Lion King is currently playing on tour in Eugene, OR and moves to Spokane, WA

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PostHeaderIcon The Lion King is Theatrical Perfection, at its Best

Lion King Musical is constantly surprising in its storytelling methods, based on African traditions of drumming, chants and rituals. The show takes the audience into a mind-expanding world where dancers with swaying straw skirts and headdresses of foliage become grasslands, and cloud shapes manipulated on long sticks suddenly merge into a giant lion mask.

Brenda Mhlongo performs as Rafiki in 'The Circle of Life,' the opening number from 'The Lion King.'

Brenda Mhlongo performs as Rafiki in 'The Circle of Life,' the opening number from 'The Lion King.'

Elton John’s songs, and especially the additional music by Hans Zimmer and Lebo M, enhance the show with haunting choral and percussion work. Garth Fagan’s choreography adds engaging energy, from leaping gazelles to stalking lionesses.

The large cast requires alternates and understudies for most roles. At Thursday night’s official opening, Ntomb’Khona Dlamini made a lovable, irascible shaman, Rafiki, Kolton Stewart a cheeky Young Simba, Madai Monica Williams a sassy Young Nala, and Ta’Rea Campbell a feisty adult Nala.

The second act slows down a bit with several unnecessary songs and plot diversions, but it’s a small price to pay for such a life-affirming, lessons-giving piece, a true family musical.

“The Lion King” is a prime example of what musical theater can and should be.

Lion King is currently playing on tour in Durham Performing Arts Center, Durham-NC. Get $10 OFF on Lion King Durham NC Ticket Orders Over $350! Use Code AFF$10.

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