much older siblings don’t know anything about going off to college, and ours had a tough time figuring out who was supposed to be good and bad.



The choice is even more puzzling considering that the kids at Nokia were Israeli, and their experience at 18 will be very different; they probably felt closer to the toy soldiers who played a bit part in the show than to Andy, the kid who is the focus of the story.

We were in the nosebleed section and were worried that we wouldn’t be able to see, but were pleasantly surprised at how good a view we had. They did a good job of making sure there were good views no matter where people sat.

We enjoyed watching Donald and Goofy speak Hebrew, though chances are the skaters, who tour the world, did not understand what their characters were saying.

While there actually was not a problem obtaining last-minute tickets at the box office, the massive crowds for the shows were very impressive. People proved they are willing to splurge for their kids for a show that would be truly special.

Hopefully, the success of the shows will persuade Disney and producers Feld Entertainment not to wait 20 years to come back to Israel.

Shows this good should not be put on ice.

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