For lack of a better word, breathtaking. The sets are vivid. Their rich colour and movable status pull the observer right into the action. The costumes are ornate, beautiful, and workable all at the same time. The makeup sets off the costumes, and one never really notices the fact that these are people acting out animal parts. You become so enthralled in the imagery of the whole thing.
This is a mix of dance, aerobics, and gymnastics all in one. The choreography is fascinating. The people move in rhythmic motion to deep, mesmerizing beats. The musical score is almost overpowering. Then you add these fantastically rich voices to the mix it is something out of this world. There are traditional African rhythms and percussion instruments all adding to the mesmerizing mixture of voice, dance and sound.
The musical is so much more believable with the 5 different languages used in the production. Among these languages are Zulu, Xhosa, and Swahili. There are so many facets that make the whole so unique and almost perfect. This production presents the struggle of a young cub in coming to grip with his place in the pride, and in life.
The young cub Simba must overcome many obstacles before he can understand what it is that makes him who he is. He needs to deal with adversity and strife, and finds not only friendship, but also romance along the way. It is truly a demonstration of the full circle of the life cycle. He also must come to grips with the fact that at some point in time we all lose the people that we love.
The cast does a brilliant job in presenting this and more to their audience. George Asprey, Shaun Escoffery, Brown Mkhize, Stephen Matthews, Nick Mercor, Keith Bookman, Andile Gumbi, and Narran Mclean are just part of the over 250 person cast. Julie Taymor well accomplishes the task of not only leading such a large cast, but also directing them. Garth Fagan is the choreographer of the show.
The Lion King has been at the Lyceum Theatre in Westminster for over ten years. The Lyceum seats over 2200, and with this show, there has not been a problem filling the seats. This is an experience for the whole family. Children will enjoy and marvel at the many stimulating sights and sounds of the Lion King. This is the show to see, so get The Lion King tickets as soon as possible!