Mickey, Minnie, Donald…do these names say something to you? Do you know them? Are they part of your childhood? For me they represent a great collection of memories. They are not only Disneyland characters, but also friends. You are probably thinking I’m foolish? But I’m not.
This summer I worked in Disneyland Paris, and I discovered the magic of creating happiness. I entered into a new dimension; I entered into Castmemberland. This world had been created to make children dream, laugh and expand their imagination. The main targets of this world are children. There are people working 24/7 to see children smile.
The infrastructure that shocked me the most was a building called Imagination. In that building, people would transform themselves into pirates, magicians and dolls in just a few minutes. A friend told me that this dressing room was the biggest in Europe!
Every Disneyland worker had to go through that building in order to go to work. In the entrance there was the dinning room, a Disney store (of course!) and an information point for the cast members. Then, while advancing, you entered in a new sphere; pirates, phantoms and princesses walking, talking and chilling together.
In order to use the magic dressing room properly, a few rules must be taken into consideration. How does its work?
First, you (as a cast member) have to know your character. Then you ask someone that works in the dressing room, which costume would suit your character. Once you are informed about your outfits, you need to know where they are placed. Good luck with that as you have to find your hat, shirt, bow, jacket, security shoes (the ones that will protect you from any type of crashing!), etc. Don’t forget that the weather in France changes every day: one day can be windy and rainy and the next sunny and hot. Therefore, don’t forget your character’s scarf or coat if needed or other accessories related to the season of the year or the upcoming holiday. Remember that it’s not only taking the right clothes, it’s not that simple, you have to know that there are different sizes.. Do you have everything? Perfect. Now it’s time to go to the locker and put on your costume. Before entering into the park (where the guests will be waiting for your great performance) you have to check if everything is perfectly prepared for the show. All the clothes must be cleaned, each detail is important. If there’s any imperfection, workers can put their clothes in the laundry collection basket. Yes! The company takes responsibility of washing the costumes that means that workers don’t need to take their costumes to their houses.
Last but not least, check that your pins are there, the ones that will inform the guests your name and the languages that you speak (and if you want one of Dory or even Daisy). And now you are finally prepared to go for work and make the day special for your peers and clients!