Earlier today Disney announced that after almost 20 years, IllumiNations: Reflections of Earth would be closing in the Summer of 2019 to make way for a brand new nighttime spectacular on the World Showcase Lagoon.
This post isn’t to speculate about what is to come next but for me to just write a few thoughts down as to why this show is so special to me.
IllumiNations has been around since 1999 and has always been a part of my Walt Disney World experience. Though I have been visiting the resort since I was just 3 years old, I was 8 when the show debuted and the show itself helped shape my love for Epcot from a young child to today at nearly 30 years old.
IllumiNations: Reflections of Earth really does showcase the spirit of what World Showcase and Epcot stands for and I think for me it is that more than anything that I will miss the most. Every trip I sit and watch the show and it makes me feel that humanity is perhaps capable of coming together and striving for something better than what we are doing right now.
I hope the new show, whatever that may be when it debuts in 2019, continues to have the impact that IllumiNations: Reflections of Earth has had on me and the thousands of others who have enjoyed the show over the years.
In the words of the incredible Jim Cummings:
We’re gathered here tonight, around the fire — as people of all lands have gathered for thousands and thousands of years before us — to share the light, and to share a story. An amazing story as old as time itself, but still being written. And though each of us has our own individual stories to tell, a true adventure emerges when we bring them all together as one. We hope you enjoy our story tonight: Reflections of Earth.
I would love to hear some of your memories of the show in the comments below and check out a dedicated poor reviews episode of the podcast coming in a few weeks.