Tournament of Kings - Excalibur

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Excalibur's Tournament of Kings Show

Jan 3, 2005 (Updated Jan 4, 2005)
Review by  
Rated a Very Helpful Review

Pros:Staged combats are fairly well done and exciting, but it's mostly lip-sync'd.

Cons:The meal is acceptable, certainly not exceptional, which makes the show overpriced.

The Bottom Line: I would not go again, but would tell people to see it once -- especially with the kids, even our teenager enjoyed it well enough.


To accommodate our children, I decided we would see the Tourney of Kings located in our hotel the Excalibur. The show was ~$53 ea. with taxes and no discounts for children over 3 years, and this includes the approximate $13 for the meal (not optional). The hotel provides its guests with a $10 discount coupon good for two, so we saved $20 off the price (well, sort of). The meal was a small whole roast chicken with large style home-fries and a green vegetable along with a biscuit/roll and drinks of soda or water (beer/wine is extra). The chicken was over-cooked, the potatos terrible, I didn't touch the green, but I liked the roll. The Dragon's Blood was pretty good, our young daughter said it was the best tomato soup she's ever had (smile). The wife had a Strawberry Daiquiri she claimed was "pretty good" (extra charge). I also purchased the ~20 oz. mug for $13.95 that included the beer (MGD). Drank the beer, kept the mug.

The pre-show began with a whimper, bad jokes by "Merlin" and a midget joker/fool running thru the audience. However, once the various "Kings" were introduced and they acknowledged their various sections, the true show began while the waitstaff delivered the meals. We were in the Russian section and, of course, the Tsar was scripted to be something of a rounder (cheat). But this made no bones with us, and we rooted loudly for our section king who did win a few of the battles (by hook or by crook). Our show had a fairly full attendance, and I would say that most people involved themselves with shouting and table-banging for their country and King (even for the evil Dragon Lord).

I found the best part of the show to be the jousting tournaments between the "Kings" -- during some of which they are de-horsed and resort to hand-to-hand combat. The majority of the show is well choreographed and executed. There's also some well accomplished horsemanship displayed during these combats. Then, there is the combat based upon the main theme where Arthur's son the Prince battles the Dragon Lord. I doubt I'm really giving anything away by saying the Prince does become King during the final ceremony. I found my mind wandering during the jousting, not because it was boring, it was not, but because I kept wondering how exciting it must have been to be at the real thing some thousand years ago with the entire renaissance faire atmosphere surrounding such events.

In general I don't disagree with, nor will I tank, the fact that much of the show's sounds are pre-recorded. I can see where it is necessary. But, the music/recording is quite loud (rock concert loud) over and beyond the large size of the room/stage. The actors do a pretty good job of staying in sync with the recorded sword clashes and shield banging that goes on, but it does lend a bit of "cheesy" feel to the whole thing at times when their timing is a bit off.

Seating in the lower-middle sections, rather than at the end or up high, is preferable in my opinion for a better view.


Recommend this product? Yes


Best Suited For: Families
Best Time to Travel Here: Anytime

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