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Lord Robert

"Not pet. Wingman."
Apr 18, 2014
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RE: #KD40 - On Stage

Here's to hoping that it's another Broadway-style show.
 

Mushroom

Getting aHEAD of myself
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Feb 12, 2011
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RE: #KD40 - On Stage

Alright, so KD40: On Stage debuts in two weeks, and I am curious as to what we can expect to see. This show is no doubt the "main show" of the 2014 season (sort of Kings Dominion's London Rocks), and it will be filling the shoes of On Broadway, which in my opinion was a very well done show. The park has posted next to nothing about this show since announcing it. However, if this show is produced somewhat like On Broadway, then things will be good.

As somebody who doesn't like Broadway stuff in the least, the fact that I liked On Broadway says something. Kings Dominion's former entertainment company, MoonMaxx, did a very good job selecting quality performers, who played their parts very well. The costumes were also very well done, and the entire production itself was well produced. Heck, the idea in general of a Broadway show beats the pop/rock music shows that have played in the past. Only two things were really lacking in On Broadway: a.) choreography, which I think helps solidify a show, and b.) sets; On Broadway had such a minimalist set, with nothing more than colored, lit up sheets in the background as a permanent set. There were props, like ladders, pianos, dice, chairs, but it was still empty. One scene took place in a restaurant, and an enormous three-dimensional restaurant backdrop-set lowered into place. I wonder why that wasn't utilized more often.

I hope KD40: On Stage improves on those faults, while sticking with what made its predecessor a good show. Something I noticed this year, is that the performers around the park are even more talented than last years. No hate against last year's cast, but shows like Pop Fusion, Street Beats, Got Country, etc. did have some spottier performers. Unlike last year, this year I haven't really seen somebody who I thought I can sing better than (which isn't saying much, since I can't even whistle on-key, but still). Just take my word for it, these guys are good. On Broadway had the strongest cast in the park; I hope the same goes for this show. If that's the case, I expect amazing things as far as cast goes.

Looking at RWS & Associates' Facebook page, it looks like their theme park shows (including those at Cedar Fair parks) do have a much fuller set than what we've seen before. So yay. I'm sure the spectrum of the set is up to the theme park's budget, but hopefully we will see some improvement in sets.

As far as choreography goes, I can't remember if Kings Dominion was casting dancers back when they had audition information on their website. If anybody can recall, this could tell us if this show will involve dancing. The other shows do not involve an extreme amount of dancing.

Anyway, looking at the show's description...
Kings Dominion said:
We are turning back the clock and bringing 40 years of memories to life on stage. From the 1970s to today, this high energy show celebrates not only the greatest hits that have defined the last 40 years but also takes you on a journey through the rich history that has made Kings Dominion Virginia’s destination for family fun!

...I wonder if this show will include some songs from the park's original shows. Youtube user KDFanPre91 made a series of videos which use the soundtrack from some of the park's original shows in the background. I wonder if that is the kind of music this show will have. Click the spoiler tab to see.





Whelp, that's all I've got. I guess we'll find out for sure in two weeks.

And here's to hoping that the hashtag is the worst part of the show.
 
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Nov 1, 2012
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RE: #KD40 - On Stage

Given the park's show description, I don't think this is going to be a "best of" performance featuring scenes from the former Broadway shows of the Kings Production era 1975-1992.

It sounds like it will be similar to the former "All Access" show featuring contemporary music from the decades the park has been open (Mid-1970's through the 2000's). I assume the performance will feature some sort of visual media showcasing the park's history between the live performance sets.

There are a couple cast members from 2013 that have been performing in the 2014 shows this spring. One guy has already left the contemporary/pop music show to start rehearsing in the #KD40 show. He was in last year's "On Broadway" show. Another guy has been performing, (singer), in the country music & karaoke shows in 2014. He performed in the Haunt show (KD theater) last fall and was in the 2013 spring/summer country music and contemporary / pop music shows.

It appears most of the female performers are new in the 2014 shows this spring. I did not recognize any of them from last year.

I am hearing, through the grapevine, that 35-40% of the "On Broadway" cast will be performing in the #KD40 show this year. I have no idea who is returning, though, and I don't know if the cast size will be 12 folks this year as it was for last year's "On Broadway" show. The cast has already started rehearsals for #KD40 (the performers started this past Tuesday or Wednesday).
 
Nov 1, 2012
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RE: #KD40 - On Stage

From Kings Dominion's Facebook page:

THE COUNTDOWN IS ON! At 3:00 THIS Saturday we’ll be premiering our brand new live entertainment show, #KD40: On Stage! This high energy, Las Vegas style show will take guests on a journey through the decades! #KD40: On Stage features the beloved Singing Mushrooms, and acts surrounding the Eiffel Tower, WaterWorks, Candy Apple Grove and Safari Village. You don’t want to miss this! Visit the link below for more info! And click “Like” if you’re coming to watch this great show with us!
 

Lord Robert

"Not pet. Wingman."
Apr 18, 2014
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RE: #KD40 - On Stage

A Las Vegas style show eh? This is going to be something alright.
 
Nov 1, 2012
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RE: #KD40 - On Stage

I find it interesting that the park is placing so much emphasis on this year's show at the Kings Dominion Theater. Last year they kept plugging "All Wheel Sports" show all last season and "On Broadway" took a back seat to it. (Even though both shows were new).

Should be interesting to see if "#KD40 On Stage" has raised the level of show production values from previous years.
 
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Lord Robert

"Not pet. Wingman."
Apr 18, 2014
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RE: #KD40 - On Stage

Wow a full set (for the possible finale)! Haven't seen that kind of thing in YEARS. Now I'm excited to see this! :D
 
Nov 1, 2012
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RE: #KD40 - On Stage

Yep, it appears they have done the proper framing of the performers on the stage; and what little of the set that is seen, does appear to have a "professional finish" to it.

They seem to have kept the cast at 12 performers. Based on the photos, it might be the finale?

2nd close-up of the performers (Courtesy of KD's Facebook page).

 

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Lord Robert

"Not pet. Wingman."
Apr 18, 2014
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RE: #KD40 - On Stage

The set reminds me a bit of the opening number from the 1992 show It's Magic, the archways do sort of look like that (done small scale here of course).
 

Lord Robert

"Not pet. Wingman."
Apr 18, 2014
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RE: #KD40 - On Stage

Already those Singing Mushrooms puppets are better than London Rocks' puppets. ;-P

But yet the director's quote: "A huge spectacular" is a bit of an overstatement; however with that said, I'm still going to see this and it's nice that the show has a pre-show curtain for a change! :D
 
Nov 1, 2012
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RE: #KD40 - On Stage

VAman93 said:
Already those Singing Mushrooms puppets are better than London Rocks' puppets. ;-P

But yet the director's quote: "A huge spectacular" is a bit of an overstatement; however with that said, I'm still going to see this and it's nice that the show has a pre-show curtain for a change! :D

Yeah, I think the "spectacular" comment was a little hyped. Especially when there appears to be no change of the backdrop (hanging scrim) during the whole show. I thought they would have 2-3 different backdrops for the sets they are featuring in the show.

Oh well, it seems the entertainment budget increases right now are going toward hiring more performers each season (clown band for 2014). Maybe when the park finds the right balance in the number of entertainment folks, they can work on show production values (sets, etc.) and new/improved show facilities.
 

Lord Robert

"Not pet. Wingman."
Apr 18, 2014
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RE: #KD40 - On Stage

Maybe next year another new show or #KD40 On Stage 2.0 will focus on making great sets that could spark memories of the Taft/Kings Entertainment era.

So is anyone going to see it Saturday? I'd love to hear how the show went. :)
 
Nov 1, 2012
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RE: #KD40 - On Stage

VAman93 said:
Maybe next year another new show or #KD40 On Stage 2.0 will focus on making great sets that could spark memories of the Taft/Kings Entertainment era.

It would be wonderful to see that happen. But, given this show is so specific to Kings Dominion, I don't see the park putting that much money in sets/hanging scrims only to toss them out in 2 years.

As I have stated numerous times before, it is hard to get a good ROI on show productions at Cedar Fair parks due to the diversity of the show facilities across the park chain. It appears that there is a central park chain creative team that comes up with a show concept and outline of the performance (music, theme, & set flow).

It is then up to each individual park to place the show (indoor theater or outdoor amphitheater); decide on cast size based on the show facility; hire a 3rd party entertainment production company to do, at a minimum, the performer casting. Then, each park has to decide if they want to do the sets, props, costumes, lighting, and sound in house or hire another 3rd party to handle it, or let the entertainment production company, doing the casting, deal with it.

Because of this, the parks don't get a big budget for these shows. They run for 2 years on average and most of the sets are then dismantled. I assume the parks might be able to salvage some of it to be re-used in some way and the rest is trashed. I am sure the costumes are cleaned and put in storage somewhere. I pretty sure they are re-purposed for another future entertainment production. The lighting is re-used / re-configured for future shows; as well as the sound system.

Heck, some of these things might not be the property of the park; but, belong to the entertainment company or some other 3rd party business.

Just think of the money BGW spends on their show productions. These shows don't rotate with Tampa, so the park has to let them run long enough to get a proper ROI. That is why those shows run 4-5 years before they are retired. (Yes, they do get tweaked over time; but, it appears to me 80%-90% of the show is the same).

It would be nice to see a show production on the level of what was produced during the Family Leisure/Taft/KECO years; but, those shows were very expensive to create/produce and they would need to run for 4-6 years to get a good return on the investment made (that is why the shows were rotated between 3-4 parks in the former chain and might have played at one of those parks for 2 years before rotating to the next). It might be possible to start that again; but, the former KECO parks would be the only ones to host them until some of the other main Cedar Fair parks could build theaters of similar size and capabilities (like Cedar Point, Knotts, and maybe Dorney and Worlds of Fun).
 

Lord Robert

"Not pet. Wingman."
Apr 18, 2014
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RE: #KD40 - On Stage

To those who were at Kings Dominion today, how was the show?
 
Nov 1, 2012
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RE: #KD40 - On Stage

Well, it did not take long for someone to post a video of the "#KD40 - On Stage" show. If you want the show to be a complete surprise when you see it in person, just don't watch it. Whether or not KD will have the video pulled from YouTube is another story.

This video is NOT the whole show. It appears to be the first half of the production. There are 3 folks in this show that performed in last year's "On Broadway" (2 guys and 1 girl). The rest of the cast is new. A couple thoughts, based on what I have seen in the video:

1) The sets are the most professional/finished looking I have seen since Cedar Fair took over. The stage, for once, is properly done to frame and give focus to the performers. The lighting system appears to be very good for this performance.

2) The cast is strong and has a good mix of singers and dancers. I think this cast is even a little stronger in talent than last year's "On Broadway" cast.

3) It appears the Singing Mushrooms are used between the performance sets to talk about a particular time period and/or park section. They sort of introduce the next set in the show. They have a somewhat funny dialog with each other (including some corny jokes; but, I think it was intended to be that way).

I am planning to go to the park next weekend to see this show as well as the 2014 version of "All Wheel Sports". Next weekend should bring the entertainment schedule up to 100% for the main summer season.

 
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