Why See Lion King?
A West End institution for all the family
This vastly successful re-imagining of Disney's 1994 continues to conquer after nearly two decades. Conjuring up the African savannah in all its grand, majestic beauty, using elaborate costuming, handsprung puppetry, and soaring African melodies, let the spectacle sweep you from the grey streets of London to theatrical bliss!
First seen on Broadway in 1997, The Lion King began its London reign the next year at the Lyceum theatre, its home to this day. A multiple award-winner, it has now racked up 70 (and counting) worldwide productions and boasts audience numbers in the 100s of millions, eager to experience its legendary stagecraft.
WHAT IS IT ABOUT?
Affectionately dubbed "Hamlet with fur", we follow the trials of a young lion prince called Simba, who one day is destined to rule over the sun-drenched Pride Lands, as the Lion King. After the murder of his father by his treacherous uncle, Scar, Simba is convinced of his own guilt in this, and runs away from his pride, in self-imposed exile.
Rescued by an unlikely pair of friends; Timon the meerkat, and Pumbaa the flatulent warthog, both themselves exiles, Simba grows up to enjoy life, whilst not quite escaping the trauma of his past. When Scar's rule threatens the future of the Pride Lands, will Simba finally accept his responsibilities of adulthood to return and stake his claim to the throne and restore harmony?
CREATING THE SHOW
The stunning sets and African-themed costuming of The Lion King is the result of extensive research into diverse cultural influences to recreate the rich colours and vast expanses of the African savanna.
A cast of 40 singers and dancers transform themselves into anthropomorphic animals from the ubiquitous lions, with handsprung manes and masks, through to elegant puppeteered cheetahs and giraffes. The music of the show takes strong influence from African music, specifically Lebo M, whilst carrying a classic quality from Elton John and Tim Rice, who wrote the original score.
Previews from: 24 September 1999
Opening night: 19 October 1999
The Lion King is suitable for and aimed at children aged 7 and above. Children younger can be admitted but must occupy, and pay for a seat, but should they become restless, and/or cause a disturbance, they will be asked to leave and there is no refund. Children under 3 are NOT permitted at all. Customers should also be aware that strobe lighting is used several times during the performance.
Children aged three years and older are admitted providing they can sit in their seats and not to be a distraction for other members of the audience. Everyone must have a valid ticket. Accompanying adults will be asked to remove any noisy children.
2 hours and 40 minutes with a 15 minute intermission.
And before you stop reading
During half term and school holidays there will be an additional Wednesday 14:30 matinee
Cast and Creative
George Asprey as Scar
Shaun Escoffery as Mufasa
Gugwana Dlamini as Rafiki
Gary Jordan as Zazu
Jamie McGregor as Timon
Mark Roper as Pumbaa
Nicholas Afoa as Adult Simba
Janique Charles as Adult Nala
Melone M'kenzy as Shenzi
David Blake as Banzai
Barnaby Thompson as Ed
Tia Murrell, Avive Savannah Williams, Monae Wilson and Eva Yong as Young Nala
Zion Gardner, John Madondo, Samuel O'Loughlin and Kai Plummer-Walrond as Young Simba
Jamie Golding as Standby Timon, Zazu and Pumbaa
Garry Lake as Standby Scar and Pumbaa
Ensemble & Swing
Etian A. Almeida, Lila Anderson, Merryl Ansah, Thanduxolo Booi, Gabriel Brasilo, Kanika Carr, Donna Clovis, Azola Dlamini, Kuan Frye, Kevin Fullinck, Deborah Godchaser, Sandile Gontsana, Du-Wayne Hinds, Makoto Iso, Wilson Kiiru, Tramaine Lamy, Lamoi Leon, Francsico Lins, Stephanie Tsz Mann Lo, Nonhlanhla Makahathini, Sadia McEwen, Phumlani Mkhize, Keitumetse Molea, Daniel Monteiro, Ayden Morgan, Rutendo Mushonga, Crystal Nicholls, Nosipho Nkonqa, Darcel Osei, Lucinano Santos Souza, Poseleto Sejosingoe, Mlungisi Shabalala, Kristof Skhosana, Shannon Taiwo and Matthieu Vinetot.
Music by Elton John
Lyrics by Tim Rice
Book by Roger Allers & Irene Mecchi
Costume Design by Julie Taymor
Directed by Julie Taymor
Choreographed by Garth Fagan
Scenic Design by Richard Hudson
Lighting Design by Donald Holder
LAURENCE OLIVIER AWARDS 1999
Best Choreography (Garth Fagan)
Best Costume Design (Julie Taymor)
EVENING STANDARD AWARD 1999
Theatrical Event of the Year
IVOR NOVELLO MUSIC AWARDS 2000
International Achievement in Musical Theatre
CRITICS CIRCLE THEATRE AWARD 1999 (UK)
Best Designer (Julie Taymor & Richard Hudson)
VISIT LONDON AWARD 2006
VISIT LONDON AWARD 2007
What we thought
epic Wonderful MAGICAL
Bringing such an epic landscape to life on the stage is quite a feat of creative skill that has yet to be matched anywhere else on stage.
Bringing such an epic landscape to life on the stage is quite a feat of creative skill that has yet to be matched anywhere else on stage...Read full review
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