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Jigsaw’s Amma Ris in The Lion King

Amma Ris

Disney’s award-winning musical The Lion King is now in its 15th year at the Lyceum Theatre in the West End. This acclaimed production has been seen by over 70 million people around the world and tells the timeless story of Simba and his epic journey to fulfil his destiny as King of the Pride lands. On Tuesday 4th November 2014 we made a Jigsaw trip to see the show and we were all blown away by this extraordinary production. This was very exciting for us all as one of our very talented Crouch End students, Amma Ris, is currently starring as Young Nala in the show.

It was fantastic to see so many Jigsaw students and parents there to see the show and support Amma as she gave a truly inspiring performance and impressed us all with her fine acting skills and lovely singing voice.

One of the absolute highlights of this show is the spectacular costumes and make up that the actors wear to convey the different jungle animals. The attention to detail is incredible, and you spend the first ten minutes of the show just absorbing how phenomenally colourful the stage is with all the performers on at once. The show opens with “The Circle of life” which introduces us to the beautiful soundtrack by Elton John as many of the songs are taken from the original film.

This is a fantastic show to introduce young children to the theatre as it really does stretch the audience’s imagination through the use of puppetry, brilliant choreography and clever lighting to create star effects and such like. Many children will of course be familiar with the storyline and songs. Visually, I think it’s one of the greatest shows I’ve seen. It also has a huge emotional impact as it addresses themes such as loyalty, abandonment and relationships which are very much a big part of all our lives on a daily basis. It’s difficult to leave the theatre without feeling inspired by the symbolism and moral of the story – how we should stay loyal to those that care for us as truth and honesty always prevail in the end.

My only criticism of this show is that for me personally I love to see a live orchestra at the theatre and because this show is so music orientated and led, it was a shame not to be able to see the musicians. I felt a live orchestra would have added to the intensity of the show and finished it off so beautifully on a visual level. Otherwise, I found this show thoroughly enjoyable and we all had a fantastic evening. The star of the show for us all was of course Amma Ris, as Young Nala, as she lit up the stage with such a huge amount of energy and was incredibly engaging for such a young performer.

Jigsaw Performing Arts is dedicated to developing performance skills, promoting self-expression and building confidence. We offer performing arts classes for children aged between 3 – 18.  Find your nearest school by entering your postcode into the search on our home page