Disneyland ResortWalt Disney World Resort

Candlelight Processional (Disneyland & Walt Disney World)

Candlelight time

The Candlelight season has arrived at Disney. At Walt Disney World the ceremony is running three times nightly (5:00, 6:45 and 8 p.m.) at Epcot through December 30th. At Disneyland it will be held tonight and tomorrow at 5:30pm and 7:45pm in Town Square. (Narrators are listed below)

The Candlelight Processional has been a tradition at Disneyland since 1958. The show is approximately an hour and features an orchestra, choir, solo performers, and a guest narrator. The story of Christmas is read and Christmas songs are performed between segments.

It was started as a request of Walt Disney to Dr. Charles Hirt (a friend and Chairman of the Choral Music Department at the University of Southern California). In 1971 when the Magic Kingdom opened in Walt Disney World they started the tradition on Main Street as well. Traditionally the ceremony ran one weekend a year and only a couple of shows per evening. In 1993 the Walt Disney World show moved to EPCOT where it has been since and over the years continued to add nights. The Disneyland version tried out the Fantasyland Theater in 1998 but returned to Main Street. At Walt Disney World they run three shows a night most nights from Thanksgiving through Christmas. At Disneyland in 2012 they expanded to run for 20 nights from December 1st through 20th. In 2013 the show returned to its traditional format of two nights (two shows a night) on the West coast.

Here are some video clips from both coasts I have taken over the years:


Geek thoughts: I have always enjoyed this annual event and over the years attended quite a few at both resorts. If you have an opportunity and enjoy Christmas music the events are worth the time. If you are a WDW veteran I would recommend giving the Disneyland version a try sometime. The musical arrangements are different and the setting in Town Square is impressive. The views are more challenging because only invited guests get seats and everyone else is in standby around the perimeter and you have to stand, so be warned and allow plenty of time if you plan to attend.

2015 Narrators:
Saturday – Geena Davis
Sunday – Lana Parrilla

Walt Disney World:
11/27 – 11/29 — Gary Sinise
11/30 – 12/3 — Neil Patrick Harris
12/4 – 12/5 — Whoopi Goldberg
12/6 – 12/8 — Joe Morton
12/9 – 12/11 — Ana Gasteyer
12/12 – 12/14 — Meredith Vieira – NEW
12/15 – 12/17— America Ferrera – NEW
12/18 – 12/20 — Chandra Wilson – NEW
12/21 – 12/23 — Daniel Dae Kim – NEW
12/24 – 12/26 — Edward James Olmos
12/27 – 12/28 – Blair Underwood
12/29 – 12/30 — Amy Grant

Candlelight time
Walt Diseny World Candlelight

Related Disneygeek.com Links:

I had several requests for what songs are in the show. Below are the listings for both Disneyland and Walt Disney World.

Disneyland Candlelight Processional Show Order/Song List:

Procession songs:

  1. O Little Town of Bethlehem (in G unison)
  2. The First Noel (in D, unison)
  3. Hark the Herald Angels Sing (in F, unison)
  4. It Came Upon a Midnight Clear. (in B-Flat, unison)

Show order:

  1. Sing Praise to Him, Our Lord (arr. Jim Christensen)
  2. The First Noel (arr. Don Neufeld, Azusa Pacific University)
  3. Candlelight Carol (arr. John Rutter)
  4. He is Born (arr. Roger Wagner)
  5. Angels We Have Heard on High (arr Eskew/Healey)
  6. What Child is This (arr. Ken Whitcomb)
  7. We Three Kings (arr. Eskew/Healey)
  8. Sing Noel (arr. Brent Pierce)
  9. Joy to the World (arr. Bob Krogstadt)
  10. Silent Night (arr. Fred Bock)
  11. One Solitary Life Underscore
  12. O Come All Ye Faithful
  13. Hallelujah Chorus (Handel’s Messiah)
  14. Candlelight Recessional (Up on the House Top)
  15. Sleigh Ride

Walt Disney World Show Order:

  1. Shout For Joy
  2. O Come All Ye Faithful
  3. Away in a Manager
  4. O Holy Night
  5. Angels From The Realms Of Glory
  6. Angels We Have Heard on High
  7. Rejoice With Exceeding Great Joy/We Three Kings
  8. What Child Is This?
  9. Do You Hear What I Hear?
  10. Silent Night
  11. Joy To The World
  12. The Hallelujah Chorus

A couple related Candlelight News Stories:

Thank you to Mark for the Disneyland show order information, the WDW info is from the CD that was released in 1997

Leave a Comment