With eight performances still remaining in Denver, Disney's THE LION KING is already celebrating a sold-out, record-breaking engagement at The Buell Theatre. By the time the triumphant, five-week return engagement concludes on Sunday, December 4, it will have entertained nearly 110,000 people and grossed over $8.5 million at the box office. The award-winning musical grossed over $2 million during the week of November 21, making it the highest-grossing week of any theatrical production in the venue's history.
This is THE LION KING's third visit to Denver. The North American Tour launched in Denver in April 2002 where it played a sold-out 10-week engagement at The Buell Theatre. The production returned to The Buell Theatre in September 2006 where it played a seven-week sold-out engagement.
It is estimated that by the conclusion of the engagement THE LION KING will generate a $30 million economic benefit to Denver from travel, hotels, restaurants, parking and other businesses patronized by both theatergoers and production staff. This figure is based upon a report from the Touring Broadway League, the official trade organization for Broadway and their North American Tours. The report states that on average, Broadway tours contribute to the local metropolitan area's economy an economic impact 3.5 times the gross ticket sales.
"The return of THE LION KING to Denver and its overwhelming success is a tribute to the entire Disney Theatrical team and the incredibly talented people involved in the creation of the show," said President and COO of the Denver Center for the Performing Arts, Randy Weeks. "Additionally, it is a testament to the ongoing commitment of the Disney company maintaining their productions at the highest possible standards. Is it possible that THE LION KING is better now than it was when it first opened here? I believe so."
"As the North American tour of THE LION KING approaches its 10th anniversary, it is only fitting that we should return to the city where this groundbreaking tour was launched," said Jack Eldon, Vice President, Domestic, Disney Theatrical Productions. "We are overwhelmed by the enduring response to the show and thank the city of Denver for another incredible engagement."
This North American National Tour has been seen by over 13.5 million theatergoers and grossed over $875 million to date. Enjoying its ninth year on the road, THE LION KING continues to celebrate unparalleled achievements and delight new audiences throughout North America.