Live Lion King Show Coming to Disneyland Resort

Disney California Adventure park at the Disneyland Resort will soon premiere Tale of the Lion King, a “highly-theatrical” limited time outdoor musical production featuring live performers.

Found at the Palisades Stage, the story-theatre production features an 18-performer ensemble, the Storytellers of the Pride Lands, a traveling troupe of singers, dancers, and live drummers who specialize in retelling stories in a contemporary style.

Scenic, prop and costume designs celebrate the spirit of Africa as the storytellers present a new adaptation of the story seen first in Disney’s 1994 animated classic, now celebrating its 25th anniversary across Disney parks worldwide, and the Jon Favreau-directed re-imagining, in theaters July 19.

Many of the songs associated with the beloved classic will be represented with all-new musical arrangements, which Disney says creates a score “with elements we associate with the emotional sweep of the original compositions, yet focused on the vocal performances of the actors and music from the drummers to drive a unique percussive sound.”

Tale of the Lion King
(Photo: Disney Parks)

“This is a brand new adaptation of this wonderful story that we all love so dearly,” says Disney Parks Live Entertainment Creative Director Susana Tubert in a behind-the-scenes video.

“The approach that we’ve taken is that this is a story that was passed on from generation to generation and now it has come here to Disney California Adventure park. And so it’s a group of storytellers that we call the Storytellers of the Pride Lands, and they’ve come to share this ancestral story of how this little cub became a king.”

Tale of the Lion King boasts “a real true flavor of the authenticity of the spirit of Africa,” Tubert adds, promising the show will be “uniquely Disney and culturally effective.”

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“And this is important to us, that we bring the flavor, the spirit of the culture, in a way that moves people and also celebrates the great stories of the Walt Disney Company,” Tubert says.

Tale of the Lion King will run for a limited time at Disney California Adventure park beginning June 7. The Lion King, starring Donald Glover, Beyoncé, and James Earl Jones, roars into theaters July 19.