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Disney’s The Lion King tour reveals new cast members

The UK & Ireland tour of Disney’s iconic musical The Lion King will welcome new cast members.


Starting from 5 September 2023, the new additions to the principal cast include Aphiwe Nyezi as Simba, Brian Gilligan as Scar and Andre Jewson as Zazu. They will join a diverse international company representing 17 countries during the shows run in Birmingham and Dublin.

Aphiwe Nyezi is from Cape Town, South Africa and is currently part of The Lion King company in London’s West End. Brian Gilligan hails from Dublin, Ireland and has appeared in various stage productions, including Romeo & Juliet at Mill Theatre Dublin and Jimmys Hall at Abbey Theatre Dublin. Andre Jewson from Australia has previously played Zazu in The Lion King across the International and Australian Tours.

The newcomers will join existing principal cast members, including Thandazile Soni as Rafiki, Jean-Luc Guizonne as Mufasa, Janique Charles as Nala until 16 September and Nokwanda Khuzwayo as Nala from 28 September.

The cast also features Alan McHale as Timon and Carl Sanderson as Pumbaa, along with new ensemble members Aleasha Grace, Francessca Daniella-Baker, Phumelele Jili, Joshua Lloyd, Abon Saliljan, Keorapetse Sebokolodi and Karlene Wray.

Lion King tour dates, venues and tickets »

The Lion King is currently playing at Birmingham Hippodrome until 16 September 2023 and will then return to Dublins Bord Gáis Energy Theatre from 28 September – 11 November 2023.

The musical, based on the beloved animated film, brings Simba’s epic adventures to life through stunning masks, puppets and costumes as he navigates the responsibilities of adulthood and becoming king.

Julie Taymor’s internationally celebrated stage adaptation of The Lion King premiered on Broadway in 1997 and has since been produced in 25 global productions in nine different languages. The show has been a massive success, entertaining millions of theatregoers worldwide.

About the author: Josh Darvill

Josh is Stageberry's editor with over five years of experience writing about theatre in the West End and across the UK. Prior to following his passion for musicals, he worked for more than a decade as a TV journalist.