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Lion & Wicked Report Record Sales for 2010

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Despite the ongoing impacts of recession, long-running West End musicals The Lion King and Wicked have claimed record box office figures for 2010.

At the Lyceum, The Lion King producers report the Disney show has taken more than £34 million over the course of 2010 - an increase of £2 million on last year's figure and the highest of any production in West End history.

Attendances over the course of the year topped 820,000, almost 19,000 of whom saw it during the final week of the year. Over nine million people have now seen the show since it opened in the West End in 1999, while worldwide it has generated revenues of £2.7 billion.

Based on Disney's 1994 animated feature film, the stage adaptation opened first on Broadway at the New Amsterdam Theatre in November 1997. The original Broadway creative team, led by director and designer Julie Taymor, reunited for the London production.

The Lion King features a score comprising songs from the film and new numbers written by Elton John and Tim Rice, with additional material by South African-born Lebo M, Mark Mancina, Hans Zimmer and Julie Taymor. The book is by Roger Allers and Irene Mecchi.

Across town at the Apollo Victoria, Whatsonstage.com Award-winning musical Wicked has reported that during its final week of 2010 the musical grossed over £1 million thanks to attendances of over 20,000.

The figure, which producers claim is "the highest single-week gross in London theatre history", contributed to overall takings in excess of £30 million, up over £3 million on 2009. Over 800,000 people attended performances across the year.

Executive producer Michael McCabe said: “2010 proved to be an extraordinary year for Wicked. As well as enjoying our highest grossing year to date and achieving the amazing milestone of a £1million grossing week, we also won several prestigious awards, raised funds for The Woodland Trust and the St John Ambulance ‘Teach the Difference’ project and we were enormously proud to launch the Wicked Young Writers’ Award”.

Among its awards last year was a Whatsonstage.com Award for Best West End Show and an Olivier Award for Most Popular Show.


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