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Saturday, July 5, 2008

Bald was Beautiful at July 4th Wild West Show

Paris-based American singer and voice coach Barry Johnson sang The Star Spangled Banner a capella on July 4th 2008, American Independence Day, during an extended version of The Final Revue in Buffalo Bill's Wild West Show (La Legende de Buffalo Bill), Disney Village, Disneyland Paris Resort. Barry was introduced by Buffalo Bill with the following text:

"Ladies and Gentlemen, on this day, July 4th, back in 1776, a group of colonists gathered and signed The Declaration of Independence, thereby with the stroke of a pen creating The United States of America and laying the foundation for democracy as we know it today. To commemorate that historical event, Mr. Barry Johnson has agreed to lead us in the American National Anthem."
Barry was accompanied in the spotlight by a "Cowboy" carrying the American Flag and an "Indian" carrying a live Bald Eagle (Barry's also bald, hence Bald was Beautiful). The talent, accompanied by fireworks prior to the scene and stars and stripes lighting effects decorating the arena, emotionally moved the show's managers according to the Artistic Coordinator.

Unfortunately, the emotionally moving production failed to keep from moving many Spanish guests who left early, as is their habit, during the Final Revue of the second show. Why the Spanish customarily leave before the end of a show remains unclear but both personal observation and testimony by our previous Spanish manager confirms this to be true. I've learned not to take it personally but it's a shame they missed Barry and the Eagle. We'll just see how much celebration happens on Spain's Independence Day. Two can play at that game. Maybe I'll just not do the Final Revue.

The Eagle, a truly majestic bird whose name escapes me at the moment, has become a regular feature of the guest photograph area in the pre-function of the show. In addition to appearing alongside Barry, the Eagle also flew during the Buffalo Dance portion of the show, from the Canyon to a Bird Handler in the arena.

Independence Day and Thanksgiving are important holidays in the United States but expatriates know that neither day has special meaning to cultures overseas. The small added scenes in our show were the only tangible deviations for many Americans in the show, but backstage wishes of "Happy 4th of July" were plentiful. The Casual Reporter extends a "Happy 4th of July" to its readers as well.

July 4th also was the 2008 debut of the 6:00 p.m. Wild West Show Parade through Disney Village. The parade will continue daily, weather permitting, through the end of August.

1 comment:

Anonymous said...

After 9 months of being gone, I could not have asked for a first day this great. I always remind myself of how great my life is. I have my grudges with our government and know we can get back to being the hope for the future that we use to be. Some leave our show early, but it is the ones who stay that make me give blood, sweat, tears and some times my voice.