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Hakuna Matata: 'Lion King' heads to Shea's for monthlong stay

The circle of life is circling back to Buffalo.

The theatrical adaptation of "The Lion King," one of the most technically and visually innovative musicals of the past quarter-century, returns to Shea's Performing Arts Center this week for a monthlong run. It last played Buffalo in 2011.

The production, based on the 1994 animated film and conceived by director Julie Taymor, is a spectacle driven by puppetry, costumes and masks as much as by music. It has been widely praised by audiences and critics alike for its gasp-inducing stagecraft, which transforms an empty theater into a sun-drenched African Savannah teeming with wildlife.

Taymor and her creative team's innovation has been richly rewarded: "The Lion King" is the third longest-running show on Broadway and the most lucrative in its history.

The show also features choreography by Rochester-based artist Garth Fagan, with music and lyrics by Elton John, Tim Rice and many others. Ticket buyers should note that the production's final performance, originally scheduled for 6:30 p.m. Jan. 7, has been canceled.

"The Lion King": Opens in previews on Dec. 13 and runs through Jan. 7, 2018 in Shea's Performing Arts Center, 646 Main St. Tickets are $30 to $130 for the Dec. 13 preview performance and $40 to $150 for the remainder of the run. Call 847-1410 or visit


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