Social media is abuzz today with the news that a family favorite is coming back to Animal Kingdom. Since Festival of the Lion King has reopened since the pandemic, to some, “it’s not the true show”. Reopening on May 15th, it was renamed A Celebration of the Festival of the Lion King. Starting July 16th, the full show will be back ! Yes, you heard that right, that means the Tumble Monkeys are back.
The King has returned..
When the new show debuted May 8, 2021 there were some definite changes, some not so widely accepted by fans. That doesn’t mean there wasn’t celebrations and cheers the day those doors opened in time for the 50th Anniversary.
According to the Disney Website “Know Before you Go”..
- A Celebration of Festival of the Lion King will be presented in a modified format to be mindful of the current environment. Adjustments to the show have been made onstage and backstage, including updates to choreography and temporarily pausing some show elements to allow for appropriate physical distancing.
- Seating will be limited for the show and is not guaranteed with park admission. Guests should check My Disney Experience app, in-park tip boards or speak with a Cast Member at Harambe Theatre for queue information and show availability, which is subject to change.
History of the “Monarchy”
Festival of the Lion King first opened in Camp Minnie-Mickey, it was housed in an enclosed theatre. Broken into 4 sections, each with a designated animal name, including Warthog, Elephant, Giraffe, and Lion. The floats representing each animal were originally part of The Lion King Celebration parade from Disneyland. Throughout the show, guests are asked to make the sounds of their animals, led by 4 hosts. Dressed in traditional African dress and each with a Swahili name. They are Kiume (meaning masculine and strong), Nakawa (meaning good-looking), Kibibi (meaning princess) and Zawadi (meaning the gift), the will also occasionally pull children from the audience to dance in the show.
The show is not a reenactment of the movie, but a show of the songs from the movie (and other sources). These are performed along with special appearances by the Tumble Monkeys, a group of performers dressed in orange money costumes. They fly across the stage in amazing feats of acrobatics and comedy.
A New Home for the Show
Once the construction for Pandora: The World of Avatar was started, the show had to be moved out the original theatre. Starting on January 6th, 2014, Camp Minnie-Mickey was closed and the show reopened in Africa on June 1, 2014. The theatre was similar to the original, but with a completely overhauled exterior.
Are you a huge fan of the show? Or is this a great place to beat the heat and take a nap ? My kids have personally danced a couple of times in the show it’s a huge family favorite. Your