Tuesday, December 21, 2004

der König der Löwen, really?

Well.. Surprisingly, I just found out some facts about The Lion King. Not the fact that it was brought up to stage, (duh!) but the fact that the staging of the Lion King is much more complicated, compelling, exciting, amazing than what I have thought. And it's personally related to me!

I didn't realize when Gretchen, Gitta and I were talking about mainstream Broadway works, she pointed The Lion King right away. I thought at that time, out of thousands (well, maybe not thousands) of musical or drama, she can choose anything from Miss Saigon to Sunset Boulevard. Which was better, in my opinion that time. Or I thought she said that because she knew that we came from Hamburg, and she learned that there is a translated-to-german version of the Lion King in Hamburg.

I just found out that she might said that because she is a puppeteer. And we were in this international puppet festival. And the Lion King, was a slight different musical than there ever was.

My initial take on the Lion King was that there would be nothing special outside the costume. Because I knew the storyline, right? I am very much aware of the music, right? I can even rehearse some of the lines (everything the light touches [pause] is our kingdom..), right? I even know to some extent some trivia on The Lion King. I thought, I nailed it!

Again, I was WRONG!

Julie TaymorJulie Taymor, admitted that she was faced with a big challenge when she was proposed to reinterpret The Lion King to the stage. And then Taymor admitted that what she learned previously, were applied in her final composition of the Lion King. She told us that she used traditional cultural means of performances. Namely, the african masks, bunraku puppets, and get this, wayang kulit. Well, not so sure whether solely wayang kulit, because in here it was referred as shadow puppetry. But I think it was, because Taymor spent four years in Indonesia to study on wayang, it even had significant influences in her work. Kudos to you, Jules..

Now, as one of a member of wayang kulit group in Hamburg, I think seeing the Lion King will give me a new point of view of how it is being interpreted, and most important, how the Lion King itself will be conducted. I once said that I would not watch it if it was not in english. But seeing that they will offer more than just music and story and choreography, I think it is still worth it.

That's why Gretchen picked The Lion King when we discussed about mainstream Broadway. That's why The Lion King sounds much more interesting to me right now. That's why I'm going to watch the Lion King sometime in January.

Habt Ihr Lust mitzukommen?

1 comment:

Mike said...

Ja, natürlich, aber möchtest du mir die Flugkarte kaufen?