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Disney's The Lion King announces gala performance to celebrate 20 years in the West End

The Lion King, Can you Feel the Love Tonight. Photo credit: Dewynters Photography © Disney.

Theatre news

ON OCTOBER 19, 2019, Disney’s The Lion King celebrates 20 years in the West End, cementing its place in theatrical history as one of the most successful and beloved stage musicals of all time.

To celebrate this landmark achievement, The Lion King will hold a gala performance on Saturday, October 19 at the Lyceum Theatre, in support of the Elton John AIDS Foundation and the Royal Academy of Music. Tickets are now on sale and can be purchased from

Disney Theatrical Productions over the last two years provided scholarships to seven students from diverse backgrounds to study on the Academy’s Musical Theatre MA course, offering them the opportunity to nurture their talent and hone their performance skills. The scholarships illustrate both organisations’ ongoing efforts to redress the underrepresentation of BAME performers in musical theatre.

With an iconic score by original creative team member Sir Elton John, Disney Theatrical Productions is proud to support Elton John AIDS Foundation (EJAF) which aims to combat stigma, prevent infections, provide treatment and services, and motivate governments to end AIDS.

Since the UK premiere in London on Tuesday, October 19, 1999, The Lion King has entertained over 16 million theatregoers and remains the West End’s best-selling stage production and sixth longest-running West End musical of all time. An extraordinary team of more than 50 performers on stage and 100 crew off-stage present this global phenomenon every night to 2,200 people at the Lyceum Theatre, London.

To coincide with the 20th anniversary, the multi award-winning musical is also embarking on a second UK and Ireland tour, which opens at The Bristol Hippodrome on September 7, 2019 and will move on to the Edinburgh Playhouse from December 5, 2019. The production will also tour to Wales Millennium Centre in Cardiff from July 9, 2020, with further dates will be announced in due course.

Set against the majesty of the Serengeti Plains and to the evocative rhythms of Africa, Disney’s multi award-winning musical, brilliantly reimagined by acclaimed director Julie Taymor was transformed into a spectacular theatrical experience which tells the powerful and moving story of Simba – the epic adventure of his journey from wide-eyed cub to his destined role as King of the Pridelands.

A brand-new trailer, launched earlier this year, showcases the enormity, vibrancy and beauty of Julie Taymor’s outstanding design and direction. The video can be accessed here.

The Lion King is currently booking at the Lyceum Theatre until February 16, 2020 for individuals and May 30, 2020 for groups.

Image: The Lion King, Can you Feel the Love Tonight. Photo credit: Dewynters Photography © Disney.