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The American Idol Experience

With all the thrills and suspense that have made it a television and pop culture phenomenon, “American Idol” comes to Walt Disney World Resort in a groundbreaking new attraction at Disney’s Hollywood Studios theme park.

“The American Idol Experience” captures the energy and excitement of the TV series, with some Disney’s Hollywood Studios guests auditioning to take the spotlight onstage, while their fellow guests cheer them on from the audience and vote for their favorite singer with instant results.

The attraction was developed by Walt Disney Imagineering in conjunction with FremantleMedia Enterprises (FME) and 19 TV Ltd.  It is based on the smash-hit television show “American Idol” – produced by 19 TV Ltd. and FremantleMedia North America (FMNA) – and is designed to immerse park guests in the authentic feel of a live television production.

Each show takes place in a 1,000 seat, indoor theater that features the twirling neon signs and a multi-layered backdrop inspired by the actual “American Idol” set in California. Building on its hallmark of attention to detail, Walt Disney Imagineering worked with the Hollywood set designer who designed the actual TV show set for “American Idol.” The newly designed venue is the most technologically advanced theater found at Walt Disney World Resort.

Designed to reflect the best and brightest elements of the TV show, “The American Idol Experience” includes an audition process open to Disney’s Hollywood Studios guests 14 and older (audition slots are limited and interested guests are encouraged to arrive early).  These guests perform live in front of a Disney’s Hollywood Studios casting director for the opportunity to be cast in one of the preliminary theme park shows that same day. 

If shown to have that special “star quality” during the multi-step audition process, it’s on to performance training, hair and make-up. Then, the lights come up and it’s showtime for the singers as they try to impress an audience of theme park guests, plus a panel of three expert judges.

Fellow park guests will be able to enjoy the performances just like at a live television taping. Then, audience members vote for their favorite performance using the armrest touchpads, with their votes tallied to determine the top singer.

Performers with the highest votes during the preliminary shows will return for a high-energy, grand finale show that same evening. After their encore performances, the big moment arrives. It’s a super-charged, eye-popping scene as audience votes are tallied, the other performers drop off, music builds and the spotlight shines down, amid a blizzard of confetti, on the day’s top singer. In addition to their new-found theme park fame, the top vote-getter will receive “The American Idol Experience” Dream Ticket, which allows an eligible holder to schedule a front-of-the-line audition to a future regional audition for the “American Idol” television show. And every member of the audience can take a bow, too, because they had a role in deciding that day’s star.

The full attraction description

About this Attraction

Location: Echo Lake, Disney's Hollywood Studios

Type: Interactive experience

Duration: Preliminary shows 25 minutes; Grand finale show 45 minutes


Pal Mickey Interaction

Best time to visit: Visit early shows for the best chance to audition.

Tips & Fun Facts

Check Park Times Guide or the board outside the attraction for daily showtimes.
Audition openings are limited, only a few singers will be chosen for each preliminary show and auditions will likely close early in the day. A limited number of assigned audition times may be available in advance from time to time.
Guests who aren't performing get a chance to vote for their favorite using an interactive keypad.

Dream Ticket recipients must satisfy AMERICAN IDOL* TV program requirements in effect at time of use, such as age and residency (as of October, 2008, only ages 16-28 and U.S. citizens or legal permanent U.S. residents eligible to work full-time in U.S.). Dream Ticket does not include travel, meals, lodging or other expenses.

[more fun facts...]

Additional Information

Accessible to all.

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Related Links

Song list
Movie Clips
Park Map
The American Idol Experience FAQ (pdf)
The American Idol Experience Fast Facts (pdf)
Fun Facts
The Technology
The full attraction description
Reserve your audtion spot in advance online



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