1st WDW Carousel Of Progress

I listened to a live recording of the Carousel Of Progress, circa 1980 or therabouts today and for the first time in conscious memory was able to hear the original Act IV closing of the show that was replaced in 1981 by the version we're more familiar with (and released on the WDW Forever CDs). Although almost all of the prologue narration is missing I could already tell it was different. Acts I, II and III were not changed in the entire run of the show, while the "Now Is The Time" family vocal of Act IV was the same used throughout the entire run. The big difference though was the different dialogue and cast voices in Act IV (aside from Andrew Duggan), where there was a much bigger stress on promoting the GE message of electricity as progress than in later years. The tone in fact was a lot more reminiscent of the original World's Fair and Disneyland version of the show.

Big surprise #2 was a female vocal group disco version of "Now Is The Time" for the Exit Music. It reeks of the 70s in the same way the exit music for "America Sings" does.

At any rate it was nice to discover more nuances in the audio/musical history of this great Disney attraction.
That 70's finale chorus IS on the WDW FOREVER tracks....you just can't hear it very well over the family and the fireworks. Depending on where one sat in the theater certain tarcks could be heard beter. I always liked that finale chorus.....wish it had been released as an isolted track.

Also I liked how the daughter plays the "Best Time" song thru out the finale secene.almost as if she's composing it. And the granfather has a total differnt voice as they talk about watching the football game on TV instead of being in the huge crowds at the stadium.

But eitherway.all versions of WDW Carousel of Progress during the "Best Time" era used an exit band march and the end....this was left off completly from the WDW Forvever tracks.........YET: when you played the sample of the last act you heard the exit march!!!!........but never printed on the disc!!! I don't know anyone who actually got this track of music and the spiel " Now Please gather your belongs and exit thru the doors in which you came.....and have a happy new day!" ..this also played on the sample as the exit march played.

Anyway, it's a bit of lost music to us now.......maybe when WDW has it's 50th!!

Hopefully sooner than the 50th! Thanks for the clarifications. In fact all the Act IV voices except for Andrew Duggan were totally redone, with James Gregory of Barney Miller doing Grandpa in the 80s version and Dena Dietrich as Grandma (she did the mother on "Horizons" as well)


I hope when you said...

"It reeks of the 70s in the same way the exit music for "America Sings" does."

... that you meant that in a good way!

That's the only exit music I have ever hung around till the end to hear.

I still
Actually, the *first* version of CoP at WDW was (primarily) the original 1964 World's Fair version, with some minor changes and a bit of updating in the last act, with the original Rex Allen dialog and narration, and the "Great, Big, Beautiful Tomorrow" theme song and original score. The "Now is the Time" is the verson from the 80s to about 1994, after GE dropped sponsorship of the show. The version of the show that was on the Forever discs is from the WDW version which played from about '73 to '80. I was fortunate enough to be able to see the original in 1978, and even have portions of it on Super-8 sound home movies.

Sorry, but that is not correct. "Now Is The Time" was the ONLY version that played at WDW until 1993. The first version of "Now Is The Time" was identical in the first three Acts from 1975-93, with a new Act IV recorded in 1981 that played to 1993. Andrew Duggan was the narrator.

The World's Fair version played with minor modification at Disneyland, not WDW from 1967-73. "Great Big Beautiful Tomorrow" was never heard at WDW's COP until 1994 in the current version.


All I can say is I love hearing Best Time Of Your Life from the new area loop while on the TTA.
Okay, I'm off by a couple of years, at least according to CarouselofProgress.com:

""Great Big Beautiful Tomorrow," which made its debut along with the Carousel at the 64-65 World's Fair in New York, portrayed exactly the same idea as that of the show - "Tomorrow is just a dream away." As much as Walt loved this song, a new Sherman Bros. theme was introduced in 1978, after the COP's move to Walt Disney World. "Best Time of Your Life" became an instant favorite among guests at the Magic Kingdom, and ran up until 1994 when the original song was put back in place."

On the other hand, they contradict themselves in the "history" section:

" It remained there until the early 70's, when it was closed and moved to Walt Disney World in Florida, being replaced at Disneyland by America Sings.? The theme song that had been used since the opening at the fair, "Great Big, Beautiful Tomorrow," was dropped during the transition, and changed to "Now is the Time."? A major change was made in 1992 when G.E. removed its sponsorship of the attraction."

Both statements cannot be correct, and I can only remember the Rex Allen version. Somehow I "knew" the GBBT theme the instant I heard the DLF tracks, but when I heard the "Now is the Time" theme, it was totally unfamiliar to me. Now I'll have to dig up the old home movie (and the projector - hope it still works!) and see what's there... I haven't watched it in over 20 years, and it's nearly two hours long...

CarouselOfProgress.com simply errs in terms of giving the wrong year for when COP moved to WDW. Change "1978" to "1975" and the rest fits in with the correct history of the ride, which was GBBT and a modified World's Fair track at DL from 67-73 and "Now Is The Time" starting with the move to WDW in 75.