The Playbill Vault Celebrates Tony Award Winner Julie Taymor

By Megan Dekic
15 Dec 2013

Taymor is perhaps most widely known for directing the award-winning and wildly successful musical The Lion King. Once again, she used innovative puppetry and lavish sets and costumes to bring the 1994 Disney animated film of the same name to life on stage.

The production opened Nov. 13, 1997, at the New Amsterdam Theatre. The opening-night cast featured Samuel E. Wright as Mufasa, John Vickery as Scar, Jason Raize as Simba and Heather Headley as Nala. The show was crowned Best Musical at the 1998 Tony Awards, and Taymor won Tonys for Costume Design and Direction of a Musical. She holds the distinction of being the first woman to win a Tony for directing a musical.

The Lion King, which transferred to the Minskoff Theatre in 2006, recently became the fourth longest-running show in Broadway history, surpassing Les Misérables. It is currently the highest-grossing Broadway show of all time.

Read the Playbill for The Lion King here.