Seeing The Lion King recently made me remember just how great a show it is. The staging is sublime, the costumes iconic, and the music steeped in nostalgia … But, from Rafiki's wisdom to Timon and Pumbaa's easygoing ways, it also teaches us a lot about life. So here are my eight favourite snippets of Lion King wisdom.
- “The past can hurt … you can either run from it or learn from it.” Rafiki (played in London by the incredible Brown Lindiwe Mkhize) is full of wise words, and these are my absolute favourite.
- Face your fears. When Simba faces his fears (and his past), he becomes king. Now, I'm not saying that facing your fears is necessarily going to make you into a monarch, but it might stop you from being held back.
- Every now and again, burst into song. Sometimes, to make your point (or to “ditch a dodo”), you may just need to start singing.
- Don't trust somebody called Scar. Even if the green smoke and vicious personality make them seem really genuine, anybody called Scar is likely to cause trouble down the line.
- Learn to forgive yourself. In The Lion King, Simba has to learn to forgive himself. It's not easy, but it does mean that he can go back to Pride Rock and do the right thing. If you have a Pride Rock in your life at the moment – something that you need to go back to, but that you can't quite face – maybe forgiving yourself is the key.
- Stand upwind of warthogs. Seriously.
- You need friends who you can rely on. Ideally, one of them should be a lion. Follow the example of Timon, Pumbaa and Simba, and surround yourself with friends who you can rely on – people who have your back, and people who make you feel better when you're down. If one of them is a lion – well, that's a big bonus.
- Hakuna Matata. If all else fails, hakuna your tatas and take some time to have fun.
The Lion King is currently mesmerising audiences eight times a week at the Lyceum Theatre in London; you can even catch it on a Sunday afternoon. So, for more Lion King wisdom, and a visually breathtaking performance, book tickets now.
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