This video is a great behind the scenes look at the How to Train Your Dragon Arena Spectacular show which aired on Australian TV around February 2012, just a few weeks before the premiere of the event. Lots of interesting things to see in this video and it’s well worth the time to watch it all. For example, did you know that the show requires 40 shipping containers to transport it all, yet despite all this gear being moved around the entire show can be set up or torn down in less than a day. We also get a good look at the track mechanism that allows the dragons to fly about the arena space at up to 20 km per hour which itself is impressive due to its size and complexity, not to mention how fast it can be installed and removed in the arena.

The best part is where we get a good look at the animatronic version of Toothless that can walk about on the arena floor. This version of Toothless is a different design from the other large walking dragons like the Nadder and the Gronckle (and the dinosaurs from the Walking with Dinosaurs show) that allows him to get lower to the ground and interact with Hiccup to a higher degree. This is the first time that Global Creatures has tried this design and it looks like it works quite well.

The video contains lots of other interesting things about the show. Among them are a good look at the projection system used on the floor and back wall of the arena, and a look at all the different forms of puppetry used in the show. The various dragons in the show are brought to life through a combination of shadow puppets, hand puppets, suit type puppets worn by a performer and the large scale animatronic dragons which are basically just huge puppets operated live by multiple people. We also get a look at how the dragons are constructed and get to look in on rehearsal sessions with the actors. The complexity of the How to Train Your Dragon Arena Spectacular is amazing and it must have been a daunting task to bring it all together. Looks like it will be astounding!

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Watch a video of the cast for the How to Train Your Dragon Arena Spectacular where they meet the dragons for the first time

Watch a short video of the cast reporting to rehearsal for the first time

 

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