More than 130 students from Episcopal High School will take the stage in the production of Disney’s “The Lion King JR,” starting Sunday at the school’s Visual and Performing Arts Center.
The 60-minute musical, designed for middle school-aged performers, is based on the Broadway production by Tony Award-winning director Julie Taymor and the 1994 Disney film.
Disney Theatrical Productions only recently began releasing the rights in 2015 for the long-running Broadway hit “The Lion King” as part of Music Theater International’s Broadway Junior collections.
Paige Gagliano, Episcopal performing arts director, will direct the cast and crew in the first production of Disney’s adaptation of “The Lion King JR” in the Baton Rouge and surrounding areas, a news release said.
Tricia Delony joins the production team as the music director along with set and lighting designer Louis Gagliano.
Under the direction of the production team, the cast brings to life an African savanna on stage with Simba, Rafiki and a cast of characters as they journey from Pride Rock to the jungle and back again in this inspiring coming-of-age tale. The play features classic songs from the 1994 film such as “Hakuna Matata” and the Academy Award-winning “Can You Feel the Love Tonight” along with other favorites penned for the Broadway production.
Many aspects of the production, including costumes and theatrical makeup, have been styled from the original Broadway hit, the release said.
“Preparing this show has been a wonderful process,” Gagliano said. “Each of us has grown in so many ways. It has been an exhilarating experience to witness these children come into their own with this challenging piece and reach levels that they never knew were possible.”
Showtimes are 2 p.m. Sunday, 6:30 p.m. Monday, 9:30 a.m. Wednesday and 6:30 p.m. Nov. 19.
All performances will be in the Visual and Performing Arts Center on Episcopal’s campus at 3200 Woodland Ridge Blvd.
Tickets are $13 and can be purchased at seatyourself.biz. Child tickets for the 9:30 a.m. Wednesday show are available for $5.