Keith James has a fascinating history in the themed entertainment industry. To be honest, I had not heard of Mr. James before I listened to this latest episode. In my opinion, one of the best parts about The Season Pass Podcast is the discovery that lies within its archives. Among the hours and hours of content you will always find that new story that you have never heard before.
Mr. James started as a stage manager in the early development of King’s Island. His career has taken him through numerous incredible projects. A few of these have included Carowinds, Canada’s Wonderland, Legoland Windsor, Australia’s Wonderland (Later known as Wonderland Sydney), Universal Orlando Resort, and many more spectacular venues.
I completely agree with Robert Coker that this era that Mr. James worked in was so special with his journey beginning at the start of some of the best projects in the history of the industry. Everything lined up for him at the exact right time in his professional and personal life, that is rare in any line of work or craft.
The most intriguing part of this episode for me is hearing about the work Keith James is doing at Jack Rouse Associates. Outside of their incredible entertainment work, JRA is applying the theme park mindset to different areas around the world. They have worked around the world with brands and sports, bringing us new, dynamic ideas and experiences. From the Inside CNN tour to Ferrari World Abu Dhabi, Keith James and his team have brought unique angles into these worlds.
I am so excited to see where this trend leads themed entertainment. The growth of this medium is spreading to so many different areas of our daily lives, from museums and sports complexes, to brand entities.
Hearing Mr. James’ reaction to receiving the Buzz Price Thea Award at the 2016 Thea Awards (Presented by the Themed Entertainment Association), was so inspiring to me; he’s humble and thankful for the working within the industry and the incredible people he’s partnered with.
After hearing this episode, and more about him, I couldn’t think of a person more deserving of being recognized for lifetime achievements.
The links to this episode are below! Enjoy!