The King Arrives in Pittsburgh

By: Amanda Narcisi

Everyone knows the incredible story of The Lion King, and now the national tour rides into Pittsburgh on the back of giraffes and elephants.

The Lion King


The story we all love comes to the stage telling the tale of Simba, the lion cub who’s the father is the king of the pride land. In a family feud, The King dies at the paws of his brother, Scar. Scar framed young Simba for the death and Simba left the land and hid in the jungle for years. 

During that time, Simba met Timon and Pumba, a feisty duo Meerkat and Warthog, that taught him to enjoy the more beautiful things: bugs and fun. While he was banished, Scar took over the pride land and cast it into the darkness with three accomplices: Shenzi, Banzi, and Ed, the hyenas.

All the time, there are a few friends to Simba stay faithful to him and the king: Nala, his childhood friend who finds him again in the jungle. Rafiki is the great monkey who begins the story as introducing Simba and acts as a spiritual guide to the young cub. Lastly, Zazu is right-hand to the king and responsible for day to day in the pride lands.

The National Tour on Stage


After 21 years on Broadway, The Lion King returns to Pittsburgh with a national cast, fabulous costumes, and music. 

Cast begins with: Spencer Plachy as “Scar,” Gerald Ramsey as “Mufasa,” Buyi Zama as “Rafiki,” Nick Cordileone as “Timon,” Greg Jackson as “Zazu,” Ben Lipitz as “Pumbaa,” Jared Dixon as “Simba,” Nia Holloway as “Nala,” Keith Bennett as “Banzai,” Martina Sykes as “Shenzi,” and Robbie Swift as “Ed.” 

Also: The role of “Young Simba” is alternated between Richard Phillips, Jr. and Walter Russell III. The role of “Young Nala” is alternated between Brilyn Johnston and Celina Smith.

Then rounding out the cast are Derek Adams, Kayla Rose Aimable, Andrew Arrington, William John Austin, Eric Bean, Jr, Kalilah Black, Sasha Caicedo, Chante Carmel, Sean Aaron Carmon, Kyle Robert Carter, Thembelihle Cele, Adrianne Chu, Daniela Cobb, Erynn Marie Dickerson, Ntomb’khona Dlamini, Tony Freeman, Mukelisiwe Goba, Deidrea Halley, William James Jr., Kolin Jerron, Jane King, Brandon A. McCall, Christopher L. Mc Kenzie, Jr., Phylicia Pearl Mpasi, Nhlanhla Ndlovu, Aaron Nelson, Sicelo Ntshangase, Christopher Sams, Jordan Samuels, Kaylin Seckel, Kevin Tate, Courtney Thomas, Shacura Wade, and Zola Williams.

The director, costume designer, and mask co-designer Julie Taymor, continues to lead the production.

See The Lion King in Pittsburgh


The Lion King comes to Pittsburgh on September 4th for a four-week engagement. Showtimes vary, and a unique sensory show is set for September 14th and can be purchased at or by calling 412-456-2670. Showtimes vary, and tickets can be bought at, in-person at the Box Office at Theater Square, and by phone at 412-456-6666. VIP Ticket Packages, which include a prime seat location, a commemorative souvenir program, and an exclusive merchandise item, are also available. Groups of 10 or more may reserve seating by calling 412-471-6930. Hakuna Matata!