It’s been a very long time since anyone has been able to say this and have it be true, but after many years it is once again time for Animaniacs. The cast is going to be getting back together and hitting the road for a live tour, on which they will perform tons of beloved songs from the show, as well as some new versions and never-before-heard numbers that didn’t make it past network executives the first time around.
The details for Animaniacs Live are still in the development stage (the website isn’t up yet, and the actual cities and dates are still to be determined), but what we do know is that this won’t just be a mere singalong. “This is going to be very interactive,” said Jess Harnell, who voiced Wakko, “It’ll be like hanging out with us in your living room.”
Assuming your living room is big enough to hold an 87-piece orchestra that is.
Harnell was joined by Rob Paulsen (Yakko), Tress MacNeille (Dot), and the man responsible for those songs you still find yourself singing two decades later, composer Randy Rogel, at Comic-Con to promote the tour. They capped their panel with a performance for all in attendance.
For as wonderful as the songs are (and they are), they don’t seem perfectly suited for live performance, what with the intricate, internal rhyming and super fast pace (“Not a whole lot of breathing,” said MacNeille). As such, I wanted to know if the three voice actors were worried about doing any of them in front of a live audience. Each said those challenges seem minor to how excited they are about the whole endeavor. (Though Harnell said he’s dreading possibly getting the lyrics wrong, especially because he knows the audience won’t.)
And just like you have your own favorite song, so do they. MacNeille said she’s most looking forward to performing “I’m Mad,” Harnell named “Wakko’s America” as his (don’t worry, I reminded him not to forget to phrase the song in the form of a question, since I’m a huge dork—and so are you if you get that joke), and Paulsen and Rogel both listed “Yakko’s World” as the one they have at the top of their lists. “It’s the one that just gets people so excited,” said Paulsen, who doesn’t have to re-learn the lyrics to that one since people ask him to sing it all the time.
And yes, it will have an update since the map of the world has changed quite a bit over the years. Although, as of right now Rogel has not updated “Presidents,” which ended with Bill Clinton. “Maybe I’ll have to wait ’til November,” he said.
They have done a live show before, in San Francisco where they did about 20 songs, and it was so well-received that Warner Bros. said maybe they should do a whole tour, which will inevitably be filled with the show’s audience all grown up with children of their own.
“It’s kind of mind-blowing, but it is really, really gratifying for us,” said Paulsen.
As it will be for audience members that grew up loving the show, who will get to hear and experience the songs like they never have before. Not to mention some of us really need a few new geography lessons.
Which Animaniacs song is your favorite? Sing it in the comments below.
Featured Image: Warner Bros.