HomeThe Theatre SphereThe Lion King Deemed Highest Grossing Show in QPAC's History

The Lion King Deemed Highest Grossing Show in QPAC’s History


Buyi Zama as Rafiki performing Cicle of Life | Photograph by Deen van Meer ©Disney
Buyi Zama as Rafiki performing Circle of Life | Photograph by Deen van Meer ©Disney

More than fifteen years into its highly successful tour across the planet, The Lion King musical adaptation finally arrived at the Queensland Performing Arts Centre (QPAC) for a four month run. During this period there were hundreds of sessions held at the QPAC Lyric Theatre, many of which were completely packed and booked out well in advance. But all good things must come to an end, and after the four months breezed by, the curtain lowered one final time for The Lion King on January 25th 2015.

Having had the opportunity to watch one of the first sessions in its run, my enthusiasm about this musical cannot be understated. With brilliant music, a fantastic cast and some of the most memorable costuming I have seen to date – The Lion King was very deserving of its ★★★★★’s in my review of it last year. It currently stands as my highest reviewed anything on The Otaku’s Study in the past three months. You can read my full review of The Lion King HERE.

The popularity of The Lion King at QPAC cannot be understated, with it being deemed not only the highest grossing show in the Centre’s 30 year history (Since opening in 1985), but the production also drew in the second highest total audience of any show over the same 30 year period. Ultimately, over 271,000 attended The Lion King at QPAC’s Lyric Theatre during the four month season which began on September 26th 2014.

The Chief Executive of QPAC, John Kotzas, has said that these figures represent the appetite of Queenslanders’ for landmark musical productions:

The anticipation for The Lion King was so high the Brisbane season was almost sold out prior to opening. The Lion King now holds the new record for the highest box office earnings for any show since QPAC’s opening in 1985.

A large number of visitors, more than a third, came from outside Brisbane – from regional Queensland, interstate and overseas. Musical theatre continues to be a major driver of cultural tourism.

Congratulations to Disney on the resounding success of The Lion King in Brisbane. Queenslanders have once again shown their desire to see blockbuster musicals and we look forward to working with Disney again.

James Thane, Executive Producer for The Lion King has claimed that the company was delighted in the way that Queenslanders embraced the Brisbane premiere season of the show.

From the unprecedented demand when we first went on sale, to the full houses and audience appreciation throughout the season, the response has been phenomenal.

On behalf of Disney and the entire company of The Lion King I would like to sincerely thank Queensland audiences and all of the QPAC team for their enthusiasm and warmth for Julie Taymor’s visionary stage event.

Following a brief delay, The Lion King will hold a limited season at the Regent Theatre in Melbourne from next month, with future sessions up in the air at this point in time. Given that many tickets were sold-out prior to the production’s inaugural season at QPAC, I wonder if or when another season will be announced.

In terms of future “Lyric Theatre” musicals at QPAC, Wicked: The Untold Story of the Witches of Oz is set to begin on February 12th 2015 for a two month season. This will be followed by a one month run of Dirty Dancing: The Classic Story on Stage from May 27th 2015 and a fortnight run of Anything Goes from July 28th 2015. The Otaku’s Study looks forward to bringing you news and reviews on these productions and more in the coming months.

Founder of The Otaku's Study. I have been exploring this labyrinth of fandom these last fifteen years, and still nowhere close to the exit yet. Probably searching for a long time to come.


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