Saturday, 18 May 2013
El Rey León
Madrid for the weekend! And a much long anticipated trip to see The Lion King!
I've been wanting to see this show ever since it first came out, but could never afford the tickets, or it was just sold out.
The arts industry in Spain is being crippled by the recent increase in tax from 8% to 21% on cultural events. Coupled with funding cuts from the local and state government, theatres have had to change their schedules to favour cheaper productions and the Prado is now open 7 days a week in effort to make up for budget cuts.
The Lion King is one of the only shows to still play to a full house and I would highly recommend you go to see it!
I was so excited, and it really didn't disappoint! The costumes were innovatively imaginative and the cast blew me away. The set design was genius! The scene with the stampede, shortly before Mufasa dies (sniff) was both beautiful and terrifying. Their use of perspective to create the illusion of the stampede coming straight towards you creates a scene just as intense as the giant rock rolling behind Indiana Jones.
I sat in the fourth row from the stage; possibly one of the best seats I've ever actually paid for. I could see every facial expression, every costume detail, every bead of sweat.
They were able to draw every emotion, elicit every Disney aspect combined with the artistic direction of a stage performance.
Of course, being in Madrid, the show was in Spanish. I've seen the Lion King movie, I know it pretty much off by heart but it delighted me with some adaptations. Some to make it more "Spanish" including a scene where to distract the hyenas, Timone and Pumba dance Sevillanas!
While my Spanish isn't good enough to understand every thing they said, watching the show in a different language is a lot like panning for gold: for the bits you understand, they're like nuggets of gold.
The rest you can extrapolate from context and tone.
I think it's a crying shame that the Spanish government would hit a sector where a person can spend money on something that makes them richer.