Script and notes for the

Script and notes for the Disney/GE “Carousel of Progress”

The Carousel of Progress was perhaps the most entertaining home appliance commercial ever created. Derided by imagineers as “the refrigerator show,” it was unabashed in its attempts to enhance General Electric’s image and market the company’s consumer products. To find an attraction more brazen in its commercialism, one would have to return to the dark days of Tomorrowland’s first year, when financial constraints forced Walt to resort to county-fair-style attractions like The Bathroom of Tomorrow in order to fill his pavilions. And yet, the Carousel somehow rose above its agenda and became one of the most fun attractions in Tomorrowland. Originally created for the 1964 New York World’s Fair, The Carousel was part of Walt’s campaign to prove that Disney theme park entertainment would play on the east coast, and no chances were taken. When the Carousel of Progress opened at the World’s Fair, its use of Audio-Animatronics was more extensive than in any previous Disney attraction. The story was propelled by a diabolically catchy song by the Sherman brothers (“There’s a Great Big Beautiful Tomorrow”), and the revolving theater was an attraction in itself.