Lyceum Theatre Archive

Current Show: Disney's The Lion King - the stage musical based on the animated movie.

After a break from theatre performances of nearly 58 years - interrupted only briefly in 1985 with a 12 week season of promenade performances of Tony Harrison's three part The Mysteries: The Navity, The Passion, Doomsday which transferred from the National Theatre - legit theatre finally returned to the Lyceum Theatre on 12 November 1996 with the first public preview of Gale Edwards' first major West End revival of the Andrew Lloyd Webber and Tim Rice musical Jesus Christ Superstar. The production starred a 25-year-old Steve Balsamo who had only taken up singing lessons to impress his girlfriend at the time because he was jealous of the adulation that the girl gave to rock stars. Gale Edwards explained that he was chosen for the title role in Jesus Christ Superstar out of the 1,000 plus people who had auditioned because "he had a natural charisma. He also has an astonishingly good rock'n'roll voice."

In June 1998 Hey Mr Producer! The Musical World of Cameron Mackintosh was presented for two unique performances, including a Royal Gala attended by Her Majesty The Queen and His Royal Highness the Duke of Edinburgh. The two concerts, which presented excerpts of shows that Cameron Mackintosh had produced over the years, where recorded for CD and video/DVD release. This was followed in September 1998 by the comedian Steve Coogan. Having enjoyed success on television with his various comedy characters such as Alan Partridge and Paul Calf, Coogan brought them to the stage in his show Steve Coogan: The Man Who Thinks He's It which enjoyed a very successful two-and-a-half month season, though a number of performances had to be cancelled due to Coogan getting acute laryngitis.

Partly due to its excellent sightlines for such a large West End theatre there had been a campaign particularly during the 1980s to bring the Lyceum Theatre back in use as a venue for ballet and dance, so it was rather fitting that for Christmas 1998, Birmingham Royal Ballet staged The Nutcracker, in a production choreographed by Peter Wright after Ivanov, for a short three week season. This was quickly followed at the end of January 1999 by a transfer from the National Theatre of Trevor Nunn's critically acclaimed revival of the Rodgers and Hammerstein's Oklahoma! which played for a strictly limited five month season before it made way for Disney's The Lion King in October 1999 and which continues to entertain children and adults alike to this day.