Disney's The Lion King KIDS
Introduce theatre to your classroom today! Explore, Create and Share the arts with this easy-to-use, multi-media program.
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Show Essentials
+ Ensemble

Full Synopsis


A complete curriculum, including detailed lesson plans and corresponding student materials, allows you and your students to explore the varied aspects of theatre: Acting, Design, Directing, Writing, Music and Dance.

Each session launches with a video introducing the day's theme through backstage access and on-screen instruction. After a teacher-facilitated, full class activity, students work in groups to solve a creative challenge, then share their work, reflect as a group and learn from one another.

As a holistic arts education program, The Lion King Experience fulfills many educational standards, including some Common Core State Standards and National Core Arts Standards.


Apply what you've learned! Use the foundations of theatre-making explored in the curriculum to rehearse, produce and build your own version of The Lion King — adapted and developed expressly for school students. A comprehensive ShowKit® provides all the materials you need to get started.


See your hard work come to life on stage when your students put on the show! From acting and design to creativity and collaboration, building a production allows your students to develop and experiment with a variety of skills that will stay with them long after the applause.

Includes a license to produce The Lion King KIDS, a 30-minute adaptation created especially for elementary school students, and an eleven-session curriculum that explores fundamentals of theatre-making, including: ACTING, DESIGN, MUSIC, PLAYWRITING, CHOREOGRAPHY, DIRECTING and MORE!


VILLAGERS enter ("One by One") to share their favorite story. RAFIKIS, the narrators, gather ANIMALS from across the Pridelands to welcome the newborn cub of King MUFASA and Queen SARABI ("Circle of Life"). Mufasa's jealous brother, SCAR, refuses to attend the ceremony, which angers the king. As time passes, SIMBA grows into a curious young lion. Mufasa explains the circle of life to his son and how one day he will become king of the Pridelands. Out for revenge, Scar encourages his nephew to visit the forbidden Elephant Graveyard. Simba takes his best friend, NALA, there after ditching ZAZU, Mufasa's loyal advisor ("I Just Can't Wait to Be King"). At the graveyard, three hungry hyenas — SHENZI, BANZAI and ED — corner the cubs, but Mufasa arrives and takes them home. Scar emerges to recruit the HYENAS to join his murderous plan to become king himself ("Be Prepared").

Back in the safety of the Pridelands, Mufasa reprimands Simba, then tells him to look up at the stars — the great kings of the past will always be there to guide him. The next day, Simba gets trapped in a wildebeest stampede started by Scar. Mufasa rescues Simba, but is pushed by Scar into the stampede, where he is trampled to death. Scar blames Simba and tells him to run away and never return. Scar then assumes the throne, uniting lions and hyenas under his dark reign. Lost in the desert, Simba meets TIMON and PUMBAA, who take him to their "worry-free" home in the jungle ("Hakuna Matata").

Under Scar's rule, the Pridelands are nearly destroyed. Nala, now grown, leaves to get help and finds Simba alive in the jungle ("Can You Feel the Love Tonight"). She urges him to come back home to take his rightful place as king but, still ashamed, Simba refuses. Rafki appears and helps him remember his father ("He Lives in You"). With newfound courage, Simba returns to the Pridelands. Timon and Pumbaa distract the hyenas ("Luau Hawaiian Treat") while Nala rallies the lionesses. Simba confronts his uncle, the truth of Mufasa's murder is revealed and Scar runs away, pursued by angry hyenas. With peace restored in the Pridelands, Simba takes his place as king and the circle of life continues ("Finale").



Cast Size: Large (21 or more performers)
Cast Type: Children
Dance Requirements: Standard

Character Breakdown

Your entire cast will portray villagers, with central characters emerging from this essential group. Whether an actor transforms into a lioness, Simba, or Mufasa, this can be done by donning a costume piece, prop, or mask to transistion from villager to character. Some villagers will play many roles in the story, from animals of the Pridelands (such as giraffes, elephants, lionesses, etc.) to hyenas to wildebeest (should you choose to stage the stampede with actors). Whenever not speaking as their assigned characters, cast members will return to their villager characters, sitting and watching the action unfold on the perimeter of the stage. Use this concept to suit the needs of your ensemble; multiple actors can play the same role throughout the show simply by passing on a key costume or prop piece.

A wise madrill who acts as healer of the Pridelands and guides Simba on his journey home. The Rafiki narrators - five aspects of one character - are the five leading villagers who become the story's narrators. They are key to the storytelling, and should be played by confident performers who are able to enunciate and project, so look for strong singers, as together they sing sections of "He Lives in You" and "Cricle of Life with Nants' Ingonyama." There is an air of mystery to Rafiki, who seemingly knows all, so be sure to cast actors who can command the stage as a cohesive unit. Though written to feature five narrators, the script can be adapted to incorporate more students (or fewer) depending upon your cast size.

Gender: any
Vocal range top: Bb4
Vocal range bottom: C4
The strong, honorable, and wise lion who leads the Pridelands. Mufasa should command respect onstage and also show tenderness with his son, Simba. Cast a mature actor who can convincingly portray the king.
Gender: male
A featured lioness, Mufasa's mate, and Simba's mother. She has a few speaking lines and provides an opportunity for an actor who can be maternal to Simba and leader of the lionesses.
Gender: female
The anxious yet loyal assistant to Mufasa who is always busy trying to do his duty. Zazu's lyrics are spoken rather than sung, and the role can be played by a boy or girl.
Gender: any
The antagonist of the show, overcome with jealousy of his brother, Mufasa, and nephew, Simba. Coldhearted and wickedly intelligent, he will stop at nothing to become king of the Pridelands. Cast a mature performer who can bring out this villain's dark side while handling Scar's sarcastic sense of humor. As his solos can be spoken, opt for an actor over a singer.
Gender: male
Vocal range top: B4
Vocal range bottom: B3
Young Simba
The protagonist of the story, is an adventurous and endearing cub who can't wait to be king of the Pridelands. Simba is playful, energetic, and naive, but after his father Mufasa's death, Simba struggles with shame and his destiny. Cast a strong singer and dynamic performer in this role.
Gender: male
Vocal range top: C#5
Vocal range bottom: C4
Grows from a cub to lion in "Hakuna Matata." Older Simba has more complex moments as he reunites with Nala, mourns his father, and returns to confront Scar, so cast a more mature actor. Be sure that the change in actors is clear: Try having Young Simba hand-off a costume piece, such as a medallion, to older Simba. Also be sure that Simba and Young Simba share a movement vocabulary.
Gender: male
Vocal range top: C#5
Vocal range bottom: Bb3
Young Nala
A courageous lion and Young Simba's best friend. She is not afraid to speak her mind. While Young Nala does sing a little, look for a strong female performer who can portray this confident cub.
Gender: female
Vocal range top: A4
Vocal range bottom: C4
Grows from a cub to a lioness before she confronts Scar, so cast a more mature actress. As with Young Simba and older Simba, ensure that this switch in actors performing a single role is clear. Direct the actors to share a mask or costume piece that distinctly represents Nala.
Gender: female
Vocal range top: Bb4
Vocal range bottom: Bb3
A slick yet childish hyena who works for Scar. He would be the leader of the group if hyenas weren't so lazy. Look for an outgoing and confident actor who can portray nastiness and gruffness. As banzai is always featured with Shenzi and Ed, consider auditioning the hyenas in trios.
Gender: male
One of Scar's hyenas who plot to take over the Pridelands. She is the sassy one of the trio and is always looking out for herself. With Banzai and Ed, she should be able to laugh loudly and long, as well as be menacing to Young Simba and Young Nala.
Gender: female
The third member of Scar's trio of lackeys. He has a loud, cackling laugh that is his only form of communication. Ed should be played by an actor who can laugh unabashedly and communicate through physicality and facial expressions rather than words. This role can be played by a boy or girl.
Gender: any
Scar's army, helping carry out his evil plot to take over the Pridelands. Hyenas are mangy, mindless creatures who sing in "Be Prepared." Cast actors who are able to sing the background parts of that song while playing the loud and raucous characters. Your hyenas can double as animals of the Pridelands or lionesses.
Gender: any
An outcast meerkat who lives in the jungle with Pumbaa. He is afraid of his own shadow, but pretends to be the confident, relaxed leader of the duo. Timon is one of the funniest characters in the show and should be played by a charismatic actor who understands comic timing. This part can be played by a boy or a girl.
Gender: any
Vocal range top: D5
Vocal range bottom: Bb3
A kindhearted, sensitive warthog who enjoys his simple life of grubs and relaxation. Cast a boy or girl who can portray this loveable and loyal friend to Timon and Simba with deadpan humor.
Gender: any
Vocal range top: E5
Vocal range bottom: B3
Full Song List
Disney's The Lion King KIDS: One by One
Disney's The Lion King KIDS: Circle of Life with Nants' Ingonyama
Disney's The Lion King KIDS: I Just Can't Wait to Be King
Disney's The Lion King KIDS: Be Prepared
Disney's The Lion King KIDS: Hakuna Matata (Part 1)
Disney's The Lion King KIDS: Hakuna Matata (Part 2)
Disney's The Lion King KIDS: Can You Feel the Love Tonight
Disney's The Lion King KIDS: He Lives in You
Disney's The Lion King KIDS: Luau Hawaiian Treat
Disney's The Lion King KIDS: Finale
Disney's The Lion King KIDS: Bows


Curriculum Connection



Discover fundamentals of musical theatre, learn about jobs in the theatre, explore the characters and plot of The Lion King KIDS and perform scenes.

Session 2: PRIDE

Explore the structure of The Lion King Experience, create an Ensemble Contract and develop a strong community.

Session 3: PLOT

Discover the plot of The Lion King, learn about conflict and resolution and create tableaus from the story.

Session 4: CHARACTER

Discover the actor's tools of body, voice and imagination, experiment with character development and make strong character choices.

Session 5: SPACE

Learn the parts of the stage, explore the process of blocking and create blocking for a moment in The Lion King KIDS.

Session 6: LANGUAGE

Explore the playwright's process, understand character voice and write original scenes.

Session 7: MUSIC

Meet the music director for The Lion King, understand the function of music in musical theatre and brainstorm an original song.

Session 8: MOVEMENT

Meet the choreographer of The Lion King, understand the function of dance in musical theatre and create original choreography.

Session 9: VISION

Meet the director of The Lion King, explore the concept of a director's vision and create a directorial vision for a scene in The Lion King KIDS.

Session 10: SPECTACLE

Explore the designer's process, learn how a director and designer work together and create an original mask design.

Session 11: REFLECTION

Reflect on the various sessions and accomplishments of The Lion King Experience and put everything together for a final performance.


Based on the Broadway production directed by Julie Taymor.


You must give the authors/creators billing credits, as specified in the Production Contract, in a conspicuous manner on the first page of credits in all programs and on houseboards, displays and in all other advertising announcements of any kind.
Percentages listed indicate required type size in relation to title size.

Author Billing – Disney’s The Lion King KIDS

In accordance with the Dramatic Performing Rights License, all advertising, such as posters and program covers, must include the show logo as provided in the ShowKit® Director’s Guide and all of the following author billing.
It is a violation of your contract if you crop or edit this logo in any way. You may keep this page for your records.
[name of school]
Production of
Music and Lyrics by
Additional Music and Lyrics by
Book by
Based on the Broadway production directed by 
Julie Taymor
The name of your organization must be billed in the form specified above, including the words “Production of” below your billing, which shall be visually contiguous with the title, all so that the audience is informed that you are the producer. Your billing shall be no less than 50% of the size of the logo or artwork title, as measured by the proportion of the average size of their names to the largest letter in the logo or artwork title. The size of the credits to the authors (listed above) shall be no less than 20% of the artwork or logo title as measured by the proportion of the average size of your name to the largest letter in the logo or artwork title.
The following credits should be included with MTI billing:
Music Adapted & Arranged and Additional Music & Lyrics and
“Luau Hawaiian Treat” written by Will Van Dyke
“It’s a Small World” written by Richard M. Sherman and Robert B. Sherman

Video Warning

If you purchase a separate license to allow non-commercial video recording of this production, you must print the following in your program. ANY VIDEO RECORDING MADE OF THIS PERFORMANCE IS AUTHORIZED FOR PERSONAL, AT-HOME, NON-COMMERCIAL USE ONLY. THE SALE OR DISTRIBUTION OF SUCH RECORDING IS STRICTLY PROHIBITED UNDER FEDERAL COPYRIGHT LAW. If you do not purchase the separate license for video recording, you must print the following in your program. The videotaping or other video or audio recording of this production is strictly prohibited

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