Disney's all about magic, right? So, magic water, seemingly magical acrobatic feats ... they're just the beginning of the wow experiences at the Epcot International Festival of the Arts. Visual, performing and culinary arts throughout the theme park are designed to make you stop and gawk. Here are 7 highlights of the Epcot Festival of the Arts, which runs through February 19, 2018.
I'll be walking the whole park soon to take in the entire Epcot Festival of the Arts. Following are things you should definitely seek out. I experienced most at media preview and found the rest myself while sprinting around before bolting to a meeting elsewhere.
Highlights at the Epcot Festival of the Arts – Magic Water
This is just so incredibly cool. A guy puts paint into "magic water," rakes it with a gizmo, then somehow transfers the multicolor design onto fabric. In the end, customers receive a scarf, dog bandana or other fabric art item that was created as they watched. The first video explains the process, and the second one – which is way more fun – shows a scarf being made.
Highlights at the Epcot Festival of the Arts – Art Defying Gravity
Sporting paint-themed rainbow-colored costumes, acrobats do incredible body-twisting feats. Let this photo and video give you an idea of the show you might stumble upon.
Highlights at the Epcot Festival of the Arts – Pork Roulade
Pork roulade? She's kidding, right? You're thinking it, I know. How can pork roulades compare to magic water and upside-down acrobats? Taste it, my friends. At the Epcot Festival of the Arts food "studio" called The Artist's Table, you can have the best meal of your trip. It's called roasted pork roulade with butternut squash puree, marble potatoes and baby carrots with a red wine sauce.
Here are a couple of foods that are fun to look at. This festival is one-third about the culinary arts, after all.
Here's what a typical food studio looks like. And yes, you're bound to find a Minnie Mouse fan at every one.
Highlights at the Epcot Festival of the Arts – Custom T-shirts
At the annual Stars Wars event at Disney's Hollywood Studios, custom T-shirts like the ones below were huge sellers. They're practical, and they're limited editions because once the event is over no more are made. So, for the Epcot Festival of the Arts, an outfit called Enemy Ink invites guests to choose a T-shirt color and size, then one of 12 designs. Then the folks manning the station make your apparel while you watch.
Here a guy is setting up my T-shirt.
He's putting the design on the T-shirt.
And, then running it through a dryer.
Highlights at the Epcot Festival of the Arts – Paintings
Visual arts are huge at the festival, so much so that the Epcot Art of Disney store has been temporarily purged of its regular inventory so festival-only merchandise could take its place. The two paintings below are by artist Greg McCullough, and they have hidden Mickeys and other items sneakily residing within. Take a look.
This painting was first made for a resident of Golden Oak, a residential community within Disney World. It has hidden Mickey's throughout.
This McCullough painting is the Festival's official image. You can buy a poster of the painting for about $50.
See Mickey at the wheel? On the easel? On the totem?
Look for the theater masks in the tree. This painting has all kinds of surprises if you're willing to seek them out.
Highlights at the Epcot Festival of the Arts – Living Statues
Living statues are not new to Epcot, but that doesn't mean they're not super-fabulous. I saw three during my visit, all by that big fountain in the center of Future World. One is pictured at the top of this blog post, the other below these words.
Highlights at the Epcot Festival of the Arts – Be the Painting You Love
This is my very favorite part of the Epcot International Festival of the Arts. They're called Artful Photo Ops, and several are placed around the World Showcase. These two photos are from last year, but you'll get the idea: Larger than life famous paintings have holes cut out for visitors' heads. Simply pop yourself into the masterpiece and say cheese.
So, head on over to Epcot, friends. The 2018 International Festival of the Arts has a ton to do and see. Below is a (cut off) picture of the schedule. Note the Disney on Broadway concert series and educational opportunities, too.