Clyde and Seamore’s Sea Lion High officially debuted to media and lucky park-goers on 16 April, bringing a new storyline to two of the park’s most fun-loving characters. It begins with a tribute to teachers everywhere, and then the hijinks kick in. It seems Clyde and Seamore have been nominated to win scholarships to Ocean University, but their well-known penchant for goofing off has gotten them into trouble: namely, their lack of enough course credits to graduate. With the help of some of their classmates, can they pass their classes and join the ranks marching toward their diploma to the tune of Pomp and Circumstance? Or will a pesky classmate have his way and steal their scholarships out from under them?
A series of set-pieces take the duo through gym class, science class and dance class, featuring a series of the behaviours the sea lions exhibited during the previous show, and some all-new tricks. We think one of the most charming elements of any new animal show is the ‘learning process’, and Clyde and Seamore didn’t disappoint. For the most part they hit their marks; occasionally they weren’t entirely sure what was being asked of them, and once or twice they stayed in character with the typical high-schooler attitude of, “Yeah…whatever.” We love it when that happens!
Clyde and Seamore aren’t the only animals attending Sea Lion High, though. Opie the otter stole the show during its former incarnation, and he’s not willing to let go of his star status just yet. When he arrives on stage and poses as the otter version of the MGM lion, giving a pint-sized roar, the crowd goes wild. Naturally, he goes on to save the day, a role worthy of the mega-celebrity he has become.
There aren’t too many things funnier than a walrus doing sit-ups, so have cameras at the ready when Sir Winston joins the celebration near the end of the show.
The wildly popular mime who had audiences roaring during the pre-show for Pirate Island has gone, replaced by a crossing guard who assists guests in finding a seat (or not!). We’re not sure this works quite as well as the mime, but time will tell as the character finds his stride and perhaps adds to his repertoire.
True to SeaWorld’s dedication to the environment, Sea Lion High also features subtle conservation messages, such as “all drains lead to the ocean” and the importance of keeping our rivers and oceans clean. Even an otter knows better than to throw rubbish into our waterways, and he acts as the clean-up crew, removing a discarded soda can from the bottom of his ‘river’ and putting it in its proper place.
Prior to the show we had the chance to speak to two of the team members who helped design the show. Judy Jenkins, Director of Education, says: “It’s a new show, a new set, and all new enrichment opportunities. It’s the last day of school, so that’s really fun. It’s a celebration of education and a reminder that we really are connected by one ocean.”
Michael Fletcher, Vice President of Entertainment, chimed in on what he likes best about the new show. “My favourite part is the otter tube. We actually get to see how otters swim.”
What did it take to bring the show to SeaWorld’s stage? Fletcher told us: “We’ve been working on it for three years. It’s the same animals, but different behaviours, and we want people to be inspired by it.”
Sea Lion High is a colourful, high-energy change after long-running Pirate Island, and while some of the ‘high school culture’ details may be lost on international visitors, the basic story is easy to follow. And who doesn’t love watching Clyde, Seamore and Opie perform, showing us all why they’ve become some of SeaWorld’s most beloved animal ambassadors?
You can see these cheeky chappies perform at SeaWorld Orlando, with one of our great value tickets. Click here to find out more!