Jeffrey Kuhn Boards Broadway's THE LION KING as 'Zazu'; Tshidi Mayne Rejoins Cast
Broadway's landmark musical event THE LION KING, the fifth longest-running show in Broadway history, welcomes Jeffrey Kuhn, in the role of Zazu, and Tshidi Manye, who rejoins the production as Rafiki.
Kuhn returns to THE LION KING as the prim and proper hornbilled bird, Zazu. Manye, Broadway's longest-running Rafiki, returns to the Broadway production, having recently spent four months playing the role to critical acclaim on the North American Tour.
Jeffrey Kuhn has been seen in the Broadway productions of The 39 Steps, Spamalot, Wicked, Assassins, Ragtime, and Off-Broadway in John Guare's 3 Kinds of Exile (Atlantic). Kuhn's regional credits include An Enemy of the People (Centerstage), Next Fall (St. Louis Rep), Romeo & Juliet (Shakespeare Theatre), Sea of Tranquility (Old Globe), Love's Labour's Lost, A Midsummer Night's Dream, Antony & Cleopatra and many others (Stratford Festival), Barrington, Alliance, Pittsburgh Public, and Cincinnati Playhouse. Tour: The Who's Tommy.
Tshidi Manye toured Europe and Japan with M. Bongeni Ngema in the hit musical Sarafina. She made her Broadway debut in THE LION KING in 2004. Other stage credits include Rafiki in the Toronto production, Daughter of Nebo by Hillary Bletcher, Mfowethu by Gibson Kente, and The Stick by Aubrey Sekhabi. Manye is honored to have performed with legendary artists such as Paul Simon, David Byrne, Hugh Masekela, Jabu Khanyile, and Vusi Mahlasela. Albums: Sisters of Joy, Wildflower.
Produced by Disney Theatrical Productions, THE LION KING is playing at Broadway's Minskoff Theatre (200 West 45th Street). For tickets, show information and performance schedule, call Ticketmaster's Disney on Broadway hotline at 866-870-2717 or visit online, LionKing.com.
In its 16th year, THE LION KING remains ascendant; it is the highest-grossing Broadway show in New York history and one of the most popular stage musicals in the world. Since its Broadway premiere on November 13, 1997, 21 global productions have been seen by more than 70 million people and, cumulatively, run a staggering 104 years. Produced by Disney Theatrical Productions (under the direction of Thomas Schumacher), THE LION KING is only the second show in history to generate five productions worldwide running 10 or more years. Translated into eight different languages (Japanese, German, Korean, French, Dutch, Mandarin, Spanish and Portuguese), productions of THE LION KING can currently be seen on Broadway and on tour across North America, in Tokyo and on tour in Japan, in London's West End and on tour throughout the UK, and in Hamburg, Madrid and Sao Paolo. To date, THE LION KING has played 98 cities in 17 countries on every continent except Antarctica.
Among the most successful titles in entertainment history, with a cumulative gross in excess of $5 billion, the stage production of THE LION KING has already earned more than the biggest hit films in movie history: more than the Lord of the Rings trilogy combined, more than the six Star Wars films combined, and more than Avatar and Titanic, the two highest-grossing films in movie history, combined.
The award-winning musical will celebrate a new milestone in December 2013 when it returns to Australia, making it the tenth concurrent worldwide production of THE LION KING, the highest number of productions running at any one time in the show's history.
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. 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.