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The Lion King Has Returned

photo by Joan Marcus

APRIL 19 TO JUNE 12 Get ready—or should we say “Be Prepared”—to prowl the pride lands as the beloved Disney musical The Lion King roars into Toronto for a limited engagement.

Based on the 1994 animated film of the same name, this enthralling stage show follows an exiled cub named Simba, who must undertake a journey of self-discovery in order to avenge the death of his father. The coming-of-age tale is set to the songs of Tim Rice and Elton John—with additional music by Hans Zimmer, Lebo M and Mark Mancina—including the memorable “Hakuna Matata” and “The Circle of Life.” But what really marks The Lion King as one of modern musical theatre’s most breathtaking achievements are its dazzling sets, colourful costumes, complex choreography and novel use of puppets. Against such backdrops as an elephant graveyard and a wildebeest stampede, actors embody giraffes, gazelles, hyenas and many other animals to bring the Serengeti’s menagerie to vivid life.

photo by Joan Marcus

These elements conspire to ensure the groundbreaking stage show remains enormously popular with audiences around the world. Among its accolades are six 1998 Tony Awards, including Best Musical, and status as one of the longest-running shows in Broadway history. More than a decade removed from its debut, the New York City production continues to draw sell-out crowds. (In Toronto, The Lion King’s original run began in 1999 and lasted almost four years.) Its success also earned director Julie Taymor a permanent place on theatre’s A-list. Innovative and inspiring, The Lion King is a not-to-be-missed theatrical event that’s bound to have the entire city singing the songs of the savannah.

Princess of Wales Theatre (300 King St. W.), Tuesday to Friday 7:30 p.m., Saturday
2 and 7:30 p.m., Sunday 1 and 6:30 p.m., $25 to $120; call 416-872-1212 or click here
to purchase tickets.

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