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Kayi Ushe to play Simba in The Lion King when the show returns in July

A new Simba will head to Pride Rock

Kayi Ushe
© James Everett

Kayi Ushe will take on the lead role of Simba in The Lion King when the show returns in July.

Ushe, who has previously appeared in shows such as The Book of Mormon, Motown The Musical and Crazy For You, while also touring as Lola in Kinky Boots, will play the part for the first time at the Lyceum Theatre.

He will be joined by a variety of new faces and returning cast members – which you can find out more about here.

Ushe told WhatsOnStage: "I feel grateful and beyond excited. To be playing Simba in The Lion King on the Lyceum Theatre stage is a dream come true. Especially after the year we have all had. We've all been robbed of precious moments with family, friends and loved ones. So to be going into a show that is a celebration of culture and community is such a blessing. To get to tell this story means so much to me and I can't wait to get started." Watch a discussion with Ushe here.

Julie Taymor's adaptation of the iconic Disney classic film first opened on Broadway in 1997, coming to the West End two years later. The record-breaking piece has been closed since the onset of the pandemic, but but is set to reopen in late July, when the government's roadmap has reached step four. Tickets for The Lion King are on sale now.

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