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The Lion King on Broadway
The Lion King

The Lion King

New York, NY
A Disney classic is now a Broadway classic — with all the magic included.

About The Lion King

Join the circle of life at The Lion King on Broadway. This hit musical roared to life in 1997 and has ruled Broadway ever since at the Minskoff Theatre. Get The Lion King tickets on TodayTix.

If you love the classic Disney movie, come see The Lion King live, which brings the story to life in a whole new way. All your favorite Elton John and Tim Rice songs from the film — including “I Just Can’t Wait to Be King,” “Hakuna Matata,” and the Oscar-winning song “Can You Feel the Love Tonight?” — are there. But there's also breathtaking, award-winning puppetry that brings the wildlife of the African desert alive, and the colorful safari spectacle is sure to thrill children and adults alike. With its basis in a familiar story and 25-year track record of Broadway success, The Lion King is a perfect first show for children or anyone looking to experience a royal hit of a musical. A New York Theatre Guide review calls the show “a timeless piece of artistry and magical allure.”

In The Lion King musical, Simba has been named the heir to the throne of the Pride Lands, much to the chagrin of Scar, King Mufasa’s jealous younger brother. So Scar hatches a plan to manipulate the young prince and his playmate Nala so he can inherit the throne before Simba comes of age. Despite his caretaker Zazu’s protests, Simba ventures outside of his father’s realm, finding himself trapped in a wildebeest stampede of Scar’s making.

While Mufasa saves his son’s life, he can’t save his own, as Scar tosses him off the cliff into the mass of sprinting animals. Simba retreats, blaming himself for his father’s death, and meets the comedy kings of the jungle, Timon and Pumbaa. While he plans to stay with them and abandon his royal future, the soothsayer Rafiki knows the young prince’s destiny and is determined to bring him back where he belongs.

Get ready to feel the love tonight at The Lion King! Get tickets to The Lion King in New York on TodayTix now.

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Tell Me More

The story of The Lion King has become classic in its own right, but it’s actually based on an even older tale. Its plot is loosely based on Shakespeare’s tragic play Hamlet, in which a young prince’s uncle kills his father to take the throne for himself. This version is an uplifting, family-friendly musical, though, so it has a much happier ending than that play!

The Lion King first came onto the scene as a 1994 Disney film, which won two Academy Awards and a Best Picture Golden Globe Award. The voice cast featured lots of theatre actors, including Matthew Broderick as Simba, Nathan Lane as Timon, Whoopi Goldberg as Shenzi, and James Earl Jones as Mufasa in one of his most iconic voice roles.

When the stage adaptation premiered three years later, under visionary director Julie Taymor, it was unlike anything that had ever been on a Broadway stage before. The Lion King features hundreds of expertly handmade, life-size puppets and masks, designed by Taymor, which feature animal-like details while still showing the actors’ faces. The design was an innovation in stagecraft, and Taymor won both directing and costume design Tony Awards for her work. The show won an additional four Tonys in 1998, including Best Musical.

The stage show also builds on the original movie with additional music by Lebo M, Mark Mancina, Jay Rifkin, Taymor, and Hans Zimmer. So in addition to the fan-favorite tunes, you’ll hear new songs on stage that you won’t get from the movie.

More than anything, the The Lion King musical is a classic story of family that will speak to anyone who has ever been a parent or a child.

What to Watch For

  • Six indigenous African languages are sung and spoken in the show: Swahili, Zulu, Xhosa, Sotho, Tswana, and Congolese.
  • The Lion King on Broadway uses 232 puppets, including full-sized, shadow, and rod puppets. Did you know that it took 37,000 hours to build all of the puppets, which encompass 25 species of animals?
  • The opening lyrics of “The Circle of Life” in The Lion King in the African language Swahili translate in English to: “Here comes a lion, father / Oh yes, it’s a lion.” The Swahili lyrics are, "Nants ingonyama bagithi baba / Sithi uhm ingonyama."
  • Most of the main characters’ names are Swahili in origin, too. “Simba,” for example, means “the lion” in Swahili, and “Mufasa” loosely translates to “king.”
  • The puppets in The Lion King vary in size from five inches (the trick mouse at the end of Scar’s cane) to 18 feet tall (the giraffes in “I Just Can’t Wait To Be King").
Run time

2hr 30min (incl. intermission)

Start date

October 15th, 1997


Family, Musicals


Minskoff Theatre


Guests under the age of 2 are not permitted in the theatre.

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