We receive considerable feedback regarding our site. Although we cannot
publish all of them, the following may be of interest to other readers.
|MousePlanet is again saddened to report on the departure of another valued contributor. Ian Parkinson, provider of much excellent coverage of the Disneyland Paris resort, has decided it is time to move on. For the time being he hopes to focus more time on directing theatrical productions. I'm sure our readers join us at MousePlanet in thanking Ian for all the time and stories he has provided over the years.
Feedback for Shoshana Lewin
|When Shoshona wrote a twopart article about Disney musicals
1 about the Walt Years, and part
2 about the Eisner years), she received considerable feedback,
a sample of which we printed in our March
27 MousePlanet Mailbag. In her response to reader Craig, Shoshana
happened to write: Sondheim is such a downer." This caused
quite a bit of reaction, and the following are some samples.
Richard K. writes:
Stephen Sondheim is widely regarded as the greatest musical genius
of the American theater in the last 40 years. Silly statements
like He's a downer are juvenile and do great disservice
to him and his legacy. They also lead people reading your writings
to think you have no credentials to review or discuss musicals.
Hi Richard. I've grown up in the theater industry and my mother
is a wellrespected theatrical publicist. I've also done extensive
research on Disney musicals as compared to nonDisney ones,
and I don't think anyone could confuse Sondheim's approach with
the Sherman Brothers'.
I don't mean to belittle Sondheim's contributions to American musicals.
However, anyone who can write a musical about the demon barber
of fleet street (Sweeney Todd), kills off fairy tale
characters (Into the Woods) and composed an entire show about
people who kill others (Assassins) has issues. These are
not happy shows and while their production numbers are filled
with beautiful music and lyrics, they are sad, dark and, often times,
They call it a review because it is an opinion, not a statement
of fact. I encourage people to draw their own conclusions.
Carli E. writes:
And if you think Sondheim is too much of a downer, please take
some time to listen to the following songs:
- Being Alive from Company
- Not While I'm Around from Sweeney Todd
- Everything's Coming up Roses from Gypsy
- Tonight from West Side Story
- All of Into the Woods
. . . some of the most beautiful words ever put to music.
Hi Carli. Thanks for taking the time to write.
Gypsy is one of my favorite shows, I love Into the Woods
and I blast Tonight in my car. However, while Sondheim's
lyrics and music are beautiful, his shows are not on the happiest
subjects especially when you compare a show like Beauty
and the Beast to a show like Passion. For example, I
love Ethel Merman's rendition of Coming Up Roses, but
it is about a mother obsessed with the success of her children.
I had a theater professor who adored Sondheim (I prefer Jerry Herman,
myself) and showed us Sweeney ToddÊ with Len Cariou and Angela
Lansbury. After seeing it, I couldn't eat for several hours.
Sondheim is not for everybody, and just because I think he's a
downer doesn't mean I don't think his works are great.
Contact Shoshana at email@example.com.
Feedback for More Mouse
New Adventure, we previewed the soft opening of the
New Adventures of Winnie the Pooh ride in Disneyland's Critter Country.
Scott M. contacted MousePlanet staff member Lani Teshima:
I am a long time reader of the MousePlanet Web site and an avid
Disney enthusiast. This is, however, my first time responding
to a article or sending in a email to MousePlanet, but after
reading the review of the Pooh ride, I felt I had to respond.
Last Tuesday, I took my nephew into the park and was delighted
to find that the new Pooh ride had soft opened. We ended up riding
it three times that day, but I am sorry to say that I am extremely
disapointed with the ride.
The soundtrack was off (when you enter, you are supposed to
hear the narrator talking about the blustery day... this was only
heard once out of the three times). In the Blustery Day
scene, there is a small fan turned on to give you the feeling
of a strong breeze. I'm sorry but I've felt stronger
breezes from the fans on Main Street.
I could go on and on about the faults I found, but I will sum
it up instead.
This ride has been a hit in Florida for some time, but that
is because it has all the latest technology and special effects
in it (for example when Tigger bounces, so does the car), but
except for the fan in the Blustery Day scene, that
is all missing, and what we are left with is yet another dark
ride using the same technology that was used on Alice in Wonderland.
I do realize that this was [former park president Paul] Pressler's
last blow to the park, and that the new park manager has been
having kittens over this ride. To quote a old 1970s TV show...
We have the technology.. we can rebuild it. If we
don't, I feel this ride is going to become a flop. Thank you for
Hi Scott; I'm sorry to hear that you did not enjoy the new Pooh
ride. Since I have yet to ride the new attraction myself, I can't
really give an opinion one way or another. You might be interested
to note, however, that you are not the only one with your sentiments;
readers at our MousePad discussion board shares
On the one hand, I'd like to give them some slack you did
see a soft opening preview, after all. Any noticeable negative comments
are hopefully noted, and major problems fixed where possible.
On the other hand, it has been discussed for quite some time both
here and at other Web sites and forums, the fact that the Disneyland
version was not going to use all the new technology of its Disney
Probably the most disturbing comment I read was someone comparing
this new ride to Superstar Limo in Disney's California Adventure
I'm hoping it's not that bad. But I will withhold personal
judgement until I check it out myself.
After my reply to Scott, he wrote back:
Thanks for reading my e-mail. I can assure you that the ride
is not as bad as Superstar Limo was. To put a positive spin on
it, I'm sure that little kids and Winnie the Pooh fans will love
Do you have specific questions about an upcoming trip
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