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How Disneyland Resort’s World Of Color Will Be Different When The Show Returns

World of Color at Disney California Adventure
(Image credit: Disneyland Resort)

It has been almost a year since Disneyland and Disney California Adventure finally reopened to the general public. When the parks did reopen a lot of things Disney fans loved were missing, but beginning April 22 one of the last pieces will finally fall into place with the return of nighttime spectaculars. 

The Main Street Electrical Parade will celebrate its 50th anniversary when the iconic parade returns to Disneyland for the first time in 5 years. Disneyland Forever fireworks will return, as will the popular World of Color show. While the version of World of Color we see at Disney California Adventure Friday night will be the same show that debuted back in 2010, there will be some changes fans might notice. Because a lot of the tech has been significantly updated.

I had a chance to speak with Disneyland Live Entertainment’s  Jennifer Magill, the producer of the original World of Color, on the eve of the show’s return, and she told me that while the show will be the same, it will look even better, as both the lighting and the projection effects were upgraded during the show's down time. Magill said…

The show is exactly as you remember it. However, the technology has improved over the years, so we took the downtime to be able to get new lights. So the lights are going to be brighter and more fantastical than you remember them being. And also our projections are upgraded because that technology is always getting better and better, and you’ll be able to see it.

Lighting and projection effects are most of what makes World of Color so special, so knowing those elements have been upgraded means a lot to the show. World of Color sees a collection of characters and stories from all over Disney’s history projected onto sheets of water and combined with music. Epcot's new show Harmonious, which a lot of people love, uses a lot of the same concepts

World of Color first debuted in 2010, so some of the technology we’re talking about likely dates back to those days. Doing a major upgrade would have taken the show out of commission for an extended period, something Disneyland Resort likely would have wanted to avoid during normal operation because it was so popular, but since the show was already closed, there was no reason not to take the time now.

The major upgrade likely also means that World of Color isn’t going anywhere. While we will likely see new versions of the show in the future, several different editions of World of Color have appeared in the last decade plus to celebrate holidays or key anniversaries, the investment in new tech means Disney likely expects to keep making World of Color in one form or another for the foreseeable future. For the fans that have missed the show for the last two years, that’s great news. World of Color makes its return Friday April 22. There's a lot more planned for Disneyland in 2022 so this is only the beginning of a big year at the resort.

Dirk Libbey
Dirk Libbey

CinemaBlend’s resident theme park junkie and amateur Disney historian. Armchair Imagineer. Epcot Stan. Future Club 33 Member.