Image via DreamWorks Trolls The Experience
Feld is known for their impressive arena shows, such as Monster Jam and Disney on Ice!, but their latest plan switches out the arena for the mall.
DreamWorks' "Trolls: The Experience," opens this fall in New York City ahead of a multi-city tour, in what Feld Entertainment has called
“the inaugural location-based entertainment collaboration” between the Tampa Bay-based live entertainment company and Universal Brand Development.
The 12,000-square-foot experience offers a number of small exhibits ranging from a 3D dance party to a musical forest that interacts with instruments played by guests. A bakery and a "Bibbidi Bobbidi" boutique-style salon where guests can get Troll makeovers, including giant Troll wigs, are also available.
Stations with temporary tattoos, coloring pages and other children's activities are scattered through the attraction.
Using everything from virtual reality to old-school carnival mirrors, the new Trolls-based experience moves Feld into a unique style of entertainment that, until now, has been more focused on educational exhibits.
Traveling exhibits ranging from mummies to dinosaurs are common for science centers and other museums across the country, but "Trolls: The Experience" is a stand-alone concept that even includes its own ticketing counters and exit gift shop.
Opening this fall in a space at 218 W. 57th St. that has seen other traveling exhibits, most recently a Downton Abbey exhibit, Trolls will test Feld in ways traditional arena shows haven’t. The GGP-owned space is nearly three times the size of the confirmed Trolls exhibit. A leasing agent for GGP confirmed to the Commercial Observer
that Trolls will either expand into the rest of the rented space or it will be subleased during the exhibit's nearly two-year planned run in New York.
The New York run of the pop-up exhibit is viewed as a test
for Feld as they prepare the exhibit’s tour to other cities. With the posted rental prices for the venue at $5.5 million annually, this debut is a pricey one for Feld, who is more known for debuting shows across only two to three days in venues like Tampa’s Amalie Arena and Long Island’s Coliseum.
Unlike arena tours that only visit a city for a few days and offer just a handful of times, location-based experiences like Trolls offer guests the ability to select the day and time best for them. Also, the museum-like attraction gives guests the ability to take as much time as they need to fully enjoy the experience. It's estimated Trolls will take around 60-90 minutes to take in.
Beyond New York, Feld hasn’t shared any details on where the Trolls exhibit may visit, but it will likely visit other retail-based centers, possibly including other GGP properties such as the Altamonte Mall.
Similar exhibits have filled empty retail spaces, and with the "retailpocalypse" causing more brick-and-mortar stores to close every day, Feld will have plenty of options on where to take the exhibition.
Image via thaibookingholiday | Instagram
Trolls out front of the Universal Studios Singapore promoting the new summer Troll events at the park
Family attractions have become a popular option for malls looking to fill spaces left by shuttered anchor tenants. The Florida Mall has seen success
with its permanent attraction The Crayola Experience, which includes similar small interactive exhibits like those found in the upcoming Trolls attraction.
Comparable exhibits have stopped by Orlando for extended runs, including the now-closed 10,000-square-foot CSI: The Experience
on International Drive. But with Universal Orlando now using the Trolls franchise in its new nighttime show
and other rumored attractions
in the works for the resort, Feld may not be able to bring their traveling attraction to Orlando (much as The Marvel Experience
, not to be confused with Feld’s Marvel Universe Live! arena show, cannot visit Orlando thanks to the infamous Universal-Marvel theme park rights contract
Both Feld and Universal have confirmed that Trolls is just the first of numerous brands and concepts that the two plan to debut. The Universal partnership is also a surprising one for Feld, who Disney has previously been rumored to be interested in buying
. The majority of Feld shows now feature Disney characters, and the family-owned company shocked the family entertainment industry when it closed down its Ringling Brothers brand of shows after a 146-year-long run. Some thought the closure of Ringling was in preparation for a sale to Disney, but in the 14 months since the last Ringling Brothers show, there has been no indication that the a Disney buyout is moving forward.
Tickets are on sale
now for DreamWorks "Trolls: The Experience" in New York and start at $25 during soft opening, with regular tickets beginning at $40 after the official opening in mid-November.
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