The Ballroom Dancers also sometimes referred to as the Waltzing Dead, are twelve ghosts that haunt the Haunted Mansion.
In the Rides
The Ballroom Dancers appear in every version of the Haunted Mansion including Phantom Manor. The Dancers always appear in the Grand Hall where they are paired up into six couples, each with one man and one woman as they dance in circles to the music being played by the Organist, fading in and out of view in the process.
In Phantom Manor the characters are said to be the ghosts of some of the guests of Melanie Ravenswood's tragic wedding.
There are a grand total of twelve dancers, six of them men and six of them woman. Although they are difficult to distinguish from one another upon examination of their animatronic figures you can make out their personal traits. Although it should be noted that certain traits such as hair colour can vary from park to park as in certain parks versions all-most of the men have brown hair.
- A Yellow Haired and moustached Man in a grey suit. He is paired with the golden haired woman.
- A Pale Pink haired man in a light blue-green suit. He is paired with the pale-pink haired woman.
- An Orange haired man in a light grey suit. He is paired with the orange haired woman.
- A bluish-green haired man in a light grey suit. He is paired with the turquoise haired woman.
- A purple haired man in a white-salmon suit. He is paired with the purple haired woman.
- A man in a green suit. He is paired with the woman in the green dress.
- A Golden Haired Woman in a yellow dress. She is paired the they yellow haired man.
- A pale-pink haired woman in a white-pink dress. She is paired with the man with pale pink hair.
- An orange haired woman in an orange dress. She is paired with the orange haired man.
- A Turquoise Haired woman in a blue and green dress. She is paired with the Turquoise Haired Man
- A purple haired woman in a light violet dress. She is paired with the purple haired man.
- A woman in a green dress. She is paired with the man in the green suit.
During the Seasonal Halloween festivities at the Disney Parks, the Ballroom Dancers often appear during parades where they are portrayed by cast-members.
Mickey's Boo-To-You Halloween Parade
The ballroom dancers are apart of the Haunted Mansion unit in Mickey's Boo-To-You Halloween Parade at Walt Disney World's Magic Kingdom. They are the third group, behind the tombstone float and in front of the Hitchhiking Ghosts. The dresses are pastel colors, much like the ride, while the suits are all white.
When rehearsing, the dancers are asked to come up with backstories for their characters. Their dances will contain hints to their lives. For example, if one of them was poisoned, their hand might be on their throats, or if one of them was electrocuted, they’ll shake when they dance.
The ballroom dancers are apart of the Frightfully Fun Parade at Disneyland. They are the first in the Haunted Mansion units, before the mansion float with the Hitchhiking Ghosts. Their appearances are very similar to Boo To You, only the men wear dark grey suits instead of white.
Mickey's Halloween Celebration
The dancers were in front of the Illusion Manor float in Mickey's Halloween Celebration at Disneyland Paris. Their costumes were more ornate and detailed than in the American parks, themed to fit the time period that Phantom Manor takes place in. The costumes were color coded - purple, green, and orange - from head to toe for both the men and the women.
Mystical Spirits of the Blue Bayou
The female ballroom dancers appeared in this special dining experience, called the Bayou Belles. They were summoned by Dr. Facilier from The Princess and the Frog and joined him in his performance of "Friends on the Other Side".
In the Ghost Gallery the ballroom dancers were said to be the souls of six couples who attended a party at Gracey Manor and that they were killed after Madame Leota cursed them to dance for eternity as a form of punishment for them not paying enough attention to her.
The ballroom ghosts appear in the 2003 film adoption wherein they are shown to be the souls of the men and women who attended the party which Master Gracey's bride died at. They appear during an emotional climax of the film, when Gracey insists to Sara Evers that she is Elizabeth reincarnated. They appear around them, as he continues talking to her about it.
- They are achieved through a Pepper's Ghost affect
- Originally there were going to only be six animatronics and the other six dancers were to be an additional illusion in which they would reflect the existing animatronics with a large mirror and cast that reflection into the scene. However before they began construction on the mirror they realized that the affect would create a seemingly infinite number of dancers instead of the intended twelve and imagineers chose to instead simply construct more animatronics.
- Although the animatronics move in the proper direction, their reflections as seen on the ride are dancing backwards. This is most notable in both the Disneyland and Disney World versions of the ride. In Tokyo Disneyland and Phantom Manor, however, the reflected "ghosts" are now dancing in the right direction, as their animatronics' motion is reversed from the original.