Fantastic Trip To Disneyland Paris.
The band have just returned from a fantastic three day trip to Disneyland Paris, during which the band led the Disney Parade in front of thousands of people. The trip was originally scheduled for autumn 2020 as part of the band’s 20th anniversary celebrations, but had to be delayed due to COVID. COVID then intervened again in 2021! As a result of the delay, we had a resubmit an audition video to the Disney team earlier this year to secure permission to perform in their parade, which the band passed with flying colours. On Thursday 27 October, at 6:30am (!) the band gathered in Claygate, boarding our coach to Paris. The band then spent Friday and Saturday in the Disney Parks, enjoying the rides and soaking up the amazing atmosphere. The highlight of the trip was, of course, performing in the main Disney Parade. Disneyland Paris was full to capacity and the parade route, which winds its way through the Disneyland park, was packed four or five people deep. In preparing for the parade, the band had to go “back-stage”, into the area of the park where customers do not get to go. Whilst waiting backstage for the parade to begin, Captain Hook came along (he seemed desperate to have a go at conducting the band!), as did Chip ‘n Dale who gave us a huge wave and a thumbs up for encouragement. Then the parade began. Over the loud speakers, across the Disney Park, we heard … “Disney is proud to welcome the 1st Claygate Scout and Guide Band from the United Kingdom”. The band’s performance on the day was first class. We looked great as everyone’s uniform was in tip-top condition and the band’s marching was excellent…..and we sounded great too. Everyone rose to the occasion and I hope every single member of the band will feel proud of their contribution to a brilliant performance. Of course, as well as ensuring a superb performance through the parade, there was lots of fun and enjoyment to be had too. Band members took full opportunity of all the rides (most were too scary for me!) and the Disney events across both of the Disneyland Paris parks. Here are a few of their comments, but they sum up the experiences of everyone: Leo - “I loved Disneyland, the rides, experience marching and having fun.” Anabel - “We all had such an amazing time both looking around the park, going on the rides and having the brilliant opportunity to perform in the parade.” Zoe - “Marching through Disney felt like a dream, everyone did so well.” Cleo – “A once in a lifetime opportunity.” Chris – “Proud to be part of a great team that gave the crowd a very impressive performance.” Zoe – “I loved hanging out with my friends.” And what did the Disney organiser say about the band … “You were phenomenal.” Thank you to everyone for making this such a great and memorable trip …. Every single band member played their part in making this a memorable trip. Everyone engaged positively throughout and it was a pleasure to be a part of the group. Well done to everyone – Scouting, and Claygate Scouts, can be proud of you all. And finally, a massive thank you to all the leaders on the trip. The success of the trip was down to your hard work and good humour throughout. Well done band! ROBIN …. a proud Band Leader (and, thanks to the generosity of a number of band members, now the proud owner of a pair of sparkly Disney ears…!)