October 12th, 2008 5:57 PM by Karyn Smith
Walking With Dinosaurs, a ‘live’ experience, stops at the Amway Arena in NovemberBy Peter CovinoEntertainment EditorIt has taken more than 65 million years, but dinosaurs are finally making their comeback.
The one-of-a-kind experience Walking With Dinosaurs, based on the BBC series, comes to the Amway Arena, Nov. 12-Nov. 16. Officials from the arena, and The Creature Production Company, which is producing the “live” show, presented a sneak preview Wednesday at the Orlando Science Center. “This is a real life trip back in time,” said the show’s resident director Cameron Wenn, via satellite transmission.Years in the making, Walking With Dinosaurs required research for some brand new technology, mixed with classic puppetry to create dinos weighing as much as six tons and nearly touching the upper reaches of arenas at 36-feet tall.Some of the effects can be seen on the BBC series Walking with Dinosaurs, Wenn said, but because this is a live and personal experience new technology was required, including a more realistic skin covering.These dinosaurs, 15 in all, walk and roar, across a stage, that in this case will be the Amway Arena. The 20 million production, which debuted in Australia, is now making it way around the country, with stops in Miami and Orlando in November.The dino show is a tale of sorts, featuring an actor paleontologist who guides visitors on a history of the dinosaur going back more than 160 million years.The 90-minute show cost $20 million to produce.By most accounts, the show’s heart-stopping mo-ment is when a 31-foot long Plateosaurus rumbles out onto the stage to protect her nest of young from a Liliensternus looking for an easy meal.Walking With Dinosaurs is performed in two acts with an intermission.The arena will be laid out with a proscenium stage at one end and the entire arena floor is the performing surface. The stage itself changes appearance through the show, with the splitting of the earth’s continents, the transition from arid dessert to lush green prairies. Oceans form, volcanoes erupt and a forest catches fire, all leading up to the impact of the massive comet that brought about the extinction of the dinosaur.Three master puppeteers operate each one of the dinosaurs, Wenn said.The show has had sold out performances world wide and generated more than $50 million in ticket sales thus far.Walking With Dinosaurs — The Live Experience will be at the Amway Arena for eight performances. Tickets, priced at $27.50-$65 are on sale now. Tickets can be purchased by calling 407-839-3900, online at Ticketmaster.com or at the Amway Arena box office. Group discounts are available. Call 407-849-2014 or visit OrlandoVenues.net.