A Voyage with Sebastian, Flounder, and The Little Mermaid

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Disney’s princesses and heroes may be the stars of their films, but where would they be without their trusty sidekicks to support them along the way? In “The Little Mermaid,” it was Sebastian and Flounder who helped fill that role on Ariel’s quest to become part of Prince Eric’s world, so it goes without saying that these two would be a big part of any attraction based on that classic movie. This is certainly true with of “Voyage of The Little Mermaid” at Disney’s Hollywood Studios, which celebrated its 25th anniversary last month. Not only can Sebastian and Flounder be seen on the marquee, as shown above, but the are also given the task of truly kicking off the show by performing in its first major musical number: “Under the Sea.”

With a cast of characters that includes crabs, fish, and other aquatic animals, puppetry plays a major role in bringing “Voyage of The Little Mermaid” to life. Nowhere is that more apparent than during “Under the Sea,” in which a technique known as black light puppetry in order to help simulate the way these creatures swim and float around. When illuminated by ultraviolet light, these florescent-colored puppets stand out against their black backdrop while their puppeteers, dressed entirely in black, seem to disappear into it. The end result is a “hot crustacean band” that seems to have swam right off the movie screen an onto the stage at Disney’s Hollywood Studios.

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