DISNEYLAND has always been blessed by its location near Hollywood. Aspiring actors, dancers and singers have always found a place in DISNEYLAND's entertainment department. Famed musicians, many of them regularly heard on famous top ten songs, regularly work at DISNEYLAND in between gigs. (Ernest MacLean, who recorded hits with Fats Domino and Lloyd Price could be heard in New Orleans Square, for example.) Considering the caliber of talent found throughout DISNEYLAND, is it any wonder that various entertainment offerings ended up inspiring Disney's Broadway offerings?
The first Disney Broadway musical was Beauty and the Beast, a show that was directly inspired by Beauty and the Beast: LIVE! a show offered daily at DISNEYLAND's Videopolis Theater in Fantasyland. Unlike the Beauty and the Beast show at Disney-MGM Studios, the DISNEYLAND version aimed to be more than just a theme park character show. The lavish production retold the "tale as old as time" in true Broadway fashion.
When the company decided to enter the competitive world of Broadway, there was no doubt about which theme park production would be scaled up and used as an inspiration for this important project- it was DISNEYLAND's show that would make it to the big time. The musical succeeded beyond the company's wildest dreams. DISNEYLAND had truly gone to Broadway.