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Playhouse Disney was Disney Channel's programming block for preschoolers. It aired weekdays from 6 AM until 2 PM and on weekends from 6 AM until 9 AM. Playhouse Disney was also available as a 24-hour television channel, but only in certain countries outside of the United States. In 2011, Disney rebranded the channel to Disney Junior, which continued to air former Playhouse Disney series and new original content.

Programming History

Playhouse Disney started on the Disney Channel on May 8, 1997. However, it did not use its actual on-screen logo until 1999. In spring 2001, it re-launched with new graphics. On October 7, 2002, the block re-launched with a new logo and an animated yellow clay ball named "Clay" (voiced by Debi Derryberry) whose catchphrases were "It's true!" and "Are you with me?" Clay would often morph himself into different things.

The previous programming announcer was actress Allyce Beasley. On January 1, 2007, it received substantial upgrades to its on-air presence. At this time, "Clay" was replaced by two monkey hosts, Ooh and Aah. Every summer since 2007, usually starting sometime in May, Playhouse Disney's end time on weekdays aired only four hours. Disney Channel's original series are aired over this time slot during the change of lineup. On weekends, Playhouse Disney still aired six hours.

When Playhouse Disney originally launched in the United Kingdom, it used live presentation and links, being set in a large "Playhouse" featuring different rooms and areas. This presentation format was also used for Playhouse Disney in Australia, Spain, Portugal, France, Italy, Germany and several other territories outside North America.

Playhouse Disney UK's main live presenters were Dave Benson Phillips and Alex Lovell, who were referred to as Big Dave and Little Alex. In addition to presenting the "Playhouse" (the channel's main continuity strand), both Dave and Alex presented "Music Time", where they sang mostly Disney songs, with the original recordings of the songs. Dave also presented the children's cookery show, Bite Size, alongside Sophie Aldred and Karl Woolley and puppet Mitzi the Oven Glove.

Two other segments were also featured. The first was "Circle Time", presented by Jason Canning, where he alongside a few children, made up stories from animated drawings that viewers sent in. The other was "Art Play", presented by Sara-Louise Harper, which featured her and a few children creating a piece of artwork based on a popular Disney movie.

New graphics and a new logo were introduced in March 2003, coinciding with the debut of the main Disney Channel's new look, although the "Playhouse" format was kept the same.

In Early 2004, the format of the channel was changed significantly. With this, Jason Canning was axed from the channel, removing the 'Circle Time' segment in the process. Art Play was kept, but the presenting role was taken by Olivia Bonnici after Sara-Louise Harper became pregnant in Late 2002. A dedicated nighttime block called "PJ's Bedtime " was introduced, being presented by Olivia and Big Dave. While the "Playhouse" format would remain for the next few years, the channel's presentation gradually began to focus more on out-of-vision links, like what its American counterpart would use.

On 27 August 2006, Dave Benson Philips and Alex Lovell were axed from the channel. the Art Play and Music Time strands were removed around the same time. The two remaining strands, PJ's Bedtime and Bite Size, were removed in November 2007 and May 2008, respectively. By then, the channel featured a format and identity in-par with its American counterpart.

In September 2007, the channel logo in the external promotionals (programme press releases, promos for terrestrial television) were changed to include the inscription "Channel" as in all Playhouse Disney Europe channels, but on the channel itself the logo was not changed. This move was to differentiate the channel from the "Playhouse Disney" block, shown all mornings on the american Disney Channel.

Presenters were re-added to the channel in September 2009, with new presenters Samantha Pearl and James Sherwood presenting on air between 6pm and 8pm.

Programming

Original programming

Live-action series

Animated series

Acquired programming

Animated series

  • Chuggington (January 18, 2010 – February 13, 2011)
  • Timmy Time (September 13, 2010 – February 13, 2011)

Interstitial programming

Former programming

Original programming

Live-action series

Animated series

  • PB&J Otter (March 15, 1998 – April 8, 2005)
  • Rolie Polie Olie (October 4, 1998 - June 2, 2006)
  • A Little Curious (Canadian version) (January 26, 1999 – August 15, 2000)
  • Stanley (September 15, 2001 – May 16, 2008)
  • The Koala Brothers (January 26, 2004 - May 16,2008)
  • JoJo's Circus (September 28, 2003 – January 2, 2009)
  • Higglytown Heroes (September 12, 2004 – March 29, 2009)

Acquired programming

Live-action series

  • Sing Me a Story with Belle (October 5, 1998 – 2000)
  • The Wiggles (June 17 2002 – June 12, 2009)
  • The Doodlebops (April 11, 2005 – April 4, 2009)

Animated series

Interstitial programming

  • Curious George (April 6, 1997 – 1999)
  • Joke Time (April 6, 1997 – October 6, 2002)
  • Spot the Dog (April 6, 1997 – October 6, 2004)
  • Behind the Ears (1997–2000, 2007-2009)
  • Circle Time (1997 – October 6, 2002)
  • Microscopic Milton (1997 – October 6, 2002)
  • Frankenguy and the Professor (November 3, 1997 – October 6, 2002)
  • Magic Drawings (1998–2001)
  • Pet Spot (1998–2000)
  • Feet Beat (1998 – October 6, 2002)
  • Poky and Friends (1999-2001)
  • Pablo the Little Red Fox (1999 – October 6, 2004)
  • Animal Stories (1999 – October 6, 2002)
  • Mini Movies (2001 – October 6, 2002)
  • Stanley's Animal Facts (2001-2006)
  • Mike's Super Short Show (January 1, 2002 – 2007)
  • Wiggles Time (2002)
  • Music Time (2002)
  • Use Your Noodle Time (October 7, 2002 – 2005)
  • Mickey's Letter Time (October 7, 2002 – 2005)
  • Sharing Time (October 7, 2002 – 2005)
  • BB's Music Time (October 7, 2002 – 2007)
  • Page's Word of the Day (October 7, 2002 - 2007)
  • Who, What & Where with Bear Time (October 7, 2002 - 2004)
  • Manners with Max (2002–2004)
  • Mini Show-and-Tell Time (2003–2007)
  • Project Playtime (2003-2007)
  • The World of Piwi (2003-2004)
  • Draw with Piwi (2003-2004)
  • My Little Pony G3 (2004-2006)
  • Captain Carlos (2004–2008)
  • Felix and the Flying Machine (2004–2007)
  • Go Baby! (2004–2008)
  • This is Daniel Cook (2005–2009)
  • Johnny and the Sprites (October 9, 2005 - January 13, 2007)
  • Here Come the ABCs (2006)
  • Dan Zanes House Party (2006–2009)
  • Flip (2006-2007)
  • Feeling Good with JoJo (2006–2008)
  • Here Come the 123s (2007)
  • This is Emily Yeung (2007–2009)

Announcers

Sponsorships

Rebranding

On May 26, 2010, it was announced that the block as part of a new rebranding strategy would be renamed "Disney Junior", and a new 24-hour channel replaced Disney-owned SOAPNet in the United States on March 23, 2012. International channels with the Playhouse Disney name were also changed to the Disney Junior rebranding in 2011. Playhouse Disney ended its 14-year run on February 13, 2011, and Disney Junior started the next day.

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This page uses content from the English Wikipedia. The article or pieces of the original article was at Playhouse Disney. The list of authors can be seen in the page history. As with Disney Wiki, the text of Wikipedia is available under the GNU Free Documentation License.

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