Disney’s “The Lion King” North American Tour Celebrates 10 Triumphant Years on the Road

THE LION KING tour continues to reign across North America, celebrating 10 triumphant years on the road on Friday, April 27 in Orlando. Since launching in April 2002 in Denver, CO, THE LION KING North American tour has played nearly 6,000 performances during 112 engagements in 74 cities. The record-breaking tour has been seen by more than14 million theatergoers and grossed over $928 million to date.

With this milestone, THE LION KING becomes only the second show in theatrical history to produce five productions running 10 or more years. Phantom of the Opera is the other show.

Already in 2012, THE LION KING North American tour has shattered box office records in Baltimore, MD, Richmond, VA and just recently in New Orleans, LA where it became the highest-grossing theatrical production in the city's history. The award-winning musical is currently playing a return engagement in Orlando at the Bob Carr Performing Arts Center through May 13, 2012.

"It is profoundly gratifying to know that since launching in Denver at the Buell Theatre in April 2002, THE LION KING tour has been instrumental in bringing new audiences to the theatre across North America for the past 10 years," said Jack Eldon, Vice President, Domestic, Disney Theatrical Productions. "We are overwhelmed by the enduring response to the show and are enormously thankful to our audiences for their continued enthusiasm and support.   We look forward to sharing this theatrical phenomenon with more cities in the coming years."

Even after 10 years THE LION KING continues to visit new North American cities, premiering in 2012 in Miami, FL, Greenville, SC, Wichita, KS and Albuquerque, NM. The current schedule is listed below.

ABOUT THE LION KING

In its 15th year, THE LION KING remains ascendant, recently becoming the highest-grossing Broadway show in history. Since its Broadway premiere on November 13, 1997, 19 productions around the globe have been seen by more than 64 million people, grossed over $4.8 billion and, cumulatively, run a staggering 91 years. Produced by Disney Theatrical Productions (under the direction of Thomas Schumacher), THE LION KING is the sixth longest-running musical in Broadway history and only the second show to produce five productions running 10 or more years. Translated into seven different languages (Japanese, German, Korean, French, Dutch, Mandarin, Spanish), the show has been performed in 15 different countries on five continents. Continuing to reign as one of the most popular stage musicals in the world, THE LION KING can currently be seen on Broadway, on stages across North America, on tour in Japan, and in Tokyo, London's West End, Hamburg and Madrid. A UK tour launches in August of this year.

THE LION KING won six 1998 Tony Awards®: Best Musical, Best Scenic Design (Richard Hudson), Best Costume Design (Julie Taymor), Best Lighting Design (Donald Holder), Best Choreography (Garth Fagan) and Best Direction of a Musical, making Taymor the first woman in theatrical history bestowed with the honor. THE LION KING has also earned more than 70 major arts awards including the 1998 NY Drama Critics Circle Award for Best Musical, the 1999 Grammy® for Best Musical Show Album, the 1999 Evening Standard Award for Theatrical Event of the Year and the 1999 Laurence Olivier Awards for Best Choreography and Best Costume Design.

On stage, Taymor's creative vision blends elements of African art and Broadway artisanship to depict anthropomorphic animal characters. Taymor, along with designer Michael Curry, has created hundreds of masks and puppets for THE LION KING. The book has been adapted by Roger Allers, who co-directed The Lion King animated feature, and Irene Mecchi, who co-wrote the film's screenplay.

The Broadway score features Elton John and Tim Rice's music from The Lion King animated film along with three new songs by John and Rice; additional musical material by South African Lebo M, Mark Mancina, Jay Rifkin, Julie Taymor and Hans Zimmer; and music from "Rhythm of the Pride Lands," an album inspired by the original music in the film, written by Lebo M, Mark Mancina and Hans Zimmer. The resulting sound of THE LION KING is a fusion of Western popular music and the distinctive sounds and rhythms of Africa, ranging from the Academy Award®-winning song "Can You Feel The Love Tonight" to the haunting ballad "Shadowland."

Other members of the creative team include: Steve Canyon Kennedy (sound design), Michael Ward (hair and makeup design), John Stefaniuk (associate director), Marey Griffith (associate choreographer), Clement Ishmael (music supervisor) and Doc Zorthian (Production Supervisor). Anne Quart serves as associate producer.

For more information worldwide, visit LionKing.com.

NORTH AMERICAN TOUR SCHEDULE THROUGH OCTOBER 2012:

Orlando – Bob Carr Performing Arts Center

April 17 – May 13, 2012

Miami – Adrienne Arsht Center

May 17 – June 10, 2012

Greenville – Peace Center for Performing Arts

June 12 – July 8, 2012

Houston – Hobby Center for the Performing Arts

July 10 – August 12, 2012

St. Louis – Fox Theatre

August 15 – September 2, 2012

Wichita – Century II Concert Hall

September 4 – 30, 2012

Albuquerque – Popejoy Hall

October 2 – 28, 2012