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Cast Members Discuss Voyage of the Little Mermaid in the Miscellaneous Disney forums; I have a question for any of the cast members who have worked as the puppeteers for the show, "Voyage of the Little Mermaid." I know that y'all are dressed ...
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    WDWFan08's Avatar
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    Question Voyage of the Little Mermaid

    I have a question for any of the cast members who have worked as the puppeteers for the show, "Voyage of the Little Mermaid." I know that y'all are dressed up in black to conceal yourselves under the black or special lighting so only the puppets will be visible. I was watching a clip of the show, and noticed how Flounder can do crazy little tricks, yet, you do not see where he is being operated. How is he being controlled? I can figure out most of the other puppets, but Flounder is the one I'm really curious about because he can spin in both directions. Anyway, if any of you know how that is done, please let me know. I've just been so fascinated by it. Thanks a bunch!
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    That is an awesome question - I have wondered about that show as well.
    I really hope someone who knows will reply to this. Sorry that I cannot help you.


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    I have a confession.....I never knew how it was done but last time I went the magic was RUINED!!!! Some jerk took like 5 flash pics and you could see everyone running around. I only saw one guy with flander so I think hes on a stick that spins both ways. But I guess if no one answers you and you REALLY want to know you can pull a jerk and take 10 flash pics.

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    He took flash pictures?!? What a jerkface. He doesn't follow the rules very well, either since they do say, "NO FLASH PHOTOGRAPHY!" Geez. I wonder what was going through the performers' minds when they saw that flash go off. If I was a CM, I'd threaten to confiscate his camera until the end of the day. Geez. That's not cool. I don't think it would ruin the magic, I've just been so curious how it's all been done. But thanks for telling me!

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    member though I'm not 100% sure so make sure to keep asking

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    That "no flash photography" rule is NOT just in place for the sake of preserving the magic, but also for the safety of the performers. As a pilot, I have been educated to great lengths on such things as the inner workings of the human eye, including the fact that it takes about 30 minutes in the absence of any white light in order for your eyes to fully adapt into what many people call your "night" vision. During extended periods of low light, your pupils dilate, cone-shaped receptors in the back of your eye become ineffective (promoting off-center viewing), rod-shaped receptors are relied upon solely, and also begin to produce a chemical called rhodopsin that helps you see in the dark.

    If you've ever gotten up out of your bed in the middle of the night to go to the kitchen for a glass of water, you know that you have been able to navigate your darkened bedroom without a problem, because you can see moderately well despite there being very little light in the room. But once you get out into the kitchen a flip on the light switch... AHHHHH, THE BURNING!!! It hurts, doesn't it? That's because the chemical rhodopsin is being destroyed by the presence of the white light (white light contains all colors in the visible spectrum: red, orange, yellow, green, blue, indigo, and violet - all all combinations thereof), and your cone receptors are in effect being forced to suddenly snap back into action, resulting in the little blind spots you sometimes see ("stars"). If you've ever paid close attention to anyone whose profession requires that they spend extended periods in darkness, you may notice that they probably own a flashlight with a red lens filter on it, casting a softer red light instead of a bright white beam. Military flashlights are very well known for having this feature. This is because red is the color on the lowest end of the visible spectrum, doing the least amount of damage to ones night vision, while still permitting them to illuminate what they need to look at.

    I'm willing to bet that because these puppeteers perform show after show in nearly pitch-black conditions, that they get prepared to go on stage in a room separate from the rest of the cast, one with either zero visible white light, or at least as little as possible. They are probably in there for a full 30 minutes or more before going on stage, so that once they get up there in front of the guests, they can see fairly well, while you the guest having just come in from bright, sunny Florida outside, see only black. Now if Moron Max in the third row starts snapping flash photographs, think of the startling and potentially painful and disorienting situation that may cause for the performers! Pain, confusion, loss of concentration, momentary blindness, as well as a reduced visibility and "stars" for the rest of the show... that rule does not exist solely for the preservation of the Disney magic!!!
    Last edited by MainStreet, USA; 02-02-2008 at 04:34 PM. Reason: Fixed some of my awful spelling from so long ago...
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    Okay, if you really want the magic spoiled, I was a performer and a tech in that show for about 4 years...PM me and I can explain a bit how the show works. Since kids sometimes read these boards, I don't want to post the info.

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    Wow, all these rule breakers-baugh, they just don't think the rules apply to them, after all, they paid for a ticket-don't they own the park at that point? (kidding, that kind of stuff really bugs me off)
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    People do stupid stuff and hardly follow any rules most of the times, unfortunately. I used to be a scareactor at Universal's Halloween Horror Nights a few years back, and this is an event that takes place at night with many dark places for us to lurk around and hide and scare the living bejeebus outta you, and they do have the rule of "no flash pictures or video" because of the same reason Don mentioned above (I swear he's Bill Nye in hiding.) Anyways, I haven't worked HHN ever since because of all the dangers of dealing with idiot people who don't know how to behave themselves, some people bring in disposable cameras just to snap pictures right in front of the scareactor's face on purpose, can you imagine the nerve of these people? Geez, and I thought it was bad enough that some of these people were using our bushes to take care of their business when a restroom is 20 feet away and I'm about 2 feet away from this happening. I could go on but I'll stop for now before this turns into an angry rant

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    MainStreet, USA's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by albino_pygmy View Post
    (I swear he's Bill Nye in hiding.)
    Aww man, you found me out! I was just coming by to see if I could borrow a clothespin, a candle, and some aluminum foil for an experiment I'm doing.

    I have to laugh though, because my girlfriend refuses to admit that my degree in AERONAUTICAL SCIENCE actually has anything at all to do with science. I keep telling her "It's a physical science... like physics! Physics is definitely a science!" But I guess to her, if you aren't a chemist wearing a white lab coat, you are in no way a scientist.
    -Don-
    Your heart can just take wing,
    You can live out all your dreams...
    ...it's time to Remember the Magic!
    Yo Ho, Yo Ho, A Pilot's Life for Me...

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    albino_pygmy's Avatar
    albino_pygmy is offline The voice of the Jungle
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    Quote Originally Posted by MainStreet, USA View Post
    Aww man, you found me out! I was just coming by to see if I could borrow a clothespin, a candle, and some aluminum foil for an experiment I'm doing.

    I have to laugh though, because my girlfriend refuses to admit that my degree in AERONAUTICAL SCIENCE actually has anything at all to do with science. I keep telling her "It's a physical science... like physics! Physics is definitely a science!" But I guess to her, if you aren't a chemist wearing a white lab coat, you are in no way a scientist.
    She probably thinks you're McGuyver if you're asking for clothespins, candles, paper clips and rubber bands.

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    I have always wondered what posses people to take pictures where they have been asked not to - even when it's explained that the safety of the performers are at risk - like at Cirque. I've had a group of people talk during the entire performance of COP, but I'll stop before I feel the need to pull out my soapbox.
    Thanks for the great science lesson on light and vision. I always knew McGuyver was still alive and well.
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