Disneyland Marvel-Themed Rogers: The Musical REVIEW, Is it Worth Your Time?

In addition to incredible attractions, Disneyland is known for high-powered live entertainment. Disneyland benefits from being a short drive away from the acting capital of the world. The new Avengers-themed show, Rogers: The Musical, is coming to Disneyland this summer.

In particular, the Hyperion Theater in Disney California Adventure has delivered Broadway-caliber work over the two-plus decades that it has operated. Now, Rogers: The Musical has debuted.

Disney describes Rogers: the Musical as a “classic tale of heroes, time travel, and romance.” The show traces the story of Steve’s humble beginnings from “World War II to becoming Captain America” to becoming the leader of the Avengers and beyond. Below we have a full show review, dates on when Rogers: The Musical is running, and more.

When Is Rogers: The Musical Running at Disney California Adventure?

This new Avengers musical, themed to the story of Captain America, is coming to the Hyperion Theatre. Rogers: The Musical will debut this summer and run for a limited time starting on June 30, 2023 and ending August 31, 2023. The show is approximately 30 minutes and will run from Tuesday through Saturday most weeks, with several performances per day.

Be aware! There are a couple of additional dates in July that Rogers: The Musical will not be performing. The show will not be performed July 13-16 due to a private event at the Hyperion Theater. As of July 7, 2023 these are the only dates during the expected weekly show days of Tuesday-Saturday when the show will not be performed. Currently the entertainment schedule for the show is listed through August 18th and will be extended to include the dates through the currently announced August 31st close of the show.

The production will feature a cast of singers and dancers telling the story of Steve Rogers (Captain America) and will also feature Peggy Carter, Nick Fury, and select members of the Avengers.

Rogers: The Musical Review

Rogers: The Musical tells the story of Steve Rogers in World War II and how he became Captain America, following his journey as the leader of the Avengers and his relationship with Agent Carter.

In addition to two songs we’re familiar with, “Star Spangled Man” from Captain America: the First Avenger and “Save the City” from Hawkeye, the show also feature 5 new songs with music by Christopher Lennertz and lyrics by Jordan Peterson, Christopher Lennertz and Alex Karukas. The music features several musical genres, including big band jazz, modern funk, classic orchestra, and more, with recordings from a 60-piece orchestra featured in the show. Rogers: The Musical features lots of variety in its songs, from a romantic ballad to a high-energy battle song.

Christopher Lennertz, the composer, conductor and arranger, comments, “It was important to us to continue the best of both Avengers and Broadway traditions, infusing humor, heart and heroic action into the music. The score has memorable melodies and a huge scope of instrumentation that match the iconic presence of our hero.”

The set design features two-dimensional scenery, several moving set pieces, and the Hyperion theater’s 2,200-square-foot video screen. The Avengers and other familiar characters have a unique costume design that is not exactly how we see them in movies but leave a “more casual” impression of the characters (very similar to what we saw in Hawkeye). 

The choreography takes inspiration from dance styles from across the decades, “spinning them with a modern twist” according to Disney Live Entertainment Choreographer Sarah Kobayashi.

Rogers: The Musical Story Breakdown & Review

It makes sense that out of all the Avengers, Captain America and his story would be perfect for the stage. Captain America’s story was beautifully developed in the movies—his abilities aside, Steve Rogers became a hero because of his bravery and heart of gold, which is reflected in his origin story. We root for him, we sympathize with the incredible loss and challenges he endures, and we celebrate his happy ending.

Jennifer Magill, the Producer at Disney Live Entertainment, comments about Rogers: The Musical: “Both avid fans and guests that are new to the story of Captain America will relate to Steve’s journey to answer, ‘What do I aspire to? How do I get it? What choices do I have to make?’”

Here are our thoughts on this brand new performance and why it’s the perfect show to welcome guests back into the Hyperion after its hiatus! Warning: spoilers ahead. 

Design of Rogers: The Musical

Though so many elements of the musical were phenomenal, the design really stood out to me as the star of the show. The vibrant colors of the scene design kept you completely immersed in the world of the show, and set pieces moved smoothly in coordination with the action onstage. The transitions between scenes were especially striking, with music and special lighting priming the audience for the next part of Steve’s story. At one point, we transition from Fury catching up Steve on what he has missed to the Battle of New York, which is accomplished with a “explosion” effect complete with smoke and striking lighting, then the backdrop of New York appears completely seamlessly by the time the smoke clears.

The design also works beautifully to connect together what might otherwise be some jarring time jumps in Steve’s story. At one point, this is achieved with Steve posing in front of various backdrops that almost serve as a brief tableau of key moments in his story.

At the end of Star Spangled man, red, white, and blue streamers fall onto the orchestra, and all audience members were smiling ear-to-ear and cheering when this occurred.

The design is truly spectacular for this show, and in my opinion, the best I’ve seen in any live performance. You could go see this several times and still have more to discover!

Musical Performances in Rogers: The Musical 

The actors were amazing, and a highlight was their vocal performances. The actor who portrays Steve Rogers after his transformation is an absolutely powerhouse and has incredible vocal chemistry with the other performers, and the harmonies click together perfectly. Truly heaven to the ears!

I also found it interesting how the interpretation of Nick Fury’s character departed from how he is portrayed in the movies. He’s much higher energy, slightly goofier, and the actor puts on a very engaging performance. There is also a significant difference in the way he engages with other characters in the musical vs. in the movies. In the movies, he is more matter-of-fact, while in the musical, he serves to share important information with Steve in an almost out-of-breath manner. He almost feels like a different character altogether than the mysterious Fury we see in the movies, but I feel that the higher energy interpretation works well for the stage.

The original songs functioned really well to shed light into Steve’s inner thoughts and goals and help the audience to be invested in his story. The lyrics were a standout, and I really appreciated how we saw a side of Steve that we didn’t get to engage much with in the movies, as he questions if he can really “do this all day.”

The Story of Rogers: The Musical

There is so much content to cover in Steve’s life, and I imagine this was a challenge for the creators of the show. However, I thought they did a very nice job finding each moment that served as a “heartbeat” of his story. We clearly see his dreams, we feel the immense pressure he’s bearing, and we celebrate when he finally gets to live out his life with Peggy at the end of the show. Personally, that moment of the movie was always a tear-jerker for me, and the show’s version is no exception.

A particularly great choice was that the actor who played pre-transformation Steve also played older Steve coming back to have a heart-to-heart with current Steve. This was a nice detail and made their song together all the more emotionally impactful for the audience.

How Does Rogers: The Musical Differ From What We Saw In The Hawkeye Show?

One thing that I wondered going into Rogers: The Musical was if it would take the same approach as Hawkeye‘s “Save the City” did (green sweatshirt-clad Hulk, battle choreography, and all), as this song is also featured in Disney California Adventure’s version. Of course, that’s part of the appeal of bringing this to the stage—the Avengers movies have had time to marinate and reach legendary status, so it’s the perfect time to poke a bit of good fun at them.

This is what we see in Rogers: the Musical: exaggerated portrayals of characters, choreography that aggressively captures their essence (which works well, especially for characters like Thor and the Hulk), moments that explicitly acknowledge the fanbase (like the ensemble squealing when Peggy Carter first appears), and jokes that nod to the events of the movies. For example, the moment when Steve is stammering to Peggy that he doesn’t talk often to women is exaggerated for the stage, and it’s a great comedic moment.

Rogers: The Musical did take a similar approach as Hawkeye’s version overall, but it also incorporated some more serious moments that helped balance the show. It definitely feels like a classic musical, but none of it feels cheesy. When you’re immersed in the incredible music, the set that almost feels alive, and the amazing performances of the actors, you’ll feel like you’re in another world for the 30-minute performance.

How Did Rogers: The Musical Translate Captain America’s Story From Screen to Stage?

There are many things to consider when adapting something that is made for the screen into a live play, and with a superhero story, the biggest thing is special effects. What is convenient about Captain America is that his strength is in hand-to-hand combat, which translates easily to the stage. We don’t have to worry about telekinesis, invisibility, flying, etc.

Also, Captain America’s transformation in the movies was already perfectly translatable to the stage, as it was all hidden in the Vita-Ray Chamber. We hear Steve from the inside of the chamber, then see him emerge from a scrawny boy to a very fit superhero. Needless to say, a hidden transformation is pretty straightforward to accomplish onstage, and it also adds to the element of suspense. This moment was definitely a highlight of the show, and the smoke and video screen really helped to accomplish the effect and heighten the tension of the moment.

The special effects in general, accomplished by elaborate lighting, smoke, projections on the video screen, and music worked in perfect harmony with one another. It felt like movie magic, even live onstage!

Where Should I Sit for Rogers: The Musical?

There are three seating sections in the Hyperion: Orchestra, Mezzanine, and Balcony. Orchestra is floor seating that is closest to the stage, Mezzanine is the second floor up from the Orchestra that offers a more general view, and Balcony is the seating highest up in the theater that provides you with a bird’s-eye view.

I sat in the Orchestra (the section closest to the stage) in the second row for this performance, and I loved the vantage point my seat gave me. I always recommend sitting on the end of a row if you are able closest to the aisle (especially if you’re not very tall), as this gives you a better view. In Orchestra, you are completely immersed in the action and can practically feel the energy from the actors, and this is the type of show that is best experienced up close and personally.

I do think that Mezzanine seating would also be great for this show, as it would give you a slightly broader view of the action, but in my opinion, Orchestra takes the cake. If you want to ensure that you get the seating you want, we usually recommend arriving at least an hour before performances at the Hyperion.

Is Rogers: The Musical Worth It?

Rogers: The Musical is absolutely worth seeing if you get the chance to this summer. Especially for the die-hard Marvel fan, seeing Steve’s story onstage is exhilarating and heartwarming, but it also will be a great experience for those not familiar with the Marvel Cinematic Universe who are looking for quality Disney entertainment. That’s one of the main things the creatives of the show emphasized—Rogers: The Musical is for everyone, and I wholeheartedly agree.

For guests who are fist-time visitors to the park, keep in mind that the show is going to be incredibly popular during its run, and to get the seats you prefer, you will need to arrive early and spend a large chunk of time waiting in line. Whether or not you’d like to prioritize seeing the musical depends on your interests and how long you are visiting Disneyland. If you’re visiting for multiple days or are a musical theatre geek, I would say this is absolutely worth seeing on one of those days. If you’re not a huge fan of live performance, you might want to prioritize other attractions.

How to See The New Marvel Musical

There are three ways you can see Rogers: the Musical when it opens at the Hyperion. You can read our full guide to the Rogers the Musical virtual queue, premium experiences, and standby options.

Limited-Time Food Offerings for Rogers: The Musical

During the run of Rogers: The Musical, select locations in Disney California Adventure will offer “patriotic and heroically-themed food and beverages,” including:

  • a cherry, vanilla, and blue raspberry shake
  • a sausage and pepperoni wrap
  • a pastrami pretzel dog
  • Vending carts outside the Hyperion will be serving a Rogers: The Musical popcorn bucket that comes with red, white and blue kettle corn

Limited Time PhotoPass Opportunities and Merchandise For Rogers: The Musical

In addition to the Rogers: The Musical Themed food, there will also be Rogers: The Musical themed offerings available for a limited time during the show’s run. You can access two PhotoPass Magic Shots that give you the opportunity to pose alongside Captain America’s shield in front of the Hyperion Theater marquee.

You can also celebrate the debut of the musical with collectible merchandise, including a T-shirt, magnet and ornament that will be available near the Hyperion! The Super Store Featuring Avengers Campus shop also features a variety of Avengers merchandise and apparel.

Details on New Marvel Musical

This new musical show is created in partnership with Disney Live Entertainment and book writer Hunter Bell, star and book writer of the Tony Award-nominated [title of show], and will feature five all-new songs with music by Grammy-winning composer Christopher Lennertz and lyrics by Jordan Peterson, Christopher Lennertz and Alex Karukas.

Confirmed songs in the show include “Save The City” from the Disney+ series “Hawkeye” (with music by Marc Shaiman and lyrics by Scott Wittman and Marc Shaiman), and “Star Spangled Man” from the film “Captain America: The First Avenger” (with music by Alan Menken and lyrics by David Zippel).

The show is part of the ongoing Disney100 Disneyland celebration. There will be merchandise and food and beverage offerings themed to the new show.

Here’s a look at the concept artwork released by Disney.

Previously Disney shared a teaser video (seen below) of someone dressed as the Agent Carter character from the Captain America movies walking towards Hyperion Theatre.

Rogers: The Musical

Here’s more on the background of the new musical and when it was first seen in the Marvel Cinematic Universe, plus the announcement clip of the new show.

What is Rogers: The Musical?

Rogers: The Musical

Rogers: The Musical is a show that was first mentioned within the Marvel Cinematic Universe in the Hawkeye Disney+ show. During the show, Rogers: The Musical is put on as a Broadway show recapping moments from the first Avengers film. In the show, the musical segment is nearly five minutes of musical footage based on the life of Steve Rogers, aka Captain America.

In the Disney+ series, the backstory of the show is that “Rogers: The Musical” was produced in New York City and all the Avengers were invited to see the premiere, but then only Hawkeye showed up.

Rogers: The Musical

Award-winning songwriting team Marc Shaiman and Scott Wittman co-wrote the lyrics and Shaiman also produced the actual song recording for Rogers: The Musical. 

Disney and the Marvel leadership have clearly already been having fun with the show. During the D23 Expo fan event last summer, Marvel Studios President Kevin Feige presented a full musical number from the show on stage during the Marvel presentation. Songwriter Marc Shaiman actually conducted this performance. Feige was clearly giddy and he and Disney Parks Chairman Josh D’Amaro also joked about the performance during the Disney Parks presentation at the D23 Expo.

I had a ton of fun watching the D23 Expo performance. It was really one of the highlights of the weekend.

View that D23 Expo performance here:

You can view the clip that Disney shared announcing the new show at Disney California Adventure here.

We cannot wait to share more about Rogers: The Musical.

Disneyland Hyperion Shows Help Crowds

Whether you are a fan of live theater in the parks or not, you should be excited about Rogers: The Musical as the theater eats people and helps to reduce crowds across the resort when a performance is going on. This is the equivalent, capacity-wise, of running another Haunted Mansion each hour that the theater is in operation. The theater will take 2,000 people per hour, plus the additional people waiting for the next show, out of the parks and into the theater. This is great news for Disneyland crowds this summer.

Rogers: The Musical

We are excited about Rogers: The Musical coming to the Hyperion Theater at Disneyland. As major fans of the Aladdin Musical Spectacular that included the incredible Genie actor that riffed with new jokes every show. This is always the bar that we’ll judge new shows in this space against.

What do you think about the addition of the new show? Is it the right thing for the Hyperion Theater?

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About Gavin Doyle

Gavin Doyle is a best-selling author and founder of Mickey Visit. He is an expert on helping families save money and experience more at Disney, Universal, and beyond. He has been featured in Forbes, ABC7, Travel+Leisure, the OC Register, Orange County Register, LA Times, Yahoo! News, and more.

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4 comments add your comment

  1. Thanks so much for all the wonderful updates. How certain do you think the 8/31/23 close date is? Seems like a huge investment to build up this production for just a 2-month run!

    • I wouldn’t be surprised to see it extended, fingers crossed!

  2. I’m soooo BUMMED it’s only running through August! We will be visiting at the end of November. I really wish you they’d reconsider this and have it run longer. I know my sons, especially my one with Autism, would be over the moon to watch this. I’m sure it will be in high demand.

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