Over the three-day Halloween weekend, the Hollywood Bowl transformed into a hauntingly immersive movie-watching experience for the 25th anniversary of the beloved Disney film The Nightmare Before Christmas.
Conductor John Maucheri led a full orchestra and choir, which performed live to the 1993 film. Some members of the orchestra were in fact part of the original soundtrack of the film. Prior to the feature presentation, the 1929 Disney short The Skeleton Dance — part of the Silly Symphony short film series — was shown with live musical accompaniment. Following the short, the orchestra performed the overture to Nightmare Before Christmas while featuring pieces of original concept art by Tim Burton for the film.
Oscar-nominated composer Danny Elfman performed his role of Jack Skellington, singing live to film, as did Catherine O’Hara as Sally, Ken Page as Oogie Boogie, as well as Paul Reubens and Greg Proops, among others. In addition to the all-star cast performances and live orchestra, the weekend shows also featured spectacular live scenery projects brought to us by the award-winning creative studio Mousetrappe. The breathtaking scenery was projected on the facade of the Bowl, making the event a constantly evolving extension of film and music.
Concert producers Richard Kraft and Laura Engel explain, “We’re so thrilled to celebrate the 25th anniversary of the film with an extraordinary concert experience mixing film, live music, singers, and fully immersive digital projections that can only be experienced live.”
Halloween at the Bowl – Tim Burton’s “The Nightmare Before Christmas” – In Concert to Film also featured an audience participation costume contest in which approximately two dozen showgoers presented their Tim Burton film-inspired costume on the Bowl stage prior to the show. The contest, facilitated by Proops, featured character costumes ranging from Jack Skellington of The Nightmare Before Christmas to Walt Disney himself. Other special pre-show activities included unique photo opportunities with Nightmare Before Christmas-inspired backdrops, which attracted large lines, along with trick-or-treating stations.