Friday, March 14, 2008

who doesn't?

When they said the Osmonds would be on stage tonight, they really meant it. By the end of their concert, the stage was completely packed with Osmonds, performing and otherwise. They were the headline entertainment at the Children's Miracle Awards, part of the Children's Miracle Network Celebration going on this week at Walt Disney World.

My wife and I wanted to see the performance but we wanted to skip the black-tie dinner that preceded it for two reasons. First, we didn't bring any formal wear with us to Florida. Second, the entrée was filet mignon on a Lenten Friday. Instead we went to Epcot to get fish for dinner. And by fish, I mean sushi at Tokyo Dining.

After dinner we tried to hurry back to the Coronado Springs Resort. Because it took us a long time to find a bus going from the hotel to Epcot before dinner, we thought it might be faster to make our return trip via Monorail from Epcot to the Magic Kingdom and then by bus back to the hotel. It wasn't. We worried that we might miss the Osmonds. Instead that fortunate mistake put us in the right place at the right time to have our pictures taken with Donny Osmond, who was crossing the hallway outside the ballroom about half an hour before showtime.

We used our ticket to the formal dinner to slip in to the back of the ballroom where we found a lone empty table just waiting for us. The award ceremony was almost over. Before long, the Osmonds (including Alan) came on and sang shortened versions of their hits. To mark their 50th anniversary in show business, the four original Osmond Brothers sang an old barbershop song about an auction. Donny & Marie came on to sing a medley of their most famous songs including "Little Bit Country / Rock and Roll," "Soldier of Love," "Paper Roses" and "Puppy Love." Marie stepped aside to let her brothers sing a medley. The only song of theirs that I recognized was "One Bad Apple." They had an odd song about horses and some loud pyrotechnics that took the crowd by surprise.

For their finale, the performing Osmonds brought on their two oldest brothers who are deaf. Jimmy was given the task of explaining how the performing Osmond Brothers got their start as a way to raise money for the education of the two deaf brothers. The serious mood was broken by a series of Wayne's corny jokes (wear two pair of pants when golfing in case you get a hole-in-one). Marie got choked up and got the crowd feeling the same way as she talked about what it must be like to be born deaf into a musical family. Then Donny invited all the other Osmonds in the audience to join them as they sang "He Ain't Heavy, He's My Brother." The two eldest signed as the others sang.

I had a chance to chat separately with Donny and Marie during my remote broadcast on Star 102.1 this morning. It's been about four and a half years since I last saw Donny at a Morning Show Bootcamp convention and about ten years since I booked him as a guest on KLOS. Every time I see him, Donny remembers me from when he would visit the Don & Mike show at WAVA. We were one of the first stations to play "Soldier of Love." One memorable morning we had Donny ride through DC in a limo while standing in the sunroof opening and shouting to passersby "I'm Donny Osmond, don't you wish you were me?"

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Blogger Disneypal said...

What a great story! I've loved the Osmond family for almost 40 years. It was fun reading your experience about the show!


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