review by Michelle Porter
When I was a little girl, Disney on Ice came to our town every February. My dad’s birthday is in February and he always said that the only thing he wanted for his birthday was to take his kids (my sister and myself) to Disney on Ice. We went every year for most of my young childhood and I remember those times with my dad as some of my favorite memories of youth. It always felt so magical, special and decadent. The memories of the shows themselves have long since faded, but the vivid memories of that time spent with my dad is forever imprinted on my brain.
When Disney On Ice rolls into town, I find myself filled with a nostalgic urge to go and pass on my dad’s little tradition. This year I was able to take my 9 year old daughter, Opal to see Disney on Ice’s Dare To Dream as a mommy-daughter date night. This show is a princess spectacular and my spectacular little princess ate up every minute of it. Princesses and ice skates, what more could you want? I knew we were in the right place when we walked up to the Rose Garden and it was crawling with little girls in princess costumes (Opal wore her Rapunzel Halloween costume after a very long deliberation at home between that one and a giant gold Belle dress).
The show is Disney in all it’s over-the-top goodness. Those folks know how to put on a good show. This show spotlights three princess stories, Princess Tiana (The Princess in the Frog), Cinderella and Rapunzel. There really aren’t any surprises here. Short and sweet condensed versions of the Disney movies with a heaping helping of ice skating eye-candy thrown over the top. The show was filled to the brim with the songs we know and love, lots of funny side-kick antics and beautifully choreographed skating routines. The one unexpected twist was that they have added some aerial acrobatics into the Tangled storyline. For me, that was the highlight of the show. Rapunzel and Flynn twirl high over the ice on long golden silk. It was beautiful to watch and precious to see my daughter’s eyes grow big and her jaw drop as she watched them leave the ice. I heard a little girl behind me whisper, “They’re flying!” It was lovely.
The show concludes with an elaborate finale that includes a parade of about ten other Disney princess/prince combos (in case they left out your favorite) all dressed in white and gold, a little dance party and a few blasts of fireworks. My daughter left singing and with a huge grin on her face. I left feeling a little glimpse of what my dad must have felt thirty plus years ago when he watched his daughters skip away from the Disney ice. It was a great show and a great night.
The down side to the Disney machine is the over the top merchandising. The halls of the Rose Garden are lined with vendors pedaling extremely expensive souvenirs (snow cones in a souvenir cup and cotton candy with a foam crown were the cheapest I saw at $12 each). So know your budget before you go. I actually picked up a mini Disney Princess coloring book in the $1 section at Target last week and brought that in my purse to give her as a souvenir(and I forked over the cash for the cotton candy/tiara combo). She was tickled pink.
Michelle and her daughter were given complimentary tickets to the performance. They were not compensated for this review.
posted by Tabitha Rhodes