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After over two months of rehearsals, the excitement in Manila is building as Elton and Tim Rice‘s first musical begins performances this weekend at The Theatre at Solaire. The first international tour of The Lion King kicks off in the Philippines before additional engagements in Singapore, Korea, Taiwan, and South Africa.

Disney‘s The Lion King runs from the 18th of March to May 6, 2018 and is presented by the Michael Cassel Group and and Concertus Manila in association with Disney Theatrical Productions. The show’s co-presenting sponsors in Manila are Globe and Visa.

The international tour, which will be performed in English, will launch in celebration of The Lion King’s 20th anniversary on stage and the title’s 25th global production.

The show’s director, costume designer and mask co-designer Julie Taymor said, “It is wonderful that these countries in Asia will be able to experience this new South African cast of The Lion King. They’re in for a tremendous treat as the soul of this music will come through these extraordinary performers. Asia is a big part of my life, having spent four years in Indonesia and travelled throughout many countries in the region. It is thrilling to bring this production back to a part of the world that has been a major inspiration in my life.”

Speaking ahead of auditions that were held in South Africa, Lebo M, who provided additional music, lyrics, vocal score and arrangements to The Lion King, commented, “This international tour will provide the opportunity for audiences around the world to witness this incredible production, featuring South Africa’s greatest talents.”

In Singapore, the production opens in June. It comes to South Korea in October, and Taiwan in 2019. It’s not yet known when The Lion King will play South Africa.

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