This week, during the International Association of Amusement Parks and Attractions (IAAPA) Expo, the Themed Entertainment Association (TEA) announced Disney Parks, Experiences and Products will receive three prestigious Thea Awards in 2023. In addition, Disney Parks, Experiences and Products also received nine Brass Ring Awards, which recognize global innovation and the unwavering spirit of the industry.
“I’m so proud of our teams who continue to delight our guests and consumers by pushing industry boundaries,” said Josh D’Amaro, chairman, Disney Parks, Experiences and Products. “These accolades illustrate our legacy of innovation, as evidenced by projects that opened 50 years apart being awarded together.”
The revolutionary vacation experience Star Wars: Galactic Starcruiser will receive a Thea Award for Outstanding Achievement. The most immersive Star Wars experience ever created, it integrates physical, digital, and live entertainment elements into one cohesive story that plays out over the course of multiple days and nights. In addition, the “Main Street Electrical Parade” will receive the Thea Classic Award, which recognizes an experience that has stood the test of time. The “Main Street Electrical Parade” celebrated its 50th anniversary earlier this year. Tokyo DisneySea will receive the Liseberg Applause Award, which recognizes outstanding theme parks worldwide.
Recognizing her innovative spirit and multiple accomplishments in the field, Disney Live Entertainment Creative Director Susana Tubert will receive the Thea Catalyst Award, reserved for an individual who has achieved a real and positive impact on the industry. Based at the Disneyland Resort, Tubert is a creative leader who inspires artistic risk-taking with an emphasis on story and relevancy, and has contributed her talent, leadership, and experience to the development of beloved shows including “Tale of the Lion King,” “Main Street Electrical Parade,” “Together Forever – A Pixar Nighttime Spectacular,” and other highly successful and immersive cultural celebrations and events, such as Disney Festival of Holidays, “Disney ¡Viva Navidad!,” Lunar New Year Celebration, Plaza de la Familia, Pixar Fest, and “Pop-Up Disney! A Mickey Celebration.” Tubert was also a creative contributor to the recent updates to the Jungle Cruise attraction.
“I would like to thank TEA and IAAPA for these amazing recognitions—and most importantly, for their steadfast dedication to advancing our industry and keeping us connected globally,” said Barbara Bouza, president, Walt Disney Imagineering. “As our Imagineering and Live Entertainment teams continue to deliver magic and inspire humanity, it’s an honor to be recognized by our colleagues and friends around the world. I’d also like to give a special shoutout to this year’s Thea Catalyst Award recipient, Susana Tubert, who continues to be an influential and inspiring leader.”
For Live Entertainment Excellence, the following Disney Live Entertainment projects received Brass Ring Awards:
- Best Theatrical Production – “Tale of the Lion King” at Disneyland Resort
- Most Creative Christmas/Holiday Show – “Mickey’s Dazzling Christmas Parade” at Disneyland Paris
- Most Creative Halloween Haunt, Show or Experience – “Let’s Get Wicked” at Hong Kong Disneyland
- Most Creative Multimedia Spectacular – “Harmonious” at EPCOT
- Most Creative Property-Wide Event – Disneyland Paris 30th Anniversary Celebration
“This year’s Brass Ring and Thea Awards truly speak to the power of live entertainment and the consistent quality of work of the team I have the privilege to lead,” said David Lightbody, Senior Vice President, Disney Live Entertainment. “We are honored and grateful to receive these industry recognitions.”
For Games and Merchandise Excellence, and Food & Beverage Excellence, the following products received Brass Ring Awards:
- Best Apparel Item – Guardians of the Galaxy: Cosmic Rewind Cassette Player Shoulder Bag
- Best Hard Good Item – Halcyon Starcruiser Training Lightsaber Hilt
- Best Plush Item – Groot Scented Plush
- Best New Menu Item – Chocolate Mighty Thor’s Hammer at The Ganachery at Disney Springs