Kieran A Wilson Review

The Lion King, Playhouse Theatre, Edinburgh Review:

A theatrical masterpiece from start to finish!

***** 5 Stars

Since debuting in 1997, Julie Taymor’s The Lion King has engraved itself as a staple worldwide by becoming the top earning title in box office history. Following the powerful story of Simba as he journeys from wide-eyed cub to his destined role as King of the Pridelands, the award winning musical has now been seen by over 110 million people across the world – ranging from Broadway to West End. 

Based on the successful 1994 Walt Disney animated movie of the same name, the musical features music from Sir Elton John and Tim Rice – including the iconic ‘Circle Of Life’, which opens the show in a magical and spectacular fashion. Thandaziele Soni (Rafiki) captures the attention of the audience instantly with phenomenal vocals and a powerful stage presence, promising the audience of standards to come. 

It is Donald Holder’s remarkable lighting that steals the show – bringing each and every scene to life in its truest form. Breath taking sunrises, subtle shadows and colour shifts allow the audience member to feel transported into Africa, all without leaving the comfort of the Edinburgh Playhouse auditorium.

The main cast successfully navigate us through the simple storyline, but it is the jaw-dropping puppetry and costumes throughout which create a theatrical masterpiece from start to finish.

Richard Hurst (Scar), Matthew Forbes (Zazu), Stephenson Ardern-Sodje (Simba) and Nokwanda Khuzwayo (Nala) all lead the performance with strong voices and incredible characteristics, but it is Jean-Luc Guizonne (Mufasa) who truly manages to encapture the theatre-goer during his emotional, and faultless, performance of “They Live In You”.

Comical favourites Timon and Pumbaa are played by the perfectly cast Alan Michale and Carl Sanderson – providing the light comedy and laugh out loud moments required to keep the show moving along. Alongside this, a special shout-out must go to the talented and energetic hyenas portrayed by Rebacca Omogbehin (Shenzi), Simon Trinder (Banzai) and Owain Rhys Davis (Ed) for their impeccable comedic timing and overall performance. 

Despite a few technical glitches: the show far surpasses expectations – reminding us why Disney have such a respected and positive reputation for their productions worldwide. 

Beg, borrow or steal for one of the remaining tickets whilst pride rock is still in town.

Disney’s The Lion King, Playhouse Theatre, Edinburgh runs until Saturday 2nd July for tickets go to: Disney’s The Lion King Tickets | Edinburgh Playhouse in Edinburgh | ATG Tickets


1 thought on “The Lion King, Playhouse Theatre, Edinburgh Review:”

  1. Lion King is a musical worth seeing- saw it back in 2018 (luckily was in the orchestra at the aisle- the perfect seat for “Circle of Life”) A show no one should miss- no matter where you see it


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