News Goodbye to The Grand Floridian Society Orchestra

Lilofan

Well-Known Member
He's not. D'Amaro likely did decide to dump the orchestra (or more likely someone under D'Amaro and then he approved it, although it's certainly possible they weren't considered a big enough item for it to even come across his desk). But it's not as though he just randomly decided to fire them out of the blue; I'm sure he was given an order by Chapek to cut a certain percentage of spending in certain areas and that was one of the easiest things to eliminate. The same is true for when Chapek was head of P&R -- although he was a disaster, I don't think he was some sort of cartoon villain intentionally trying to eliminate as much as possible. Most of it was likely mandated. Not the specific cuts themselves, but the amount of money that needed to be cut from the budget.
It's incredible that these execs that some think have done poorly move in the organization into higher level positions. The board surely must like them.
 

wannabeBelle

Well-Known Member
If you’re managing by spreadsheet, need to cut x% off an entertainment budget, and you hit ‘sort by’... cutting the orchestra looks like a perfectly rational decision. In fact, it may look like the only rational decision.

The problem here is the overwhelming tendency of Disney to manage by spreadsheet in the last 20 years. Now, when it’s crisis mode, there’s no institutional ability to manage any other way. Almost like a finance guy was running the company, not a creative....
Absolutely so. The only problem is that value definitely counts too. For example yes you can get a cheeseburger from McDonalds or Burger King for less than you are paying for a filet mignon steak, however the value of the latter is greater than the former. Especially when you are charging filet mignon prices for said cheeseburger. Marie
 

KBLovesDisney

Well-Known Member
Take out the Heart and Soul of the song and all you've got is someone plucking at the keys.

Disney is losing (or has mostly lost) its soul
 

bunnm09

Member
Man, just saw that YeeHaa Bob at Riverside got laid off too. After 23 years playing there. I really hope he’s able to return when Port Orleans reopens, he had made so many great memories for us and is why we stay at Port
 

larryz

Completely Saponificated
Premium Member
Uh....if the Chairman of Parks and Resorts has to "justify" the cost of a rounding error atmosphere entertainment group in a single hotel at a single resort to the CEO and the Executive Chairman of the Company then his title is a complete joke and he really is an assistant manager.

Not sure why this concept is controversial. The Chairman of the P&R owns the decisions in the P&R - all of them. Good, bad, and indifferent. It's astonishing how people will twist themselves into logic pretzels to blame one person and protect another all because of their fan perceptions.
Yeah, but half-a-million here and half-a-million there, pretty soon you're talking about real money...
 

wannabeBelle

Well-Known Member
If they were laid off as part of this action then I can understand that - it means that it's not a permanent removal but purely a funding issue. Though I think they're going to be hard pressed to get people back into the GF at GF prices without them.
Disney has a history over the past few years of removing entertainment and either replacing it with something inferior ( Im looking at you lumberjacks!!) or sometimes not replacing it at all. Off Kilter and a few other acts were removed 6 years ago, replaced with the Lumberjacks, which didnt go well and they have been having different acts over there since. Some I have liked a lot (Alberta Bound!!) others not so much. Mulch, Sweat & Shears was removed 5 years ago and never replaced. This was not an isolated incident for sure. Im sure Covid didnt help but this pattern of eliminating entertainment was happening way before our current difficulties. Marie
 

Cedwards38

New Member
Taken from their facebook page

It’s hard to find the words but, sadly, our days at the Grand Floridian are over. In fact, as of Oct 3, 2020, our days at WDW will come to an end as well.
The company brought us out of furlough, changed our name to “The Disney Society Orchestra,” closed us out of the GF to play a show of Disney themed show tunes at the Theater of the Stars in Hollywood Studios. We’ve been playing 9 shows a day, 7 days a week since Aug 2nd. The music is a far cry from the closely knit harmonies & sounds we became known for at the GF but. the guys are real pros and they sound great!
Well... Two weeks ago we got notice that the theater is going dark and our last day of work will be Saturday, Oct 3, 2020. As we all know, these are very uncertain times and can’t say what will happen from one day to the next.
So after 32 years of playing together and playing music we love... we’re done. We are so thankful for the opportunity to play in a beautiful setting for the hotel guests and friends we have met & made over the years. We’ll never forget you and how wonderful you’ve made us feel. We will miss you!
Thank you-thank you- thank you!
This is heart breaking news.
 

bjebberger

New Member
Since 1985 we have visited WDW over 30 times. For years the memories we created were an amazing part of our family. We often talked about our trips, looked at the pictures and all talked about our favorite memory of those visits. I guess we’ll always have those memories. WDW was always everthing it claimed to be. A truly magical place.
Going with our children became going with our grandchildren. With each passing visit the magic became less and less until it was gone. Why? The corporate greed became more evident with each visit. It became evident with each visit that it was less about the visitors spending their hard earned money and more about how WDW could maximize the ROI. Traditional activities that each visit was planned around slowly fell off the plan.
While we tried very hard to hang on to what WDW had been it became impossible to do because the magic was gone.
Our honest reflection became, it was no longer worth our investment financially or emotionally. Their loyalty to us no longer matched our loyalty to them. We became a number without personal identity in their eyes.
We will always remember fondly our incredible memories of what WDW formerly was and it’s magic. But WDW is no longer that magical place where great memories are created. They have lost their way.
 

Dagmar

New Member
Since 1985 we have visited WDW over 30 times. For years the memories we created were an amazing part of our family. We often talked about our trips, looked at the pictures and all talked about our favorite memory of those visits. I guess we’ll always have those memories. WDW was always everthing it claimed to be. A truly magical place.
Going with our children became going with our grandchildren. With each passing visit the magic became less and less until it was gone. Why? The corporate greed became more evident with each visit. It became evident with each visit that it was less about the visitors spending their hard earned money and more about how WDW could maximize the ROI. Traditional activities that each visit was planned around slowly fell off the plan.
While we tried very hard to hang on to what WDW had been it became impossible to do because the magic was gone.
Our honest reflection became, it was no longer worth our investment financially or emotionally. Their loyalty to us no longer matched our loyalty to them. We became a number without personal identity in their eyes.
We will always remember fondly our incredible memories of what WDW formerly was and it’s magic. But WDW is no longer that magical place where great memories are created. They have

Well said! I'm sure covid will be used as the reason, but this has been going on for a very long time. Not just with dwindling live entertainment, you only have to look at the shrinking garden and topiary displays to know that if it was an extra special touch that didn't generate revenue, it was sure to go extinct, and unfortunately this will just hasten the decline. I can understand some changes, maybe scaling back at the TTC was acceptable as most people arrive to the MK by bus, but wow, those trimmed hedges, endless flowers, and topiary were something special! I can also look beyond the abomination that the hub has become because they need to accommodate so many visitors, but, the swan topiary and swooping flower beds were pure magic. Soon, the Victoria Gardens section in Canada will just be a lawn with a walkway. People will often defend change by saying that Walt Disney embraced change and said that the park would never be complete. Well, Walt Disney also wanted to build something that wasn't an amusement park. Well, guess what folks, it's now an amusement park.
 

ParkerLoLs

Well-Known Member
Well said! I'm sure covid will be used as the reason, but this has been going on for a very long time. Not just with dwindling live entertainment, you only have to look at the shrinking garden and topiary displays to know that if it was an extra special touch that didn't generate revenue, it was sure to go extinct, and unfortunately this will just hasten the decline. I can understand some changes, maybe scaling back at the TTC was acceptable as most people arrive to the MK by bus, but wow, those trimmed hedges, endless flowers, and topiary were something special! I can also look beyond the abomination that the hub has become because they need to accommodate so many visitors, but, the swan topiary and swooping flower beds were pure magic. Soon, the Victoria Gardens section in Canada will just be a lawn with a walkway. People will often defend change by saying that Walt Disney embraced change and said that the park would never be complete. Well, Walt Disney also wanted to build something that wasn't an amusement park. Well, guess what folks, it's now an amusement park.

Well said by you both!
 

TrainChasers

Well-Known Member
You didn’t have to enter the park to get into the Grand a Floridian yo year the orchestra.
First of all... I know that was an innocent spelling error but I really want to start calling the resort “the Grand A Floridian” - in fact I probably will from here on out. Haha.

And my comment that you quoted was directed at the orchestras current home in the Studios. To be honest, the regular beauty and the beast show should have a live orchestra anyways. I mean Dollywood has a live band for their Christmas shows, you would think Disney could afford it.
 

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