San Fran's 'Lion King' surpasses junior's expectations
Handcrafted costumes enhance performers' character appearance
Junior Kaitlyn King shares her experience of seeing "The Lion King" play at the Orpheum Theater in San Francisco, Dec. 7.
Sitting in the cathedral-style Orpheum Theater, watching one of my favorite childhood movies transformed into a play, turned out to be an outstanding experience. The Lion King play was so mind blowing that words cannot express how incredible it was to watch.
The plot is about a young lion, Simba (Jelani Remy), who is convicted of killing his father, Mufasa (Dionne Randolph), and ends up running away only to find allies, Timon (Nick Cardileone) and Pumbaa (Ben Lipitz).
Meanwhile, Simba's evil uncle Scar (Derek Smith) becomes king, causing destruction in the kingdom. Years later, Simba returns to take back the throne which is rightfully his.
Other than seeing The Phantom of the Opera, this was only my second time seeing a Broadway play. How the play turned out completely surpassed my expectations.
The beginning of the play started with the well-known song, The Circle of Life, with one of the singers on stage and two others on either side of the theater. Their modulated voices rang throughout the theater as they walked up and down the aisles.
The live music and band was so entralling to listen to. Throughout some of the songs they mixed in the African language, so there was an assortment of musical tones. Despite a few added on songs, the music stuck with the real soundtrack, which to me made it even better.
The costumes were stunningly made. Each one was created in a unique handcrafted way. The performers' outfits portrayed the African grasses, as well as animals like elephants, giraffes and gazelles.
One of the animals that stood out to me was the cheetah. The way the performer moved her body, the wooden animal would replicate it; it was absolutely mesmerizing to watch.
"I would say that this is a play that would captivate all ages. Even though it is family friendly, it is also very entertaining for adults because of the humor and outstanding theatrics." --Kaitlyn King, '14
At one point during the performance, some of the actors came out holding long sticks with paper birds attached to the ends and as they would swing them across the audience, the birds created a feeling that actual birds were flying.
I fell in love with every character, that afterwards it was hard to distinguish which was my favorite. Simba and Nala's (Syndee Winters) relationship when they were young was absolutely adorable. They portrayed the characters perfectly. But then there were the hyenas. Their costumes were identical to the ones in the movie and their voices were so spot on that I could have thought they were the same.
The only thing that was kind of odd was that the characters playing the lions would roar themselves, which ended up sounding kind of funny. Although, I would say that it was unique and different to experience.
I would say that this is a play that would captivate all ages. Even though it is family friendly, it is also very entertaining for adults because of the humor and outstanding theatrics.
The play was absolutely astonishing and spectacular. If I was a play critic, I would have given this play five stars for extrodinary acting and overall stupendous dramatics.
For more entertainment, read the Dec. 17 article, 'The Hobbit: An Unexpected Journey' masters special effects (VIDEO).