With the holidays rushing by, we need something new and exciting to look forward to in 2019. There's nothing this Frog Family enjoys more than ringing in the New Year with a trip to our favorite place ... Walt Disney World! And what better way to celebrate than with the Epcot International Festival of the Arts? After making its debut in 2017, the Epcot International Festival of the Arts returns again Jan. 18 through Feb. 25, 2019. We’re so hoppy the festival will be taking place seven days a week this year! Even better, the Epcot International Festival of the Arts is included with regular park admission.
In my not-so-humble opinion, this festival is Epcot's best. Entertainment abounds with live broadway performances, art being created on-site and more. We're here to give you the lowdown on the best eats and acts to enjoy during the Epcot International Festival of the Arts 2019 ... plus tips!
Disney on Broadway Concert Series at Epcot International Festival of the Arts
We’re no Broadway connoisseurs, but this Frog Family has fallen in love with the Disney on Broadway Concert Series. Last year, we saw Jenn Gambatese and Kevin Massey, who gave guests a preview of what Frozen on Broadway will sound like when it hits New York City this year! If you have theater-loving tadpoles in your family, this is a can’t miss. These performers will blow you away with their talent and have you singing all night long! If you’ve heard “Let It Go” one too many times in your household (we’ve all been there) have no fear — these performers dig deep into Disney classics and offer a unique style. Our favorite part is hearing songs exclusive to the Broadway shows ... not included in the original films!
For 2019, performances will take place NIGHTLY at the America Gardens Theatre in World Showcase at 5:30 p.m., 6:45 p.m. and 8 p.m. That means we can sing and dance every day of the week! Dining packages are available if you'd like to guarantee a show seating, and reservations are open online or by calling 407-939-7463.
Disney on Broadway Concert Series Schedule 2019
Jan. 18-19, 2019 – Kerry Butler & Kevin Massey
Jan. 20-21, 2019 – Meredith Inglesby & Steve Blanchard
Jan. 22-23, 2019 – Kerry Butler & Kevin Massey
Jan. 24-25, 2019 – Meredith Inglesby & Steve Blanchard
Jan. 26, 2019 – Kerry Butler & Kevin Massey
Jan. 27, 2019 – Meredith Inglesby & Steve Blanchard
Jan. 28-29, 2019 – Arielle Jacobs & Adam Jacobs
Jan. 30-31, 2019 – Heidi Blickenstaff & Gavin Lee
Feb. 1-2, 2019 – Arielle Jacobs & Adam Jacobs
Feb. 3-4, 2019 – Heidi Blickenstaff & Gavin Lee
Feb. 5-6, 2019 – Arielle Jacobs & Adam Jacobs
Feb. 7-8, 2019 – Heidi Blickenstaff & Gavin Lee
Feb. 9, 2019 – Arielle Jacobs & Adam Jacobs
Feb. 10, 2019 – Heidi Blickenstaff & Gavin Lee
Feb. 11-12, 2019 – Ashley Brown & Josh Strickland
Feb. 13-14, 2019 – Kissy Simmons & Alton Fitzgerald White
Feb. 15-16, 2019 – Ashley Brown & Josh Strickland
Feb. 17-18, 2019 – Kissy Simmons & Alton Fitzgerald White
Feb. 19-20, 2019 – Ashley Brown & Josh Strickland
Feb. 21-22, 2019 – Kissy Simmons & Alton Fitzgerald White
Feb. 23, 2019 – Ashley Brown & Josh Strickland
Feb. 24, 2019 – Kissy Simmons & Alton Fitzgerald White
Feb. 25, 2019 – Ashley Brown, Josh Strickland, Kissy Simmons, Alton Fitzgerald White
Epcot International Festival of the Arts Variety Acts
Art in Action
Everywhere you turn at the Epcot International Festival of the Arts, you’ll find inspiration. Not being personally graced with artistic talent myself, watching art come alive is fascinating for me. Throughout World Showcase, some of your favorite Disney artists can be found bringing their unique styles to life. No kidding — we spent 30 minutes watching an artist create the Beauty and the Beast stained glass mural with auto paint last year. The whole frog family was mesmerized! The creativity is truly astounding. What’s even cooler is that you can purchase the pieces that you watched being created before your very eyes!
Tons of artists can be found around World Showcase, whether creating something new on the spot, talking with guests or signing their work. We were lucky enough to chat with one of our favorites Greg McCullough last year! Buying this giant Mickey and Minnie piece was a totally reasonable purchase, right? Now, to figure out how to get it back home to the pond ...
What's wonderful about Epcot International Festival of the Arts is that the art spans beyond Disney. There is something for every Frog Family taste! We loved spending some time watching Rob Kaz bring his signature paintings and characters to life, and Noah demonstrate his unique take on classic Disney characters.
Featured Gallery and Pavilion Galleries
Celebrated Disney artists will have their original works on display in the Featured Gallery at Odyssey Festival Showplace. Catch more multi-cultural art in the Pavilion Galleries open from 11 a.m. to 9 p.m. daily.
- American Heritage Gallery – American Adventure
Explore the artistry of American Indian communities from 7 geographic regions across the United States.
- Bijutsu-kan Gallery – Japan
Delve into the origin and evolution of “kawaii,” Japan’s cute culture.
- Gallery of Arts and History – Morocco
Check out the unique designs of time-honored crafts.
- House of the Whispering Willows – China
Discover the wonders of the new Shanghai Disney Resort.
- Mexico Folk Art Gallery – Mexico
Celebrate the artistry and traditions of Día de Muertos.
- Stave Church Gallery – Norway
Observe art representational of the culture that influenced Disney’s Frozen.
- Chalk Gallery
See forced perspective chalk art with a three-dimensional look and watch imaginative artists recreate works by famous masters.
The whole family can get in on the arts action during Epcot Festival of the Arts interactive events. With Figment's Brush with the Master Scavenger Hunt, the tadpoles can purchase a map and stickers at locations around Epcot and then search for Figment hiding inside famous works of art at each World Showcase pavilion. At World Showcase Plaza, everyone can grab a paintbrush and contribute to a giant mural.
Of course, you can stop by Animation Academy year round and learn to draw some of your favorite Disney characters, and hop over to Kidcot Fun Stops in each World Showcase pavilion to draw, color and collect activity cards.
Community Arts Showcase
Epcot International Festival of the Arts is chock full of professional artists — painters, singers and more are around every corner! We love that the Festival also shines a light on young performers. Between Broadway performances at America Gardens Theatre, up-and-coming local talent is showcased.
If you’re a fan of Etsy-esqué art, you’ll find yourself captivated around World Showcase by Disney-inspired artists selling custom products. We couldn’t leave without a family set of hand-painted Toms shoes for the whole family, adorned with our favorite Disney characters.
Being quite the nature-conscious frog, another one of our favorites last year was the Jortra Boutique booth, with jewelry made entirely out of recycled materials such as bamboo, orange peels and coffee beans.
While I’m a huge fan of planning ahead, the most magical parts of the Epcot International Festival of the Arts were spontaneous. While not on a set schedule, we came across an endless array of live performances while strolling through Future World and World Showcase. Living statues, visiting marching bands, acrobatics and gravity-defying feats of strength kept us entertained for hours. This is arguably Epcot’s most entertaining festival by far.
Epcot International Festival of the Arts Eats & Treats
If you know us at all by now, you know that we toadally live for the food at Epcot’s annual festivals. Epcot International Festival of the Arts did not disappoint. Not only was the food absolutely delicious, but the platters were oh-so-Instagram-worthy. Each snack and meal is a work of art both in taste and sight! Last year, we were #blessed enough to try a trio of drinking chocolate at the America Pavilion!
Festival-exclusive Food Studios were open daily during the festival from 11 a.m. to 9 p.m. across Future World and World Showcase last year, and they will return again for 2019. Here are some of studios' food and drink highlights:
- The Artist’s Table — Beef wellington with mushroom bordelaise, fennel cream and roasted baby vegetables
- The Painter’s Palate — Smoked salmon and cream gâteau with egg yolk cream, paddlefish caviar and micro-herbs
- Pop Eats! — Almond frangipane cake with raspberry and chocolate
- Cuisine Classique — Red wine-braised short rib with parsnip purée, broccolini, baby tomatoes and aged balsamic
To whet your appetite, here is a pic of the deconstructed reuben and deconstructed breakfast from the Deconstructed Dish food studio that was very popular.
Seminars and Workshops at Epcot International Festival of the Arts
Disney artists, guest experts and cast members present both free and paid learning experiences at Epcot International Festival of the Arts. Explore your creative horizons or take your talents to the next level with different events each week! Learn things like calligraphy and floral arranging, or photography and food styling.
Many seminars are free. Workshops are offered Friday to Monday. Many of these even include a piece of art — created by you! Be sure to save room in your luggage for that new beautiful, hand-painted canvas. Check out the full schedule of seminars and workshops here.
Epcot International Festival of the Arts Tips and Tricks
- Try scheduling your visit for Tuesday through Thursday and mornings for lighter crowds. Locals tend to stop by on the weekends!
- If you have the time, try dedicating a full day to Epcot if you don't already. There is so much to do and see at the Festival of the Arts!
- Attend the first showing at 5:30 p.m. of the Disney on Broadway concert series. Crowds usually increase later in the evening. (We also like to play it safe and catch the first showing in case weather interferes later!)
- Arrive at least 30 minutes ahead of time for a good seat at any Epcot International Festival of the Arts exclusive performance.
- If you’re already planning on a sit-down meal during your day at Epcot, we highly recommend the Disney on Broadway Concert Series Dining Package. Not only will you get a delicious meal at one of Epcot’s five best restaurants, but also guaranteed prime seating at the concert.
- Find interactive photo-ops throughout World Showcase. You and your tadpoles can become part of classic masterpieces for fun family photos!
- Take time to visit with the artists around World Showcase. Watch them paint and chat with them! If art interests your tadpoles, this is a truly unique opportunity to show them where their creativity can take them. We love seeing Lily inspired to make her own giant dreamcatcher, and Tad excited to go home and paint his favorite Star Wars character.
- Share your snacks! Many of the festival flavors are quite unique and rich. Some flavors may be too intense to indulge in a full serving of yourself. Sample around the world and split, sip and savor flavors among your Frog Squad. This is the perfect way to introduce your little ones to exciting new ingredients and teach them about culture.
- Check out your usual food stops such as Refreshment Outpost and Fife & Drum for more special Epcot International Festival of the Arts food and beverages.
- Find unique Festival merchandise, special pins and more in the Festival Showplace and around the park. As always, we recommend creating a "wishlist" throughout the day and picking up all of your sought-after items at the Festival Showplace (inside the Odyssey building) on your way out. You'll find the best selection here!
This Festival isn't over until the Fat Lady sings .. .and in this case, that will be me Feb. 25 after I'm stuffed with this delicious food. We can't wait to indulge! Have a question about the Epcot International Festival of the Arts? Ask away in comments, and then hop over to purchase discount Disney World tickets.
Related: Guide to Walt Disney World Events