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The stars came out for the grand opening of DHS's new "American Idol Experience" attraction

The stars came out for the grand opening of DHS's new "American Idol Experience" attraction

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You've heard of a red carpet event, right? Well, on Thursday night, I attended a blue carpet event.


Photo by Jeff Lange

I -- along with hundreds of WDW Guests (and a certain duck) -- stood along Hollywood Boulevard at Disney's Hollywood Studios ...


Photo by Jeff Lange

,... and watched as this musical motorcade rolled through. Dozens of "American Idol" vets turned out for Thursday night's event. Everyone from past winners like Ruben Studdard ...


Photo by Jeff Lange

... to audience favorites like Sanjaya Malakar.


Photo by Jeff Lange

The motorcade then let all of these performers out in front of the American Idol Experience theater.


Photo by Jeff Lange

Where there was time for one quick photo op with Disney's main mouse ...


Photo by Jeff Lange

... before everyone was then herded into the theater for that night's finale show.

Ah, but this wasn't just any finale show. Not with Disney Parks & Resort chairman Jay Rasulo there to welcome the crowd ...


Photo by Jeff Lange

... and really-for-real "AI" MC Ryan Seacrest there to host the proceedings. Not to mention "American Judge" Paula Abdul being on hand to offer guidance & encouragement for that night's contestants.


Photo by Jeff Lange

Of course, what would really probably intrigue fans of this Fox television show was what happened as part of the grand opening of this new DHS attraction. When -- for the first time ever -- all seven of the previous "American Idol" winners took to the stage at the same time. Where Kelly Clarkson, Ruben Studdard, Fantasia Barrino, Carrie Underwood, Taylor Hicks, Jordin Sparks and David Cook all received the brand-new official AI winner's trophy. Which is this silver commemorative award modeled to look like an old-style microphone.


Photo by Jeff Lange

The night's entertainment included solo performances by Cook & Underwood. Then these "American Idol" winners teamed up to perform Fleetwood Mac's "Go Your Own Way."


Photo by Jeff Lange

Then confetti rained down as Mark Ellis of Pensacola, FL. was named the winner of the Dream Ticket at Thursday's American Idol Experience show.


Photo by Jeff Lange

And after that, it was party time ! As that night's winner -- as well as all of the Guests that the Walt Disney World Resort had invited to the grand opening of this new DHS attraction -- moved on over to Sunset Boulevard for the American Idol Experience premiere party.


Photo by Jeff Lange

Where David Cook & Carrie Underwood then blew off some steam by experiencing one of this theme park's signature attractions, the Rock N Roller Coaster Starring Areosmith.


Photo by Jeff Lange

All in all, it was a great evening. With Disney really pulling out the stops in order to give the "American Idol Experience" a proper launch. Be sure and check out this new DHS attraction the next time you visit that WDW theme park.

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  • Seems like a lot of effort on Disney's part to base an attraction on a show that has already peaked in popularity.

  • Thanks for the pictures!  I wish I could have been there!

  • Looks like a great night.  Are they going to show highlights of this on this season of American Idol?

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