View 154: Disney’s Human Element

Walt Disney World is filled with technological and architectural wonders from Cinderella Castle to the Tree of Life.  Yet, without the thousands of cast members, the parks would be cold and barren.  A photographer and blogger who lives near the Magic (as Disney fan(antic)s like to call it) documents what he calls the Human Element in the Disney parks.  On my last trip, I looked for such opportunities to do the same.

The Tam Tams are a group from West Africa which have been entertaining guests at Disney’s Animal Kingdom for years and include guests in many of their dance routines.

A member of Tam Tams, a West African rhythms and dance group, lead Walt Disney World guests in a dance.

A member of Tam Tams, a West African rhythms and dance group, lead Walt Disney World guests in a dance. Many live shows at Disney involve audience participation as part of the fun. Nikon D700/28-300VR, 1/250s, f/9, ISO 640, EV +0.3, 180mm focal length.

In this scene from the Festival of the Lion King live stage show, these two arial acrobats perform to the song Can You Feel the Love Tonight from the Disney animated feature. They are showing the joy in their performance as they look at each other.

Flying for Love during the Festival of the Lion King stage show in Disney's Animal Kingdom.

Flying for Love during the Festival of the Lion King stage show in Disney's Animal Kingdom. Nikon D700/28-300VR, 1/100s, f/5.6, ISO 6400, EV -0.3, 125mm focal length.

Keeping with the theme of human emotion, these two “cast members” are displaying a  human element, tenderness. 🙂

A pari of Asian tigers in Disney's Animal Kingdom share a tender moment.

A pari of Asian tigers in Disney's Animal Kingdom share a tender moment. Nikon D700/28-300VR, 1/400s, f/10, ISO 200, EV 0, 300mm focal length.

Of course, you do not need to go to Walt Disney World to photograph the human element.  It is all around us.

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14 Responses to View 154: Disney’s Human Element

  1. burstmode says:

    Love the two Bengals in the bottom photo. I have my reservations for Disney in late July…cannot go before swim season is over.

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  2. montucky says:

    Very nice, Scott. You captured an attitude!

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  3. Karma says:

    I do love the tiger shot, but the people are what make it tick. I’ve known two young adults who’ve gone to Disney recently – one just returned and one there now- for internships. They aren’t the fabulous performers, but hard workers indeed. I’ve wondered about one of those “around the corner” attachments for the camera since I don’t have the chutzpah to capture the “human element” of strangers easily. Had any experience with those?

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    • My daughter did an internship last Fall. The CMs have fun making magic for guests. I have fun engaging the CMs from dining servers to turnstile workers. A lot are away from home and enjoy talking with guests.

      There’s no need to spy, Karma. Just ask (I know I am not very good at doing that myself. At Disney it’s easy as a lot of people are not paying attention.) In the top photo above, the guests were engaging in a public display. A lot of people were taking photos of the dancing.

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  4. All very beautiful shots, I love the moments you captured here.

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  5. kanniduba says:

    Very nice shots Scott.
    The Magic wouldn’t be Magic without the human element. From the performers whose talent is unmatched, to the hotel maids who create magnificent art with cloths and towels, they are spectacular.

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  6. Nye says:

    Scott, I can’t wait to get there. We have a reservation on the 24th and will be there for Christmas, I guess they’ll have a parade on Christmas day. Lee is excited. 🙂

    Great shot on the arial acrobats and that lady in the background had her hand up, looks like she is lifting that person in midair.

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    • Be prepared to get to the Magic Kingdom early on Christmas Day. It will be very busy so don’t try to do it all. Be patient and soak in the holiday atmosphere. The parade you see on TV each year has already been filmed but I am sure you’ll see some special holiday floats in the 3 o’clock parade. If you have any questions, drop me an email.

      Someone else pointed that out to me. I didn’t see it as I was trying to get the performers right.

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  7. milkayphoto says:

    GREAT shots, Scott! I never tire of the Lion King show. The tiger image is magical!

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