You can see some additional photos and info by reading my tweets: @allearslaura
In a comment on Saturday's blog, Ilene reminded me of something I should clarify (thank you, Ilene).
I attended the D23 Expo on a regular 3-day ticket - I had the same access and privileges as any other D23 member. I was not credentialed Media for the D23 Expo - the one exception was that I attended the Sherman & Menken concert as the photographer for AllEars. For all other events and experiences I either obtained a Stage Pass or stood in line like everyone else.
Upon entering the exhibit hall on Sunday I got my Stage Pass for the Imagineering session on the DNA of Innovation - which I ended up not needing because it was only half full.
Sunday was a much less busy day than Friday and Saturday had been, at least in the various sessions. I don't think any of them filled up - I know for a fact that the two Arena presentations and all of the Imagineering sessions still had room for people to walk in. The exhibit floor was busy, but not as crowded as Saturday. I had a chance to go through the new Tomorrowland exhibit, which had opened the previous afternoon. It contains "artifacts" from the supposed "1952" box. Bizarre, and since I didn't see the Disney Studios presentation I didn't really get it.
For some reason the first sessions started earlier on Sunday than they did the other two days - 9:30 and 10:00 instead of 10:30. If you weren't a D23 member and couldn't enter until 10:00 that made it difficult to attend them that day.
My first session of the day was Secrets of the Lost Chords. (The room was less than 1/3 full.) "Lost Chords" are songs that were written for Disney movies, but were then dropped for one reason or another - sometimes the movie was too long, or the song no longer fit the story, or wasn't right for the actor cast to play the role. Many of them had demos recorded which the archivists have also found. I had attended a Lost Chords session four years ago at the first D23 Expo and found it very enjoyable - i wanted to see what they did this time. Last time they had a live chorus singing the songs. Since then they have taken some of the music and have re-recorded it in a recording studio with an orchestra and professional singers. There was no chorus this time, instead, presenter Randy Thornton told us something about the pieces that he had selected, and played some of the original demo and then the new recording. We heard songs from Alice in Wonderland, Cinderella, The Aristocats, Peter Pan, and The Rescuers.
One of the most interesting to me was a song that was originally written for Alice in Wonderland, called "Beyond the Laughing Sky". It wasn't used in that movie, but it still had a very familiar melody - because it was re-written as "Second Star to the Right" for Peter Pan. :-)
The next set of "Lost Chords" they are working on are songs that were written for Mary Poppins. We heard the "North Pole Polka".
The Lost Chords, both the original versions and the new, are available as digital downloads on iTunes and amazon.com - just search for "Lost Chords".
Lost Chords ended at 11:00, and I went up to the Imagineering session that started at 11:15. Walked right in - it was half full, maybe. This one was called The DNA of Innovation, and featured a panel of six Imagineers, including Disney Legend Bob Gurr, who provided some insight into "then" versus "now". Though the tools are quite different than they were 60 years ago, the creative process is largely the same. Some of the "rules" of Imagineering:
Don't hire anyone who needs to be managed.
Don't write down the rules.
Innovation is messy.
Celebrate spectacular failures that enable magnificent success.
I have to admit that I was a little disappointed in this one - it was more like a corporate leadership presentation than something of interest to Disney fans. I think they should have let Bob Gurr tell more stories. :-)
Lee attended the day's big arena presentation by Disney Interactive that focused on video games: Fantasia: Music Evolved and Disney Infinity, the new Disney Animated application for iOS and new on-line only digital content: Blank: A Love Story and Small World. He said there was lots of enthusiasm for the presentation and he will be writing a blog post on the topic soon. (The cynic in me says that the reason most people attended was to get the Disney Infinity Sorcerer Mickey figure that will not otherwise be available until January.)
Lee, DebK and I attended the screening of the pilot for the upcoming Marvel TV series Agents of S.H.I.E.L.D. I think we all enjoyed it. It won't feature any of the Avengers, but is definitely a follow-on to that and makes references to the movies. Looks like there are some interesting characters. It'll air on Tuesday nights at 8:00 on ABC.
That was our final D23 event. When we left the Arena we could see one of the staff members taking up the masking tape that had been used to define the queue lines. That's a huge ball of tape, and he still had a long way to go...
As we headed out we saw this chalk artwork on the walkway outside.
All in all it was a pretty good weekend. I'll have another blog with more of a review and, of course, some recommendations for the NEXT Expo. :-)
Lee has posted some videos and is working on others - check out the AllEars Youtube Channel.
The previous post in this blog was D23 Expo 2013 - Day 2.
The next post in this blog is D23 Expo 2013 - Cosplay.