Success of The Lion King: the Musical Essay

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Through dance and movement, the storyline were expanded with the assistance of choreographer, Garth Fagan. A well-renowned choreographer for his innovative choreography primarily for Garth Fagan dance, Fagan used his unique style of choreography to the Lion King by combining a variety of Ballet, Jazz, Modern Dance, African Dance and Balinese Dance to suggest representations of nature without making a replica itself and use dance to help tell the story (Exploring the Lion King, 2010). Taymor’s idea of expanding the film by adding in choreographic elements not only will set the overall concept, it would additionally guide the visual aesthetic by allowing dance as the main element that balances musical numbers in all categories: effects, …show more content…
From Ballet to Hip Hop to cultural dances such as Balinese and Indonesian, the incorporation of these dance into the musical enabled critics to see actors not just dance as humans but also as animals (Schumacher 2010). In contrast to the film, the animated classic gave the storyline it’s basic outline of seeing the characters have their own pathways in the Circle of Life potentially. This is due to animation’s ability to demonstrate advanced technology in a cinematic level which the Lion King when first released. However, in musical, choreographer Fagan ‘wanted the choreography to look unlike Broadway dancing. I want the dance to look like an integral part of this Lion King land’ (Bramley 22:1997). By taking this particular approach in dance, it formed its own fluidity and strength that dancers themselves made evident throughout all dances. Furthermore, the choreography that both Fagan and Taymor visually created provides movement metaphor and vocabulary that Fagan uses to assist both Act 1 and 2 to tell the story mentally and physically (Disney Musical Theatre, no date). Barnes (2010), expressed ‘the different strains of understandings from all over the world by using all different forms of dance to help tell the story to make an idea as one whole’.

Placing dance and movement into the musical however has its challenges (Bramley

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