Festival of the Lion King is a live show based on what is arguably Disney's most successful animated film to date - The Lion King. Although The Lion King has become a worldwide smash as both a film and a Broadway musical, the Festival of the Lion is a different incarnation of the beast, and one that is sure to thrill all fans of Simba and friends.
The imposing 2,250-seat Theatre in the Wild hosts the 28 minute attraction. Poking its thatched roof high above the treetops of Adventureland, the Theatre in the Wild dominates much of the landscape of this area of Hong Kong Disneyland. Indeed, this Cameroonian grand ceremonial house-inspired theatre is one of the chief ways that this Adventureland is architecturally different to the other Adventurelands around the world. This alone sets it apart from its namesake in Walt Disney World Florida's Animal Kingdom. With a hydraulic stage, theatre lighting and a 'theatre in the round' style setting, this is a Broadway-quality musical that is both technically impressive and entertaining as well.
Another key difference to the Floridian version is that this Festival of the Lion King takes a far more narrative approach to The Lion King story. Using four giant rolling stages - each named for an animal - Simba's story is told through performers in elaborate costumes, frenetic dancing, ariel acrobatic and fire knife dancers, ballet, comedy and music from the film. Songs include "I Just Can't Wait to be King," "Be Prepared," "Hakuna Matata," the Oscar-winning "Can You Feel the Love Tonight," and of course, "Circle of Life."
The stages themselves are something to behold. Sitting in two corners are the centrepieces of the show: Simba sitting on Pride Rock, and an elephant with a swaying trunk. What else but a giraffe could occupy the third stage? Last, but certainly not least, we have everybody's favourite meerkat and warthog - Timon and Pumba - occupying the fourth stage. As mentioned, the are giant rolling stages, so there is no change you are going to miss seeing the.
The show is primarily in English, although performers are joined by two Chinese monkeys at various stages to provide Cantonese commentary for guests. Putonghua surtitles are available on screens visible from the last 7 rows of each seating section.
Festival of the Lion King is a FASTPASS attraction, meaning that if you can't stand waiting in the regular line, then you can jump the queue by hopping in the FASTPASS lane. Simply scan your park tickets into the FASTPASS machine and you will be given a FASTPASS that allows you to return within a one hour window and skip the regular queue. Perfectly understandable in a 2,250-seat theatre! Learn more about the wonders of FASTPASS right here.
||12 September 2005|
|Ride Type||Stage Show|
|Ideal For||Everyone! Some scary elements for little kids|
|Ride Time||28:00 minutes (approx.)|
|Wait Times||Set times. See official site for details.|
|It's a bit like...||Golden Mickeys|
|Thrill Level||Medium to Fun|
|HKDL Source Rating||Grand spectacle, well staged|
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