The Lion King, Lyceum Theatre, London. March 2016.
Many years ago my sister and I saw this but at the time all we could manage were seats right up in the Gods and our fellow audience members had no idea how to behave in a theatre. We still shudder at the memory! Fast forward a few years and Mr Norfolkbookworm sees some of the cast from this perform on Blue Peter and decides he'd like to see the show, all we had to do then was wait for our nephew to be old enough to sit through a full length musical.
That day came and off we all went to London for our joint Christmas presents!
This time we were sat on the end of a row very near the front of the stalls and for my sister and I it was like seeing a completely different show. Those who hadn't seen it were also spellbound! The plot is similar to that of the Disney cartoon but there are just enough asides and modern quips to make the spectacle feel fresh, funny and up-to-date. The cast were uniformly superb and being so close to the stage and aisle just mean that we could see the artistry in puppets and the puppeteers whilst also believing totally that they were 'real'.
The magic of the production worked on all of our party, the sad bits were sad, the funny bits funny and the comeuppance of the bad characters well received, not a weak link at all. A week on and I am still humming the songs!
I'm also pleased to report that the people sitting near us were much better behaved this time!