Beauty and the Beast Live On Stage
Opened: November 22, 1991
Location: Sunset Boulevard
Extra Magic Hours: No
Type: Live Broadway-style theater show
Similar To: A smaller-scale Festival of the Lion King
Scary Factor: Very low. It’s a little iffy for Beast at one point.
When To Go: Like other theater shows, Beauty and the Beast is scheduled at certain times throughout the day. Although the theater it covered, it’s still outside. If it’s hot, you may want to watch when it’s cooler in the morning or evening. If weather isn’t a concern, then you’ll still have the best luck with either the first (usually around 11:30am) or last show of the day (usually around 5:45pm), crowd-wise.
Expect to Wait: If you want a good seat that isn’t in the sun then you’ll want to arrive about 30 minutes early. This show fills up faster than any of the other live shows at Hollywood Studios. You may be able to cut it closer for the first show or if the crowd level is particularly low.
Length: 25 minutes
What to Expect: Beauty and the Beast Live on Stage is a Broadway-style musical featuring characters, music, and scenes from Beauty and the Beast. The show follows the same story as Beauty and the Beast, only it’s condensed into the 25-minute show time and features six of the most popular songs. The sets are elaborate, the costumes are first-rate, and the acting is excellent as well. Anyone who enjoys musicals or enjoyed any of Disney’s other theater shows will certainly love this one as well. It’s one of the better live attractions at Walt Disney World.
Where to Sit: Like most older Disney live shows, seating is on long bleachers. I recommend sitting as close to the center as possible at least a third of the way up from the stage. This ensures that you can see the entire stage without a lot of head turning.
Exit: The exit is in the rear of the theater, in between the two raised bleacher sections in the back. If you’re looking for an easy exit, sit in the very back of the theater. It may be several minutes to exit if you’re seated closer to the front. I don’t recommend heading to the standby line of Rock ‘n’ Roller Coaster or Tower of Terror immediately after a show gets out unless you’re among the first people to exit. The entrances to both attractions are nearby and hundreds of people will be headed to both if the posted wait time is low.
Proof is in the Pudding: Beauty and the Beast Live on Stage is the longest running stage show at any Disney Theme Park.
Commentary: Beauty and the Beast Live on Stage would be more relaxing if the theater was indoors, but it is well-covered and shouldn’t get so hot that it’s unbearable. At 1,500 seats, the theater is also large enough to seat most of the visitors that want to watch the show, but people are turned away from nearly every performance so you’ll want to arrive early to guarantee a good seat. If you only have time for either Beauty and the Beast or Voyage of the Little Mermaid then I would go with whichever movie your group enjoyed more. The performance and acting at Beauty and the Beast is better, but Voyage of the Little Mermaid is air-conditioned and has more comfortable seating. The Little Mermaid is also a little scarier than Beauty and the Beast, so take that into consideration if you have little ones that are easily frightened.