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60 kids perform Lion King Jr. for Lake Plains Players

By Tom Rivers, Editor Posted 8 August 2019 at 9:12 am

Photos by Tom Rivers

MIDDLEPORT – Qasim Huzair of Lyndonville plays Simba and roars when he returns to Pride Rock and takes his rightful place as king in the Lake Plains Players’ production of The Lion King Jr.

The Players have run a  the summer theater camp with about 60 kids from second-graders to graduating seniors. They have met three times a week until going each day this week during showing week.

The performances are at the Roy-Hart High School Auditorium at 7 p.m. on Friday, and 2 p.m. and 7 p.m. on Saturday.

The cast includes students from Medina, Lyndonville, Albion, Newfane, Roy-Hart, Barker and Lockport school districts. Lance Anderson, director of the show, said the Players run the summer theater camp to engage students during the summer and build friendships among the theater community.

“The fact they can put together this show getting together three nights a week for three hours a night is pretty amazing,” he said during rehearsal on Wednesday.

The performance is dedicated to the late Brennan Moody of Albion, who died in a car accident on June 18. Brennan performed in last summer’s show, Elf Jr.

For information about tickets to The Lion King Jr., click here.

Edward Murphy plays Mufasa, the Lion King and is frustrated by some of Simba’s recklessness as a lion cub. Mufasa tells Simba about the great kings of the past and how they watch over everything from the stars. Murphy is singing, “They Live in You.”

Brian Jackson portrays the young Simba who stands amidst a wildebeest stampede caused by hyenas.

Scar desperately wants to be king and lures Mufasa into the elephant graveyard. Mufasa saved Simba from the wildebeests but is clinging to the edge of a cliff. Scar throws him off the cliff back into the stampede.

Simba is grief-stricken after finding his father trampled to death.

Brian Cunningham of Lyndonville plays Pumbaa, a warthog, and Sophia Cardone of Medina is Timon, a meerkat. They save Simba after he escapes from the hyenas and runs out into the desert, where he collapses from exhaustion. Pumbaa and Timon show Simba their carefree way of life – “Hakuna Matata.” Simba grows to adulthood in the jungle.

There are many jungle creatures wearing colorful costumes including Annalise Steier, center, of Albion.

Madison Pratt of Roy-Hart is Nala performing “Shadowland” with the lionesses. They are about to embark on a journey to find food due to a famine under Scar’s rule.

Tamara Huzair of Lyndonville portrays Rafiki and holds a baby lion during the finale of “Circle of Life.” Rafiki is a wise mandrill who acts as healer of the Pridelands. Qasim Huzair of Lyndonville plays Simba and Madison Pratt is Nala.

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