St Andrews sparks with ‘The Lion King’ play


Students from St Andrews High School in Blantyre on Saturday night showed their verve in acting shining with the play titled The Lion King.

The musical p lay was staged over three days starting on Thursday, Friday and Saturday which was the climax attracting impressive audiences.

This was a stage play but the students showed their exceptional talent led by drama teacher Kevin Troughton to offer a spectacular and colourful production that left the audience which was dominated by parents of the children impressed.


From the word go, the audience saw the best from the students and St Andrews team put in extra effort in the production which saw different departments working together led by drama and music departments.

It also showed that the students had massive rehearsals which saw them doing well in drama and music and the production team worked hard to come up with the best costume.

The past has seen the school holding different performances and last year they also produced a Smoldering Charcoal movie.


But they showed the best in The Lion King compared to their past exploits taking into consideration that the piece featured a huge cast with students ranging from the ages of 12 to 18.

Although the play was done in its original form, the production team tried as much to breath in new life and this included a fusing in of a Chichewa song on top of other original songs.

This was a play that saw the audience stay attentive throughout, they clapped hands and laughed when it mattered and at the end of it all they gave a standing ovation to the cast.

It was a play worth watching as its story was familiar and many have watched its movie.

The Lion King tells the story of Simba, a young lion played by Daniel Edwards who is to succeed his father, Mufasa (Muzipasi Munthali), as king; however, after Simba’s uncle Scar (Peter Bates) murders Mufasa, Simba is manipulated into thinking he was responsible and flees into exile in shame and despair.

Upon maturation living with two wastrels, Simba now played by Zaithwa Gwaza is given some valuable perspective from his childhood friend, Nala played by Talandira Nchingula and Esther Ngwira, and his shaman, Rafiki (Theola Aroni), before returning to challenge Scar to end his tyranny.

The story takes place in the Pride Lands of Africa, where a lion rules over the animals as king.

The Lion King is a 1994 American animated epic musical film produced by Walt Disney Feature Animation and released by Walt Disney Pictures.

It is the 32nd animated feature in the Walt Disney Animated Clas s ics ser ies .

The story was influenced by William Shakespeare’s Hamlet and the film was produced during a period known as the Disney Renaissance.

Award winning actress Tapiwa Gwaza who starred in Shemu Joyah’s Seasons of a Life said she was impressed with the students’ performance.

“A very exciting play and I have enjoyed it. It was as if I was watching the movie itself. I am impressed and I say well done to St Andrews,” said Tapiwa.

She said she also found the production very interesting in that her son Zaithwa was part of the cast and played the part of adult Simba.

Drama teacher Kevin Troughton described said they decided to stage the play because it is a story that people know it better.

“The story is good and the cast was great to night,” he said.

With some people saying the school should take the play outside, Troughton said it would be difficult because there is too much involved including lighting and sound.

“We do these shows every year and we hope to bring more events this year. I am impressed because it’s a piece which is in an African setting, there was a lot of dancing and singing,” he said.

Head teacher of the school Kieron Smith also described the performances on the three days as outstanding and that people came in large numbers

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