THE LION KING Makes South American Premiere in Brazil Tonight
Disney's THE LION KING makes its South American premiere in São Paulo, Brazil. Presented by T4F (Time For Fun), the production opens tonight, March 26th, 2013 at the Teatro Renault. THE LION KING in São Paulo marks two firsts: the largest stage musical ever presented in Brazil and the first time the show has been performed in Portuguese. With this Brazilian production, THE LION KING will mark its 21st production worldwide, having played on six continents.
On March 24th, THE LION KING surpassed CATS to become the longest run in Japanese musical history, when the production celebrated its 8,450th performance in Japan. The record-breaking number combines the productions in Tokyo and the Japan national tour. Presented by Shiki Theatre Company, the Tokyo production opened on December 20th, 1998. With the national tour, which opened on April 18th 1999, the cumulative gross and attendance in Japan total $622 million and 10.5 million, respectively.
As it enters its 16th year, THE LION KING remains ascendant, 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 68 million people and, cumulatively, run a staggering 96 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 seven 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 16 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 worldwide production of THE LION KING, the highest number of concurrently running productions 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.
The show's director, costume designer and mask co-designer Julie Taymor continues to play an integral part in the show's ongoing success. The first woman to win a Tony Award for Direction of a Musical, Taymor has in recent years supervised new productions of the show in Las Vegas, Madrid and the UK tour and just completed casting the Brazilian production in São Paulo.
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."