“…we are all connected in the great circle of life…”

The Lion King triumphantly returns to Atlanta, its third stop on its national tour, now until January 28th.

s3buyizama Theatre Talk: The Lion King

Buyi Zama as “Rafiki” in THE LION KING North American Tour. ©Disney. Photo by Joan Marcus.

We’ll just keep it simple, this show is impeccable. That’s it! It deserves to be the world’s #1 musical, because it is a show that truly transcends what it means to be musical. It takes that 1994 Disney classic, and turns it into a sensational journey into the African Pride Lands. As a whole, the entire show was mesmerizing. Using the colors and textures of authentic African design to bring the story to life were astounding. My favorite takeaway was the utilization of articulated puppets and overhead masks. Using costumes like these can be incredibly complicated, but puppet supervisor, Michael Reilly, did a fantastic job keeping Julie Taymor and Michael Curry’s original visions alive onstage. With the articulated costumes, like Zazu, there are many pieces that go into minor character details like blinking or wing flapping. Other costumes like Scar and Mufasa, use finger controls to allow the masks to become more lifelike. It was incredible to see. You get to see the humanization of these well-known characters, and I think that’s so important.

s4 nia holloway nala c2a9disney photo by deen van meer Theatre Talk: The Lion King

Nia Holloway as “Nala,” Buyi Zama as “Rafiki” and “The Lionesses” in THE LION KING North American Tour. ©Disney. Photo Credit: Deen van Meer.

Nia Holloway (Nala) portrays that humanization very well. She is a Norcross native and is a force to be reckoned with. When she sang her first solo on stage, I teared up. I know, I’m an emotional kid…but still! She was magnificent. She was only one of the amazing cast members that graced the Fox Theatre stage. Everyone from Simba (Gerald Caesar) to the ensemble that flew us to Africa in almost two hours contributed to this great circle of life.

Don’t miss The Lion King, folks. This is a magical experience that will leave you breathless. Get your tickets here. Hakuna Matata!





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