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Finding Nemo: The Musical was a musical show based on Disney·Pixar's 2003 animated film, Finding Nemo, located at the Theater in the Wild in DinoLand U.S.A. at Disney's Animal Kingdom.

On March 12, 2020, the show had its final performance before Walt Disney World Resort closed temporarily due to the COVID-19 outbreak's impact on Florida. However, following Walt Disney World Resort's reopening, it was announced that a new reimagined version of the show entitled Finding Nemo: The Big Blue... and Beyond! will premiere on June 13, 2022, as part of Walt Disney World's 50th anniversary celebration.[1]

History

The stage musical Tarzan Rocks! occupied the Theater in the Wild at Disney's Animal Kingdom in Orlando, Florida from 1999 to 2006. When the musical closed in January 2006, it was rumored that a musical adaptation of Finding Nemo would replace it.[2] This was confirmed in April 2006, when Disney announced that the musical adaptation of Finding Nemo, with new songs written by Tony Award-winning Avenue Q composer Robert Lopez and his wife, Kristen Anderson-Lopez, would "combine puppets, dancers, acrobats, and animated backdrops" and open in late 2006.[3] Years later, Anderson-Lopez explained that she had written a compact 15-minute a cappella version of the story of Oedipus; someone at Disney read it and recognized her talent for condensing material, and offered her the opportunity to make a pitch for the Finding Nemo project.[4]

Tony Award-winning director Peter Brosius signed on to direct the show, with Michael Curry, who designed puppets for Disney's successful stage version of The Lion King, serving as leading puppet and production designer.[5]

Anderson-Lopez said that the couple agreed to write the adaptation of "one of their favorite movies of all time" after considering "the idea of people coming in [to see the musical] at 4, 5 or 6 and saying, 'I want to do that'....So we want to take it as seriously as we would a Broadway show".[6] To condense the feature-length film to 30 minutes, she and Lopez focused on a single theme from the movie, the idea that "the world's dangerous and beautiful".[6]

The 40-minute show (which is performed six times daily) opened on January 2, 2007.[5] Several musical numbers took direct inspiration from lines in the film, including "In The Big Blue World", "Fish Are Friends, Not Food", "Just Keep Swimming", and "Go With the Flow".[5] In January 2007, a New York studio recording of the show was released on iTunes, with Lopez and Anderson-Lopez providing the voices for Marlin and Dory, respectively.[5] Avenue Q star Stephanie D'Abruzzo also appeared on the recording, as Sheldon/Deb.[5] Finding Nemo was the first non-musical animated film to which Disney added songs to produce a stage musical as well as the first Pixar film to be turned into a stage musical.[5] In 2009, Finding Nemo – The Musical was honored with a Thea Award for Best Live Show from the Themed Entertainment Association.[7] In 2019, a 60 minute version of the show's script would be licensed for children's theater companies as Finding Nemo Jr.: The Musical.[8]

On July 25, 2020, following Walt Disney World's reopening after being temporarily closed due to the COVID-19 pandemic, all stage shows such as Finding Nemo: The Musical, Indiana Jones Epic Stunt Spectacular!, and Beauty and the Beast Live on Stage have not returned due to a dispute between the Actor's Equity Association and Walt Disney World. [9]

On September 14, 2021, it was announced that a "reimagined" version of the show would open in 2022.[10] However, on November 19, 2021, it was announced that the show would be replaced by a new show entitled Finding Nemo: The Big Blue... and Beyond!. [11] The show features a new framing story of the Tank Gang telling Nemo's story to fish at the Marine Life Institute after they were taken in for rehabilitation after the post-credits scene of Finding Dory.

References

  1. Gross (September 14, 2021). "New Updated Finding Nemo Musical Coming to Disney's Animal Kingdom Theme Park in 2022".
  2. Finding Nemo – The Musical, Walt Disney World Magic.
  3. Hernandez, Ernio. "Avenue Q Composer Lopez Co-Pens Musical Finding Nemo for Disney,"Playbill.com (April 10, 2006).
  4. Gross, Terry (April 10, 2014). "Transcript of "Songwriters Behind 'Frozen' Let Go Of The Princess Mythology"". NPR. Retrieved on April 11, 2014.
  5. 5.0 5.1 5.2 5.3 5.4 5.5 Brown, Sophie (June 19, 2012). "Pixar Week: Finding Nemo: The Musical is a Hidden Gem | GeekMom", Wired. Retrieved on January 9, 2014. 
  6. 6.0 6.1 Maupin, Elizabeth (November 26, 2006). "Swimming with big fish", Orlando Sentinel. Retrieved on March 22, 2007. 
  7. "14th Annual Thea Awards Honor Outstanding Achievement | Theatre content from Live Design Magazine". Livedesignonline.com (January 31, 2008). Retrieved on January 9, 2014.
  8. https://boardwalktimes.net/finding-nemo-the-musical-to-be-licensed-for-school-productions-in-2021-96ac13a28301
  9. "Actors’ Equity Union Targets Disney With Social Media Video: “There’s Nothing Magical About COVID-19”". www.blogmickey.com (July 25, 2020).
  10. Coffey, Kelly (2021-09-14). "NEW Reimagined 'Finding Nemo' Musical Coming to Animal Kingdom". Inside the Magic.
  11. "“Finding Nemo: The Big Blue…and Beyond!” Debuting 2022, Replacing Finding Nemo the Musical". www.blogmickey.com (November 19, 2021). Retrieved on November 19, 2021.


v - e - d
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The Oasis
The Oasis Exhibits
Discovery Island
Tree of LifeIt's Tough to Be a Bug!Discovery Island TrailsWinged Encounters - The Kingdom Takes Flight
Africa
Kilimanjaro SafarisPangani Forest Exploration TrailsWild Africa TrekA Celebration of Festival of the Lion King
Rafiki's Planet Watch
Wildlife Express TrainConservation StationThe Animation Experience at Conservation StationHabitat Habit!Affection Section
Asia
Feathered Friends in Flight!Expedition EverestKali River RapidsMaharajah Jungle Trek
DinoLand U.S.A.
DinosaurThe Boneyard PlaygroundFinding Nemo: The Big Blue... and Beyond!Chester and Hester's Dino-Rama (Fossil Fun GamesTriceraTop Spin)
Pandora: The World of Avatar
Avatar: Flight of PassageNa'vi River Journey
Current Entertainment
DiVineDisney KiteTails
Former Attractions and Entertainment
Discovery River BoatsCamp Minnie-Mickey (Pocahontas and her Forest Friends) • Dinosaur JubileeJourney into the Jungle BookTarzan Rocks!UP! A Great Bird AdventurePrimeval WhirlThe Jungle Book: Alive with MagicRivers of Light: We Are OneFlights of Wonder
Resorts
Disney's Animal Kingdom LodgeDisney's Animal Kingdom VillasDisney's Coronado Springs ResortDisney's All-Star Movies ResortDisney's All-Star Music ResortDisney's All-Star Sports Resort


v - e - d
Finding Nemo - Logo.png
Media
Films: Finding Nemo (video) • Finding Dory (video) • Exploring the ReefMarine Life InterviewsDory's Reef CamPixar Popcorn (Dory Finding)

Video Games: Finding NemoFinding Nemo: The Continuing AdventuresFinding Nemo: Escape to the Big Blue Disney UniverseNemo's ReefFinding Dory: Just Keep SwimmingDisney Crossy RoadKinect Rush: A Disney/Pixar AdventureDisney Infinity: 3.0 EditionLEGO The IncrediblesDisney Emoji BlitzDisney Heroes: Battle Mode
Music:: Finding NemoFinding DoryFinding Nemo: The MusicalFinding Nemo: Ocean Favorites
Books: Little Golden BookDisney's Wonderful World of ReadingBig Golden BookThe Art of Finding NemoThe Art of Finding Dory
Cancelled projects: Finding Nemo 2

Disney Parks
Disney's Art of Animation ResortDisney's Explorers LodgeCrush's CoasterDisney Animation BuildingFinding Nemo Submarine VoyageIt's a Small WorldNemo & Friends SeaRiderPixar Pal-A-RoundThe Seas with Nemo & FriendsTurtle Talk with CrushMr. Ray's Pop QuizBruce's Shark ChallengeFinding Dory's Friends

Entertainment: Disney KiteTailsFantasmic!Finding Nemo: The MusicalPixar Playtime PalsRivers of Light: We Are One
Parade: Disney Stars on ParadeHappiness is Here ParadeMickey's Storybook ExpressPaint The Night ParadePixar Play ParadeTokyo Disneyland Electrical Parade: DreamLights
Firework: Disneyland ForeverHappily Ever AfterIgnite the Dream: A Nighttime Spectacular of Magic and LightMomentousTogether Forever: A Pixar Nighttime SpectacularILLUMINATE! A Nighttime CelebrationTree of Life AwakensWonderful World of AnimationWorld of Color
Summer: Mickey's WaterWorksPixar Water Play Street Party!Summer Blast

Characters
Finding Nemo: NemoMarlinCoralDoryPearlTadSheldonMr. RayBruceAnchorChumGillNigelCrushSquirtDr. Philip ShermanDarlaAnglerfishSeagullsMoonfishWhaleTank Gang

Finding Dory: JennyCharlieBaileyDestinyHankFluke and RudderGeraldBeckyOttersGiant SquidStanBillStingrays
Other: SeaRider

Locations
AustraliaGreat Barrier ReefSydney HarbourSharks' LairAbyssopelagic ZonePhilip Sherman's Dentist OfficeEast Australian CurrentAngel's CoveCaliforniaMorro BayMidnight ZoneMarine Life Institute
Objects
AquaScum 2003Pixar BallA113Pizza Planet TruckP. Sherman's Diver Goggles
Songs
Finding Nemo: Nemo EggFirst DayField TripLet's Name the SpeciesJust Keep SwimmingBeyond the Sea

Finding Dory: Main TitleO, We're Going HomeWhat a Wonderful WorldUnforgettableSolsbury Hill
Musical/Theme Parks: In The Big Blue WorldDory's DittyFish Are Friends, Not FoodWhere's My Dad?We Swim TogetherGo With the Flow

See Also
The Science Behind PixarPixar in a BoxFinding Nemo (franchise)Finding Nemo 2
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