Wellington Street, London
Previewed: 24 September 1999
Opened: 19 October 1999
Booking up to: 30 May 2020
Buy tickets:Buy tickets online
Nearest Tube: Covent Garden
Monday no show
Tuesday at 7.30pm
Wednesday at 2.30pm and 7.30pm
Thursday at 7.30pm
Friday at 7.30pm
Saturday at 2.30pm and 7.30pm
Sunday at 2.30pm
Runs 2 hours and 35 minutes including one interval
Tue to Thu: £? to £?
Fri and Sun: £? to £?
Saturday: £? to £?
Premium Seating also available
(plus booking fees if applicable)
Disney's spectacular stage musical The Lion King in London - now in it's record-breaking 20th year in the West End ... SEE IT NOW ... REMEMBER IT FOREVER!
Set against the majesty of the Serengeti Plains and the evocative rhythms of Africa, Disney's multi award-winning musical The Lion King will redefine your expectations of theatre. A spectacular visual feast, this adaptation of Disney's much-loved film transports audiences to a dazzling world that explodes with glorious colours, stunning effects and enchanting music. At its heart is the powerful and moving story of Simba - the epic adventure of his journey from wide-eyed cub to his destined role as King of the Pridelands.
"The Lion King is an indisputable triumph - in the stage-version, at least, because Disney has entrusted the show to a director (Julie Taymor) and a creative team with exceptional imagination and a rare grasp of theatrical resources. You are gripped from the first scene: a magnificent rippling sunrise, the chanting of a much-bedaubed and bedizened shaman, fabricated animals trooping down the aisle and flocking across the stage... It is so well done that you wonder where they can go from there, but scene after scene proves equally impressive... What makes the spectacle so entrancing is that we are invited to enter into it as a game - to enjoy the means by which it is produced rather than goggling as the simulated reality... At every stage we are made aware of the actor behind an animal... The visual splendours of the show are never allowed to swamp the drama. The storyline remains clear and compelling... The Lion King is superlative entertainment, and puts most other mega-musicals in the shade." The Sunday Telegraph
"The haunting chants for the grassland and the lionesses are by South African musician Lebo M, who also co-wrote four songs, with Mark Macina and three others. The wonderful Shadowlands, with its blend of European and African rhythms and orchestration, is their best. The sets are by the Zimbabwe-born Richard Hudson: their sense of broad spaces, high, cloud-fringed skies, and the brilliant reds, oranges, browns and deep yellows of the African landscape will haunt you for weeks to come. But it is finally Julie Taymor's show. She has directed it, designed the stunning costumes, and collaborated with Mark Curry on the even more stunning masks and puppets... The Lion King is a wonderful, wonderful musical: thrilling, warm-hearted, inventive and original. It has a pulsating, teeming sense of animal life effortlessly at home in its rich, dangerous natural habitat, and a seamless blend of story and spectacle." The Sunday Times
"I could see the show a dozen times more and still not tire of the spectacular opening sequence. This is probably the most magical beginning in the history of the musical theatre. With music from Elton John and Tim Rice and pulsating African rhythmns throughout, the entire experience is one not to be missed. If you love the Disney movie, you'll love the show. Even if you have never seen the movie - hasn't everybody? - you'll still love the show. No matter your age, treat you and yours to tickets for this royally entertaining event. And don't worry if you have to wait-this King will reign and reign!" The News of the World
"The Lion King is a ravishing spectacle, the cat's whiskers no less, and an unmissable treat for the whole family... I can hardly wait to see it again or, even more tantalising, to see the effect of the breathtakingly brilliant opening few moments of pure animal magic (which the rest of the show never supersedes) on the faces of my children. A more imaginatively conceived carnival of creatures is impossible to conjure. There's a person in each leg of the massive elephant and an enchanting tiny calf running behind it; the giraffes walk on stilts, a towering hat suggesting the neck and head; three bounding antelopes leap with each turn of the wheels of a tricycle; Zazu, the accident-prone toucan, is sometimes an elaborate earthbound glove puppet, sometimes a paper kite at the end of a wire attached to a long pole, fluttering among other bright and beautiful beasts of the air... Julie Taymor's stunning, jaw-dropping designs never attempt to disguise the human operator beneath. Indeed, she goes to great lengths to display the artifice and the mechanics. A mask or headdress begins an idea which the costume develops and is then continued in movement which delightfully evokes the scampering, stalking, slinking or prowling nature of the beast. Looking east to Asia for its inspiration, the show is a celebration of the art and illusion of the most ancient theatrical techniques - of masks, puppetry and shadow-play. Some of the effects have an exquisite, arresting simplicity: the mourning lionesses pull white ribbons of tears from the eyes of their masks; a waterfall is a cascade of shimmering silk; the famine that ravages the savannah is vividly illustrated by a waterhole, a circle of silvery material that shrinks as it is pulled across the stage by an actor, a skeleton of an antelope in each hand, another on his head. Where the production falls short is in the acting, which is tame, two-dimensional stuff... Visually, however, it is inspired, and never more so than when flashing fishy shapes in a watery wilderness assemble to create the ghostly face of Mufasa to remind Simba to avenge his death. A thrilling coup de theatre and the highlight of an intensely theatrical experience." The Mail on Sunday
Disney's The Lion King in London previewed from 24 September 1999 and opened on 19 October 1999.