Making of The Lion King

Edward Tsumele

Edward Tsumele

Excitement around The Lion King, one of the biggest shows to hit post-apartheid South Africa, is building in the run-up to the production's opening on June 6 at the Teatro at Montecasino.

There has been a veil of secrecy surrounding the rehearsals at the State Theatre in Pretoria, as well as construction activities at Montecasino, Fourways.

Now the huge cast and large crew have moved everything from Pretoria to Montecasino's Teatro in preparation for the show's opening night.

However, SABC2, one of the sponsors of this Disney production, has been following every step of the show during rehearsals, recording every step from costumes to stage construction.

Now all these goings-on will be beamed into our houses, just before the show takes off at Montecasino.

A six-part documentary, Maropeng - The Spirit of The Lion King, will air on SABC2 from May 27 to July 1 at 9pm.

The documentary will explore the dynamic intricacies involved in mounting a stage production of the magnitude of The Lion King.

It's an exclusive backstage pass giving access to confidential comments by the selection panel.

It features moments of excitement, triumph and defeat as the cast members run through the paces of the gruelling auditions, rehearsals and performance phases.

Maropeng - The Spirit of The Lion King offers a potjiekos of hope, laughter, inspiration, disappointment and sadness, as well as elation.

It hints at an underlying sense of pride that is attributed to being instrumental in giving birth to the creation of such brilliance.

While elements of the production are being created and built in Pretoria, hundreds of builders and craftsmen are working around the clock to create a beautiful home for the show at Montecasino Teatro.