2017 is going to be a huge milestone year for Broadway as Disney’s award winning smash hit The Lion King – Musical will be celebrating its 20th roaring year on the Great White Way. Before its Fall 1997 New York City debut, the show did have a world premiere out of town tryout in Minneapolis, Minnesota in the summer of that very same year. Check out this rare half hour documentary about the show’s road to Broadway as it was gearing to open up at the Orpheum Theatre (Minneapolis, Minnesota). The National Tour has continued to stop at the same venue various times since it started traveling across North America.

THE LION KING premiered at the newly renovated New Amsterdam Theatre on October 15th, 1997 (in previews) and officially opened on November 13th, 1997. It transferred to its current home at the Minskoff Theatre (to make room for Mary Poppins – The Musical) on June 13th, 2006. Earlier this year, the show surpassed the original production of Cats the Musical as the 3rd longest running show in Broadway history. It is about to reach its 8,000th performance soon. It continues to sell out every night on Broadway, in London’s West End, across America, and around the world. It’s still the highest grossing Broadway production of all time, grossing more than $1 billion.

THE CIRCLE OF LIFE still lives on.

Before roaring on Broadway, “The Lion King” had a pre-Broadway tryout in Minneapolis. Here is a look at the magic of “The Lion King” before it was a legendar…

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