'Every normal day for me is a fun day and a very creative day, and I hit the ground running. I rise with the birds at between 5am and 6am, but have probably also woken in the middle of the night to scribble down an idea that has occurred to me while asleep, because I hate thinking I will forget any of the wonderful ideas that come to me in the middle of the night. I usually get onto my computer when I first get up because I find writing soothing and relaxing, which probably goes back to my days as an English literature and creative arts major at university. Writing has been a major part of my job and many productions I have directed over the course of my career. If I don't get up and turn on the computer, I listen to music - my other great passion. I wanted to teach when I left college, hence my majors. Despite Walt Disney not playing an instrument himself, he believed in music and loved marching bands, so everything I am involved with springs from the musical story of an event. I tell anyone who wants to direct that writing and music go hand in hand and are major components of what is required as a director, especially for an organisation such as the Walt Disney Company. I have a wonderful job working for global entertainment at Disney Creative Entertainment in Glendale, California. I am called an 'imagineer' because Walt [Disney] coined that wonderful term, which is a combination of 'engineer' and 'imagination' and he stuck them together and liked it. I feel an immediate connection with him and what he was all about with such a title. Once I'm at work it all breaks loose, so I guess multi-tasking best describes my job. I always wondered what that phrase meant and when I started working for Disney it immediately became clear. For instance, one minute I'm in a meeting about Hong Kong and trying to script the character dialogue for a parade and the next I'm in a meeting about Disney California Adventure and what the next creative idea is for that park, then in the afternoon I'm talking to Epcot [the Disney resort] in Florida regarding the new atmosphere programme and the new stage shows, and so the day continues. I work daily with a team of creative and exciting individuals who produce wonderfully original ideas. I have been doing this for 25 years, so I only hope I can continue to have this much fun for the next 25. I'm primarily responsible for atmosphere entertainment, so for 25 years I have been responsible for directing parades for the company. However, I now also have new and added responsibilities for events such as Mickey's Summer Blast [which launched in Hong Kong on July 7]. Sadly, this will probably be the last parade I will have such a close relationship with [Magness is taking on a broader, less hands-on role], so when I was presented with the opportunity to come here and direct the Mickey's Summer Blast parade for this new event, conceived and born in Hong Kong, I jumped at the chance. I know this wet and wild summer production will appeal to everyone, from toddlers to grandparents, and I really want to see the expressions of delight, happiness and laughter on guests' faces when the many surprises I have built into it start happening around them. It's rare that you get an opportunity to create something that belongs to only one park in the world. My average day is governed by a schedule, with a need to prioritise and co-ordinate creative processes - for example, what 'fires are burning' at any given time at any of the Disney locations around the world? What do the parks need today? I'm often in the middle of doing one thing and have to shift gear because I will get a call from, say, Disney Paris, which needs a brainstorming session around an event that was just turned on. You hone an ability to change gears at a minute's notice because it's such passionate work. You also have to be able to maintain or reignite that passion for whatever you're doing and whoever you're working with. Sometimes you're a leader and sometimes you're one of a team and you need to ask yourself what tools you need to draw on to get a particular job done. My visits to Hong Kong Disneyland have been wonderful learning experiences for me because, as well as all the kids who visit, there are many adults who love the park; part of my job is to cater to adult visitors. A good example of this is the Disney characters. Chinese visitors these days are usually familiar with Mickey Mouse but they may not be familiar with the many other Disney characters such as Pinocchio and the lessons children learn from his story - such as his nose growing longer each time he lies about something - so part of my brief is to think of ways to attract and educate adult guests about the many Disney characters. The best part of working for Disney is that, despite being involved in all the creative processes of any particular event at any location around the world, I am still constantly struck by the magical elements I did not expect to see. Disney still provides surprises even for people like me. I find it hard to end my work day but I have learned that rest is necessary, especially in a creative job. I do eventually leave the office and do my long commute home, where I read, listen to music, do things with my family and generally try and re-energise the body and brain in preparation for the challenges of the next day. I'm lucky to have a job where I can actually create magic for the enjoyment of others. Can you really think of any better job?'