Disney’s The Little Mermaid is turning 30 this year, and while some millennials will be celebrating with an “Under the Sea”-themed party, others who saw the animated film when it first hit theaters in 1989 might be feeling like “Poor Unfortunate Souls” realizing they’ve aged three decades.
But it’s 2019, 30 is the new 20 and our favorite films like Rudy and Breakfast at Tiffany’s are being celebrated in live settings with orchestral accompaniment. Returning after debuting in 2016, Disney’s The Little Mermaid Live in Concert at the Hollywood Bowl, on May 17 and 18, celebrates the film written and directed by Ron Clements and John Musker with two evenings of music that include Glee‘s Lea Michele as Ariel, Mrs. Doubtfire‘s Harvey Fierstein as Ursula and Cheech Marin of Cheech and Chong fame who has appeared in Disney films like Coco and the Cars trilogy, appearing as The Little Mermaid’s lobster-loving Chef Louis.
The live show will also feature Peter Gallagher as King Triton, Leo Gallo as Prince Eric and Ken Page as Sebastian, taking place at the “Hollywood Fish Bowl Dive-In Theatre” with plans to remake the iconic venue into an ocean paradise. Music from the Oscar and Grammy-winning score, as well as Broadway’s The Little Mermaid, will be performed by a live orchestra led by conductor Michael Kosarin, followed by an encore from the film’s composer Alan Menken, whose credits include Beauty and the Beast, Aladdin and Pocahontas.
Michele says she’s “honored to be able to perform these timeless songs at the Hollywood Bowl,” while Fierstein says in a statement provided to Billboard that “Poor Unfortunate Souls” is one of “the greatest Disney villain songs created for one of the most flamboyant Disney villains,” adding the opportunity to play the Cecaelia sea witch is “a dream from which I hope to never awaken.”
To recreate the feeling of an underwater night out at the “dive-in,” the evening will include “a full program of aquatically-themed previews of coming attractions, nostalgic animated snack bar commercials and the 1938 Silly Symphony cartoon ‘Merbabies’ featuring the world premiere of a live original score composed and performed by 17-year-old piano sensation Emily Bear,” according to a press release. “Audiences are also invited to participate in a Little Mermaid-themed costume contest and unique photo opportunities to get them in the spirit before the show starts.”
Award-winning creative studio Mousetrappe will utilize projection mapping technology to transforms the facade of the 19,000-capacity venue into an underwater paradise that comes alive with marine life and fauna. Little Mermaid Live is directed by Richard Kraft and produced by Laura Engel & Kraft, Columbia Artists’ Tim Fox and Alison Ahart Williams, and Live Nation’s Andrew Hewitt and Bill Silva, in association with Disney Concerts.
“For me an evening at the Hollywood Bowl has always resembled the perfect night of hanging out at a classic drive-in,” says Kraft. “It’s a night out with family and friends, enjoying a communal experience in a classic outdoor venue watching a movie together under the stars.”
Tickets go on sale Friday (April 5) at 10 a.m. PT. Presales are available for American Express card members. Click here to learn more and purchase tickets.