Live Shows and Entertainment at Hollywood Studios
Disney's Hollywood Studios features a wide range of live entertainment to be found throughout the park. From meeting your favorite characters to being entertained by a slew of talented actors and musicians, you'll never be without something to check out as you walk around the park.
Block Party Bash
A very high energy parade featuring pop dance music and the characters from the Pixar films Toy Story, Monsters, Inc. and A Bug's Life. The parade stops twice and performs for about 12 minutes. If you're anywhere along the parade route, you will be able to see that performance. Your position will determine which section (and therefore which characters) you'll see. This parade was moved from Disney's California Adventure at the Disneyland Resort to Disney's Hollywood Studios in March 2007.
The Block Party Bash parade has two stops along the parade route. It begins on Hollywood Boulevard and deploys between Mickey's of Hollywood store all the way down Hollywood Boulevard until about the Tip Board at the junction with Sunset Boulevard.
Block Party Bash then packs up and speeds away (literally) to the next stop which is located between American Idol Experience attraction and Sounds Dangerous. Roughly speaking, if you want to see the Toy Story floats, you will need to be located in front of Mickeys of Hollywood (Hollywood Boulevard) or in front of Sounds Dangerous (Echo lake); To see Monsters Inc, position yourself between Mickeys of Hollywood and Keystone Clothiers (Hollywood Boulevard) or in front of the ABC Theater (Echo Lake); To see the A Bugs Life float, position yourself in front of Keystone Clothiers (Hollywood Boulevard) or between the ABC Theater and the Sorcerer's Hat (Echo Lake).
There is also a small show just before the last float exits the park near the Jedi Training Academy Stage involving a final dance number and some characters from A Bug's Life.
American Idol Experience
Kelly Clarkson wannabes can have their shot at fame at the new American Idol attraction at Disney's Hollywood Studios. Guests can register for an audition before a producer to be cast in a theme park version of American Idol. After being prepped with hair, make-up and a vocal coach, they'll perform in front of a panel of American Idol judges and 'live' audience.
Beauty and the Beast Live on Stage
Beauty and the Beast plays in the Theater of the Stars and tells the beloved story of the cursed Beast searching for love. This live action performance is a Broadway style show that features musical numbers, acting and dramatics. This 25 minute long show pairs down the events of the film, hitting upon the highlights including the important scenes and favorite songs. Aside from the terrific singing, there is excellent choreography, sets, costumes and dancing that sets the bar for other live performances at any theme park.
Since the show is slimmed down to fit the 25 minute window allocated, the songs you will hear during the show are "Be Our Guest", "Beauty and the Beast", "Belle", "Gaston", "The Mob Song" and "Something There".
NOTE: Fantasmic might be too scary for little kids
Fantasmic takes place in the Hollywood Hills Amphitheater located near "The Twilight Zone Tower of Terror" and "Beauty and the Beast-Live On Stage". Watch Sorcerer Mickey battle Disney Villains in this sensational laser and light show.
Hollywood Studios Entertainment - Fantasmic
The amphitheater opens 90 minutes before the show begins. You can bring in outside food or purchase snacks inside. You can also book a Fantasmic Dining Package which gives you reserved seating.
There are long rows of metal benches that are banked for easy viewing. It's designed after the famous Hollywood Bowl and can accommodate 1,500 guests. While it's tempting to run down to the front, the "water screens" used in a lot of the sequences often produces a light mist that could head right in your direction.
Fantasmic! is a wonderful show and should not be missed. If there are multiple shows of Fantasmic! in one evening (which is the case in high seasons and during the warmer months) try for the second or third showings as they are not as heavily packed. If you're going during low season, grab a seat 45 minutes before.
High School Musical 3: Senior Year
This live show is based on the popular "High School Musical" hit movies.
Guests are invited to to cheer along with the East Side High Wildcats. Visitors will be singing and dancing along with the cast as hit songs from the movie are featured in this lively performance.
Indiana Jones Epic Stunt Spectacular
The Indiana Jones Epic Stunt Spectacular is a "must see" for fans of "Raiders of the Lost Ark." Stunt Coordinator, Glenn Randall, of the Indiana Jones movies, directs this extravaganza.
Exciting scenes from "Raiders of the Lost Ark" are re-enacted. The talented stuntmen/women are joined by audience volunteers. (If you want to participate, be very, very enthusiastic and you just might get picked..)
Fights, fires, chases and explosions are the norm in this fast paced show. (If you sit towards the front, you'll feel the heat of the flames.) The Cairo marketplace scene includes some great acrobatics.
This 30 minute "Spectacular" opened in August of '89 and still attracts crowds.
Jedi Training Academy
Jedi Training Academy was one of the most popular attractions during Star Wars Weekends and Disney made Jedi Training Academy a pemanent attraction, which offers the opportunity for kids to enlist with the Jedi Order and become a Jedi padawan (that's Star War-ese for a Jedi in training). Disney has changed how children are selected for the Jedi Training Academy now, as there is a standby line for children to line up in. Before each show, children are selected from the line in the order they waited in. The kids go up on stage and are given robes and plastic lightsabers (same kind you see at any toy store.)
Lights, Motors, Action! Extreme Stunt Show
The Lights Motors Action Extreme Stunt Show, located at the end of the Avenues of America, is a copy of the attraction that originated at Disneyland Paris. Guests are introduced to the director and the director's staff and told that they'll be filming scenes for a film about a spy who is trying to make his getaway and now they'll be filming the stunts that need to be performed. The stunts are executed and then explained in-depth how they were achieved. The action takes place in a "Southern France" setting and as the stunts get more extreme, they add more variety to the set. A large monitor in the middle of the set keeps guests entertained before the show and explains the stunts during the show. This fast paced action adventure uses specially designed cars, jet skis and motorcycles in a high speed pursuit. Some vehicles are designed to drive in reverse, while one splits in half. You’ll know which car is the “hero” and which is the “villain” by color coding.
Playhouse Disney - Live on Stage!
This live stage show features puppets and performers from The Disney Channel's Playhouse Disney programs. Shows featured include Mickey Mouse Club House, Handy Manny, The Little Einsteins and My Friends Tigger and Pooh.
Voyage of the Little Mermaid
This stage show combines state-of-the-art technology and special effects with intricate puppetry. Based on the Disney animated film The Little Mermaid, the production takes viewers "Under the Sea" where Ariel, Sebastian and their friends await.
This show appeals to all age groups and is a major attraction at Disney's Hollywood Studios. Long lines are not uncommon for most of the day.
Hollywood Studios Character Meet and Greets
Meeting characters, for young and old, is a tough thing. Sometimes there are long lines for a 30 second meet and greet, depending on crowd levels and the popularity of the character. The key is to show up right when the character does or just have lots of patience. Sometimes characters greetings are put in obvious places, like in front of the Great Movie Ride, while other times, they're "hidden" in areas toward the rear of the park. Some even have permanent areas where you can meet those characters nearly all day long.
Disney Characters are strewn throughout the park at various times. Some good places are in front of the Sorcerer's Hat, parades, Animation Courtyard, near the soundstages, or on Streets of America.