Tiana’s Showboat Jubilee

Today, October 26, 2009, Princess Tiana was formally welcomed into the Disney family. As with any royal ceremony, Disney pulled out all the stops to receive their ninth and newest princess. Many of our favorite characters were on hand at Cinderella Castle to greet this lovely lady. With the help of Mickey Mouse, a town crier announced the arrival of Princess Tiana.

Tiana Procession

Disney Characters

Mickey & Town Crier

Soon after, a lively Mardi Gras procession danced their way to the castle forecourt, followed by a regal coach and the beautiful Princess Tiana. After much pomp and ceremony, and a few fireworks, Tiana left the area to get ready for the Magic Kingdom’s newest show, Tiana’s Showboat Jubilee.

Princess Procession

Royal Coach

Princess Tiana

Princess Tiana is the heroine of Disney’s newest animated movie, “The Princess and the Frog.” Opening on November 25th, this musical marks the return to 2D hand-drawn animation from the team of John Musker and Ron Clements (Little Mermaid and Aladdin), with music by Oscar-winning composer Randy Newman. In development since 2006, this classic story is set in the great city of New Orleans and the surrounding bayou area.

Although the welcoming ceremony was only for the fortunate few who happened to be visiting the Magic Kingdom today, a larger, more spectacular event is planned for the remainder of the year. Between now and January 3, 2010, a rousing show starring Princess Tiana will be presented three times daily aboard the Liberty Belle (check your Times Guide). Joined by a six-member jazz band, two dozen Disney Dancers, and thirty randomly picked guests, a jazz themed spectacular is staged. Several of the songs from The Princess and the Frog are performed and a number of the movie’s other characters are on board for the fun.
The festivities begin at the Diamond Horseshoe where a procession dances across Liberty Square to board the Liberty Belle. Although this is great fun to watch, the real event takes place further down the river. Soon after setting sail, the Liberty Belle stops near the bridge that crosses between Pecos Bill Café and Thunder/Splash Mountains. Ask a nearby cast member for the best place to stand. Then for the next fifteen minutes a lively performance is staged. If you have plans to visit Walt Disney World during the next couple of months, I highly recommend this show.

I’ve put together an edited version of Tiana’s Showboat Jubilee. The first thirty seconds of the video were taken as Princess Tiana is leaving Cinderella Castle, but the remaining is of Tiana’s Showboat Jubilee.

Currently, the Lilly Belle is closed to guests. And during the performance, the Tom Sawyer Island rafts use the island’s north dock so as not to distract from the festivities.

As you would expect, a new line of merchandise has been created and is already available at Walt Disney World, Disneyland, and the Disney Stores. At the moment, only children’s sizes are available, but who knows what the future might bring.

Princess Tiana Merchandise

Also new is the Princess Tiana makeover at the Bibbidi Bobbidi Boutique at both the World of Disney at Downtown Disney and the Magic Kingdom. Here, Fairy Godmothers-in-training sprinkle pixie dust on aspiring princesses with three makeover packages. Different options are available that will transform your little girl into a regal young lady.

Bibbidi Bobbidi Boutique

Princess Tiana Makeover

Princess Tiana Makeover

I’m anxiously looking forward to “The Princess and the Frog” and Tiana’s Showboat Jubilee added to my anticipation. While I love 3D computer animation. It’s magnificent and allows a level of creation that Walt could never have imagined. But I’m glad to see a return to the 2D hand-drawn movies as well. Not all stories need elaborate canvases. Sometimes, less is more and I hope Disney’s latest movie proves that once again, that simple can also be fantastic.

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29 Replies to “Tiana’s Showboat Jubilee”

  1. We’re so excited about the new movie. We’ll be only be at the Magic Kingdom for MVMCP. Any chance that Tiana is around for meet & greet in the evening during the party?

  2. Just got back from a weekend at WDW. After watching the show, my daughter and I wanted to be in it. We asked a CM at the Liberty Belle about being in the show. He found out there were still spots in the next show, and we were in! It was loads of fun, and getting to meet the new Princess and her Prince without waiting in a huge line was wonderful. I hope they keep the show around for a while!

  3. Jack,

    Our favorite resort is the FQ. Do you think that the New Orleans theme will attract our new princess to our home away from home? (maybe a character breakfast or a meet and greet….) It seems like a perfect match to me!!

    Any rumors or rumblings?


    Jack’s Answer:

    You’re the third person to ask me this — inquiring minds want to know. Characters rarely do “stand alone” meet-and-greets at the resorts, so I can’t see this happening except for a promotional event. I like your idea of a character breakfast. I suppose they could reopen Bonfamille’s Café. But I think before this happens, the “powers that be” are waiting to see if the movie is a success. Let’s keep our fingers crossed.

  4. Jack- The only time I have heard of Giselle being in the park for a meet & greet was just after the movie was released. She was in toontown with the other princesses but has not been there since. I was not familiar with the movie when it first came out so even though we were there, we did not get to meet her. She has also been in the christmas day parades, but that is all.

  5. We just came back from Disneyworld over Halloween. We saw the Showboat show on the river. We loved it. Then around 1:15 we were making our way to eat and we were asked to be in the show. They choose 20 people to help put on the show. We waved scarves, waved instruments, and banged our tambourines!! It was so much fun.After the performance, we got to visit with Princess Tianna and her Prince. My husband & brother-in-law also enjoyed themselves along with my sister and 11 year old niece. So if you get a chance to be in the show or just walk don’t miss the opportunity. thanks Jack for all the work you do.

  6. My husband and I were 2 of the lucky ones on the 27th that were chosen for the 12:15ish show! We were walking off of BTMR at around 10am and a CM started walking with us and chatting. As we got to the bottom of the hill she asked if we wanted to be part of the show. I have no idea why we were chosen, but it was my husband’s birthday and he did have a pin on. We had no idea what it was about but it was a blast! We made a point to stay and watch the next show and I highly recommend it!

  7. The deal with Giselle is that the movie was “live-action” featuring a real-life Amy Adams as Giselle. Disney didn’t want to pay royalties to Amy for her likeness. Thus, no Giselle in the park. I was lucky enough to get a pic when she was leading the Hollywood “car” parade when the movie first opened. That’s the only time she was in the parks. This is another reason why Tiana is so exciting.

  8. Jack– I was there for this as well! I loved it! the music the dancing it was wonderful. I had forgotten that it was going on and as I was trying to get to Pirates I turned and ran smack into a large group of Disney executives watching the parade they looked just as excited to see the parade as I was.
    As usual wonderful work on your part!

  9. Jack– thanks for this report. I can’t wait for the movie, and can’t wait to see this on our trip in December. We’ll be going about a week after the movie comes out, so it should be perfect!

  10. Jack! Thanks so much – I love seeing all the fanfare for this newest princess. We are leaving for Disney in a little less than two weeks and this was already on my list of things to see, but I am thrilled that you outlined the best place to catch the show (now I just have to hope for a magic moment so that we actually make it onto the boat!)

    BTW – Giselle was appearing in the Studios parade for a while, but I think that was before the Block Party Bash started. I have some video of her in the old Stars and Cars. Otherwise, I haven’t heard of her doing any meet and greets lately.

    Another great blog Jack – thanks so much!

  11. As a frequent guest of Port Orleans Riverside and French Quarter, it would only make sense that Tiana have some sort of connection there. Any chance or word of this happening. I realize it’s extremely rare for a character to visit resorts, but you never know right?

    Jack’s Answer:

    I agree with you. Port Orleans would be the perfect spot to highlight Princess Tiana. But like you said, characters rarely make an appearance at the resorts. If Tiana does show up here, I suspect it would only be temporary in order to promote her new movie. But you never know, Disney is always full of surprises.

  12. Jack,
    Will you be able to watch the show from Tom Sawyer Island, or only from the “mainland”?

    Jack’s Answer:

    Although guests are allowed on Tom Sawyer Island during the show, they are restricted from the south portion of the island during the production. Fireworks are shot from the Lilly Belle and for guest safety, this area is kept clear. In addition, all of the production numbers only play on the side of the boat facing Frontierland.

  13. That’s nice the newest princess gets all the limelight in Disney, but They seemed to have
    forgotten about one other famed Princess – Giselle from Enchanted!!!! There was all this talk about bringing her to the parks!
    What happend Disney – Shame on you! ºoº

    Jack’s Comment:

    Enchanted is a fantastic movie. In fact, I just re-watched it on Blu-Ray last week and thoroughly enjoyed it.

    I don’t really follow character appearances that closely in the parks, but I don’t recall seeing Giselle anywhere — and I wonder why.

    Have any of you seen this lovely lady at a Meet & Greet or in a parade?

  14. Hi Jack,
    I just picked up Tiana’s Cookbook: Recipes for Kids by Disney Press today and I’m so excited to give it as a Christmas gift to my multicultural 5-year-old cousin. Not only does it finally have a princess that resembles her, but the recipes look yummy, the pictures are large, and Tiana ‘talks’ to the kids throughout the book. I really think even adult Disney fans could utilize and love this book. I know I’m jealous!

  15. Thanks for giving us the scoop! I am heading up to Disney on Saturday from S. Fla. We are meeting a family that has never been before and they only have 1 day in MK. What times were the Jubilee shows on the 26th? I realize they may not match on Saturday, but just wanted to get an idea. Thanks so much!

    Jack’s Answer:

    At the moment, Disney is still tinkering with the schedule so make sure you pick up a Times Guide when you enter the Magic Kingdom. I was there today and the show was being presented at 12:15, 2:00, and 4:00.

  16. Thanks for keeping us on the forefront of Disney Magic, Jack! The show looks like a lot of fun! Can’t wait for the movie to come out.

  17. We are so excited about our upcoming trip! We’ll be there when the movie opens so hopefully we’ll get to see it. My 4 boys aren’t really into the princess meet & greets(wonder why) but I am very excited to meet Tiana and all of the other princesses!

  18. I hope this show goes through March so I can get a chance to see it.

    Being able to see the first 30 minutes of The Princess and The Frog at D23 was great and can’t wait to see the whole thing.

    Jack’s Comment:

    One cast member told me that it is possible that the show might be extended if it is received well over the holidays. So keep your fingers crossed. But I want to say, this is UNOFFICIAL so don’t hold your breath.

  19. Great Job Jack!!
    I can not believe i missed it!! I was in EPCOT yesterday and did not think it was going to be that big of an event!! I am from New Orleans and returned home today! I wish i would have seen it!! Even though i did not get to see it, like always, you brought us there!!

  20. Hi Jack,

    Sounds like a Can’t-Miss new Disney Movie with all the award winning participants.

    My wife and I love “The Big Easy” so it should be good for us.

    Whenever my family is at Disney World we try to see the newest Disney Movie at the AMC Theaters in Downtown Disney West.

    A couple of times we planned our trip so we could see opening night of a new Disney release at Downtown Disney West.

    It is fun to see the movie then come out of the theater and your emersed in the Disney Magic.

  21. Wow! That would have been so awesome to see in person. I’m telling all my friends that are going between now and the end of the year about this. I just wish that I could go. At least I have some video to enjoy between yours and Disney Parks, not to mention the friends that I am asking to videotape it for me… Maybe they’ll do it, or maybe I should just try to stowaway on one of their trips. 🙂

  22. Ohhh… just realized that when we arrive to the for our trip it will be Opening Weekend of the movie. I think we might need to figure out a way to go. Thanks always Jack for sharing the fun things for us to see and do.

  23. I imagine these shows are mostly happening during the day? We are driving to Disney on January 3rd and I get the feeling we will be arriving too late to catch one of these shows. As residents of New Orleans, it would be really nice to see it. Maybe the movie and show will be popular enough that they will decide to extend it. It would be especially nice if they were to do these shows during Mardi Gras time itself. And if that doesn’t happen.. thanks so much for posting!

    Jack’s Answer:

    At the moment, the shows are only during the day. However, the schedule is being tinkered with so you never know what the future might bring. Keep your fingers crossed.

  24. Even though I was one of the lucky ones at MK yesterday, I wasn’t actually lucky enough to witness Tiana’s debut. So thank you, thank you for sharing this! I can always count on you for the latest and greatest news, commentary and footage. All Ears has really changed the way I experience the parks, so please keep up the hard work.

  25. Jack – your video made me want to dance on down to the Magic Kindgom and be part of the show! How do the people get picked?

    Jack’s Answer:

    I do not know how the guests are picked to be part of the show. Disney will only say “randomly.” One cast member told me they are selected in the early morning, but I don’t have any details. Since they’re choosing thirty people per show, and there are three shows, that’s ninety people per day. You have slightly better odds here than at other events. Good luck.

  26. This show looks like so much fun! I can’t wait to see it, and I’m similarly excited about the Princess and the Frog. Any idea where and how Tiana is meeting guests?

    Jack’s Answer:

    A new Meet & Greet area is being set up behind the Christmas Store in Liberty Square (formerly a smoking area). I’m sure this is going to be a popular destination.

  27. Jack!

    Okay, for the first time, I’m actually jealous of you.

    Being at the mouse to cover new things right when they are happening?

    Man-o-man – what a gig you got.

    This show looks much better than I had anticipated. And part of that is because of your excellent video work.

    Most people try to do too much with a single camera.

    But you allow the action to come to you which gives me a great idea of what’s actually happening.

    Kudos all the way around for this report.

    And did I see a trumpet playing croc on the far left of the boat?