Last week, Walt Disney World President Jeff Vahle revealed the name for EPCOT’s next nighttime spectacular: Luminous – The Symphony of Us. In previous updates, Disney suggested the show would premiere sometime around early October as part of the Disney 100 celebration. Now, the show officially premieres on December 5th, 2023. So, what caused this large delay?
Broken in a story on Monday by WDW News Today, Disney executives disliked the show’s soundtrack composed by Pinar Toprak.
Typically, when a new fireworks show is in development, the composer creates an in-computer version of their score. Then, project supervisors and Disney executives critique this easily-tweaked digital score until it meets their final approval. Once approval is obtained, the score is recorded by one of several prestigious symphony orchestras. This real-life recording session is extremely expensive for Disney, often costing hundreds of thousands of dollars for a single take or two.
According to sources of Mickey Views, the score for Luminous was approved and subsequently recorded by the orchestra. Upon further review, the executives decided they wanted to throw it out.
Allegedly, Disney executives have now ordered over 70% of the score be re-composed and re-performed. This change pushed back the premiere of Luminous, and pushed the music budget in excess of $1.5M. This staggering figure for audio alone does not factor in the costs of show infrastructure, personnel costs, materials costs, or promotion.
Here’s to hoping the executives put their foot down for good reason, and the final soundtrack satisfies fans when Luminous premieres on December 5th, 2023.