Date- March 8th, 2009
Time- 1:00PM (Sold out)
Venue- The Paramount Theater (Seattle)
Hello everybody, I thought I'd give my review of show up here in the northwest.
Before the review, a little backstory.
Plain and simple, my parents and I have never seen the show before...and I have desperatly been wanting to see this for a very long time, but I honestly thought I wouldn't be able to see this show today. Anytime I checked on the Paramount website there were pretty much no tickets availible for any day, what made matters worse is I could only go today since it's last day where both my parents are off.
Thankfully, I stayed pretty much glued to the site last week and with a bit of more thorough scearching I found tickets for today.
Now onto the review, which is going to be split into several sections.
Before the show-
Before the show I'd say we arrived at a good time, when we got there the place just opened up for the crowd outside so we were able to get a snack and several souviners before it got really crowded.
I give kudos to the catering company providing the snacks since the Chicken Curry flatbread I had was very nice, and the non-alcoholic "Simba's Pride" drink was good as well.
I'm also very happy the show had two souviner stands in the lobby, it was far easier getting things compared to two year ago when I saw Spamalot there. (They only had one souviner stand which made things quite a pain.)
As for where we sat, we were down on the main floor in section 1, row X. We were sitting at a bit of an angle, but it didn't really matter since there's really no bad seat in the house.
Though there was one thing that puzzled me, at the doors there were a couple of signs explaining that if your not in the theater when the first and second act begins...you'll have to wait ten minutes before you can be escorted in. Though I quickly realized the reason why when the show began...
The reason? Well when the show starts, there's a procession of animals going down the aisles and up onto the stage. It certainly took me off guard hearing some voices, looking to my side and seeing a rhino walk right by!
From the beginning to the end of the first act, I was hooked all the way. Circle of Life was a great way to start things off and it seemed almost overwhelming to take it all in, the moment people were wowed by the giraffes and cheetahs another animal came in and surprised us.
By the end of the song I got chills and found tears in my eye already, and by then I knew I was probably going to go away loving this.
For me there were so many things to marvel at, the puppets and the puppeteers, all the various technical and lighting elements that a geek like me can appreciate. I loved the use of shadow puppets in the show, I loved all the various elements that were used in the Stampede scene. I also liked the surge of hyenas that paraded down the aisles and onto the stage for "Be Pepared" as others did for "Circle of Life".
Musicwise, I had no complaints. One song that stood out for me was "They Live in You." It's a haunting piece that works really well with the story and the show.
By the end of the first act, the only word that came out of my mouth was "Wow".
Normally I wouldn't have the intermission as part of the review, but I felt the need to since I gotta give the theater ushers for skillfully organizing a line for the ladies room. Even though my Mom was able to go before the surge of other women, the ushers were able to keep things going so no one missed getting back to their seats.
Oh yes, before the second act I was able to head all the way down to the stage and geek out over the orchestra pit and the stage itself which was painted specially for the show.
Once again we have more performers in the aisles for "One By One", it's a nice little uplifting song which certainly is a contrast when all the beautiful colors and birds are replaced with buzzards, a very bleak black and white color and skeleton antelope (A very cool and rather creepy touch.)
Just like the first act, it had a bunch of technical elements for me to go nuts over. The river scene was nicely done and I love the lighting that was used on the forest trees for when Simba meet's Rafiki. Oh yes, I freakin' love how they did Mufasa for that scene.
As for music, one big standout was "Shadowland". Now this is probably one of my favorite pieces of music in the movie (It's just instrumental though), I still very much liked the song in the show. Though I will say it was LOUD, hands down the loudest song in the show.
When all was said and done and Circle of Life was performed once more, I still got chills and teared up once again (I believe I did that 3 or 4 times throughout the show.)
I looked back on saying that I knew I was probably going to go away loving this, and the show didn't prove me wrong.
I was truly blown away from this show, and I'm flat out estatic I was finally able to see it. (Same with my Parents.)
I can also say I'm quite happy I'm probably going to Vegas this summer, apparently Mandalay Bay is going to have the Lion King..and it's the full show with intermission. No cutting of the show like several other Broadway shows in Vegas.
This is certainly a show I won't forget, and it's also one I certainly want to see again in the future.