Sunday, December 4, 2011

Disneyland Candlelight 2011 - Gary Sinise

This was our fourth year of going to Candlelight at Disneyland.  Ever since meeting Ruston and learning he sang at Candlelight, it's become a yearly tradition.

Welcome to Disneyland!  It's Christmastime!

And today we're getting to see the Candlelight Processional.  I'm sure they meant Saturday and Sunday the 3rd and 4th.

We were here for one thing only today.  Seeing Candlelight.  As soon as we got to the park, we checked out the main stage.  The area is open to walk in front of all until the last parade at 3:15pm when they clear everybody out and start setting up chairs.

We sat down right around 2pm.  We learned some of the people sitting right at the curb sat down around 11am.  Talk about dedication!

Excited for Candlelight!

As the sun goes down, the area really starts to get crowded.  All the chairs are set up and all the wheelchairs have filled in on the left.  In general, I think everything was organized pretty well this year.  The cast members had good communication letting everyone know where they were and weren't allowed to stand.  

Conductor Nancy Sulahian leading the orchestra as everyone walks in.

This year's narrator is Gary Sinise.

Disneyland always brings lots of high school choirs in to sing.  I wasn't counting, but there must have been 15 different choirs mentioned that were participating.

The trumpeters on the top of the railroad building are always a favorite.

The Disney cast choir that makes up the main tree.

And look!  There's Ruston!

The orchestra.

One of the featured soloist.  Does anyone know her name?  We've heard her for the last 4 years, but she's never mentioned by name.

Another soloist.  Again, anyone know his name?

The hand-bell choir.

Some close-ups on a few of the faces in the choir.

And there's Ruston again!

An amazing tenor singing Silent Night in Italian.  Just beautiful.

He then walked over to the conductor and they led the whole audience in Silent Night.

After the show was over, we caught a quick glimpse of Ruston as he was walking out.

We were cleared from the area so the next group could come in.  We headed right back down Main Street and got in line again.

Quite a line for the next show too.  Looking in front of us.

And behind us.  Lines are forming on both sides of Main Street with a walking path down the middle. 

After waiting for a bit, we were let back inside.  Instead of going back to stage left where we were for the first showing, we decided we'd try to get more centered on the stage.  We wouldn't get a good view of the trumpeters and a few other things, but we'd be able to see Gary Sinise better.

From here, we were able to see the choir as they walked in.

Much better views of Gary Sinise here.

The Sign Language interpreter.

Nancy Sulahian leading the choir.

Gary Sinise thanking the choir, conductors, orchestra, the sign language interpreter and the trumpeters.

This is a picture of mine from 2009, but I wanted to include it because it just shows the great view of everything.

Have a Merry Christmas and God Bless America.  

We all had a great time!

And then Ruston was able to come out and see us.

And then it was time to do some shopping.

In all, we had a great time.  We met and were able to talk to some great people while we were waiting around from 2pm-5pm.  I really do love that Disneyland still holds their Candlelight Processional out in the open right on Main Street.  We've been to Disney World and while it is good and all, Disneyland is definitely my favorite.  Gary Sinise did a fine job narrating and was a good public speaker.

Got a bit of an update.  I posted my photos on a few Disney forums.  Micechat and Mouseplanet both wanted to use my photos in their weekly updates.  Links are here and here.

Not only that, but Gary Sinise apparently saw the photos I took on Mouseplanet and tweeted the link to it.  Now over 3500 people have seen these photos.

I also learned that the first male soloist is named Robbie Banner.  He's a Dapper Dan who sings in the barbershop quartet at Disneyland on Main Street..
The second male soloist is named Drew Tablak and is also a Dapper Dan.
The female soloist's name is Heather, but no one knows where she's from, even though she's sung for the last 4 years.

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