Disney’s Beauty & the Beast Review

Disclosure: Olympia Entertainment provided me with 3 tickets for Disney’s Beauty & the Beast Detroit for a review and 4 tickets to giveaway to one of my readers. All opinions are my own.

Disney’s Beauty & the Beast is playing at the Fox Theatre from Friday, May 20th through Sunday, May 22nd, 2016. We attended the opening night of the show and we loved it! I am so glad that I jumped at the opportunity to promote the performance in exchange for tickets. The show was amazing. The sets were quite impressive especially considering that this is a traveling production that is only in Detroit for 3 days.

beauty-and-the-beast-fox-theatre

About Disney’s Beauty & the Beast

Disney’s Beauty & the Beast, an award-winning worldwide smash hit Broadway musical, is based on the 1991 Disney Animated movie of the same name. The musical features many of the popular songs from the movie with music by Alan Menken and lyrics by the late Howard Ashman. Additional songs for the musical feature music by Alan Menken and lyrics by Tim Rice. The play book is written by Linda Woolverton.

Olympia Entertainment has provided the following description:


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Disney’s Beauty & the Beast is the classic story of Belle, a young woman in a provincial town, and the Beast, who is really a young prince trapped in a spell placed by an enchantress. If the Beast can learn to love and be loved, the curse will end and he will be transformed to his former self. But time is running out. If the Beast does not learn his lesson soon, he and his household will be doomed for all eternity.

Check out this video promoting the show:


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Disney’s Beauty & the Beast Logistical Challenges

There were definitely some logistical challenges last night with attending the performance, but everything came together nicely for us. Presumably these challenges are what led to a large number of late arriving theater goers. People were still arriving to be seated at 8p for a 7:30p start time. The biggest issue is that the Detroit Tigers are playing at home this weekend. With Fox Theatre across the street from Comerica Park (and a performance next door at the Fillmore as well), there were so many people arriving in the area that traffic, parking, and dining all posed challenges. 

Baseball Games

The Detroit Tigers game was at 7:10p last night. Since Disney’s Beauty & the Beast had a 7:30p start time, the overlap was considerable. The good news is Saturday’s baseball game is at 4p. The 2p show should have little issue with the game since it will start just as the early arrivals begin to arrive. The show will end after the game starts and most people have already arrived. The 7:30p show will be a little more interesting as the game will likely end about the time people arrive for the theater. Personally, I would plan on an early arrival before the game ends and have dinner nearby. The 1p Sunday matinee will be similar to last night with a 1:08 game time. I would make plans to have an early lunch in the area to give yourself plenty of time to park. My philosophy is I can always eat faster (or get takeout), but I can’t make traffic go any faster.

Comerica Park before Disney's Beauty & the Beast

Traffic

Being Friday afternoon we met traffic crossing Ann Arbor, and quite a bit of traffic on I-94 east of the airport due to a couple of accidents. Once we passed the accident (near M-39), we did not hit any traffic until I-75 right before the stadium. We saw the traffic ahead on I-75 at the M-10 split and opted to use M-10. It was a little more city driving, but there was very little traffic. While weekend traffic will likely be better, there was construction (2 lanes closed, 1 lane open in both directions) on I-94 between Rawsonville and Textile Rd when we returned at 10:30p. The closure will happen nightly (through May 26). The road did backup during the merge to 1 lane.  

Parking

We approached the Fox Theatre from M-10 and parked in a small ground lot between the Fox Theatre and the Fillmore. The lot is exclusively for Fox Theatre patrons and was only $15 – fairly reasonable for event parking compared to what I saw for other lots. After the show, we were very lucky that my friend spotted the side exit from the Fox Theatre which let us out right near our car. We were one of the first cars to pull out of the lot. It sounded like the post-game fireworks were going on at Comerica and we met very little traffic. Overall, the parking and downtown traffic were one of our better experiences leaving a downtown event.

Dinner

Knowing about the baseball game, we made plans to leave Ann Arbor early and arrive in time for dinner. My initial thought was Hockeytown, but with the traffic challenges we encountered, that wasn’t possible. With the accidents that we encountered our trip took longer than expected, so we were a little short on dinner time. The friend who accompanied us suggested the Bucharest Grill where her family has eaten previously. The restaurant has since closed their location on Park Street and it’s other locations are not a short walk from the Fox Theatre. GoGos Hawaiian Street Food opened in the same location, so we decided to try it out. They offer takeout or you can dine in at The Park Bar which shares a building. We opted to dine in. My daughter and I shared a Beef Teriyaki Plate that included rice, green salad, and macaroni salad. We all enjoyed our food and I would definitely suggest GoGos again if I needed a quick meal in the theater/stadium area.

GoGos & Park Bar Detroit

Disney’s Beauty & the Beast Detroit Performances

Disney’s Beauty & the Beast will be at Detroit’s Fox Theatre (2301 Woodward Ave) from Friday, May 20 through Sunday, May 22. There will be a total of 6 performances as listed below:

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When considering tickets for your family, be warned that the show ran 2.5 hours. The 7:30p show ended around 10p. If you have young children, the evening show is probably not the best choice for them. I saw several families leaving early and the young kids behind us definitely were struggling after intermission and ended up leaving after a few scenes. Even my 10 year old was done by the end and fell asleep on the way home (and she’s usually up late on Friday & Saturday). I would recommend a minimum age of 5 for Disney’s Beauty & the Beast and a minimum age of 7 for the evening show.

Fox Theatre

The Fox Theater is a historic theatre that features tons of detail work. Unfortunately, we were asked not to take any pictures inside the seating area and the lobby areas were too crowded to allow for good pictures. If you have never been to Fox Theatre, I definitely recommend attending at least one show there. The theatre is quite impressive.

We sat near the back of the F1 section (row KK) on the main floor (far left, but on the inner aisle side) with my daughter in the aisle seat. We found that the angle of our seats and the sections was perfect to see around the people in front of us. With an aisle seat, my daughter was able to see with no problems. Even I didn’t have any problems with my view. I was able to see right between the people in the row in front of me and have a great view of the stage. 

The bathroom lines were quite long right before the show and at intermission. While they moved quickly, it may be a better choice to use the restroom before arriving (such as at your dinner restaurant). Concessions including candy, popcorn, beverages, and adult beverages were available in the lobby. The presence of the stands does make it a bit hard to move through the lobby, but it was nice to get a snack at intermission.

Tickets for Disney’s Beauty & the Beast

Tickets for Disney’s Beauty & the Beast Detroit shows start at $37.50 for general admission. Tickets can be purchased online at Disney’s Beauty & the Beast or by phone at 1-800-745-3000. Limited tickets are available for the remaining shows 

Disney's Beauty & the Beast Detroit - Jillian Butterfield as Belle and Ryan Everett Wood as the Beast - Photo by Matthew Murphy

Photo by Matthew Murphy – Used with Permission

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Anna Mae

Anna Mae owns & operates Ann Arbor with Kids, a website dedicated to Family Activities in Ann Arbor. My husband and I moved to Ann Arbor in 2003 and our daughter joined the family in 2006.

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