Good Literature Review On Lion King
When it was released in 1994, Lion King was well received and critically acclaimed. Three years later, the adaption of Lion King was shown on Broadway. The visual tapestry in the adaptation of Lion King gave the production the spectacle and grandeur that was associated with the original production in 1994. While the Broadway production was also critically acclaimed, it is important to analyze he production in light of the elements adduced by Aristotle as to what constitutes a good tragedy. In this regard, a critical review of the plot, thought, character, melody, diction and spectacle in the Broadway adaptation of Lion King is important.
Of the six elements in Aristotle’s criteria (Castagno, 2011), spectacle is the least connected to literature. The spectacle in a production is dependent on the art and design of the stage and the other visual elements of the production rather than the literary part of the production (Aristotle, 350 B.C.E). The spectacle in the Broadway adaptation of the Lion King was the costumes worn by the cast and the stage set designs. Rather than a separate stage set and costumes, the production blends the two visual elements to good effect. The costumes worn by the cast mimic the animals in the original production.
The plot is the most important element in a production. One of the most outstanding aspects of the plot in the production was its magnitude. From a quantitative perspective, the plot was both long and complex. From a qualitative perspective, the plot of the production was filled with universal significance and a sense of seriousness. Additionally, the plot had the incentive moment at the beginning of the plot where a cause-effect chain is established. The causes in the plot are downplayed in subsequent scenes while the effects are effectively emphasized (Dibell, 2011).
According to McManus (1999), characters in the perfect tragedy offer support to the plot in the production. This is because the personal motivations of the characters are important to the case-effect relationship which is important for the plot. The Broadway adaptation of Lion King achieves this by maintaining the original cast of the production from 1997 in its subsequent performances. This gives the Broadway production the consistency and support to the plot that is required in the criteria proposed by Aristotle (Malloy, 2014).
Diction as an element of the Aristotle’s criteria entails the expressions of words and its influence on their meaning. The use of stylistic elements, with particular interest to metaphors is of particular importance in a production. The entire Broadway production is a metaphor relating to spiritual awakening. Through the character of Simba, the production shows how he overcomes his ego (Louv, 2013).
Though is very important in any production. As highlighted earlier in the plot of the production, it is important for the plot in any production to have some universal significance. The element of thought in any production is associated with the enunciation of a general maxim or exploration of relevant themes through the production (Husain, 2001). The Broadway adaptation of Lion King shows though through the themes explored in the production. The most significant theme in the productions is the need to face one’s problems rather that fleeing. This theme is exemplified by Simba when his father Mufasa is killed by Scar, and his ultimate return to face his problems and take his place as the king of the kingdom (Allers & Mecchi, n.d.).
Melody as an element in a play is very important. According to the criteria proposed by Aristotle, it is important for the melody in any production to be entirely integrated into the production (Wichmann, 1991). Any musical compositions in the production should be as integrated into the play as the actors (McManus, 1999). This criterion is adequately met in the Broadway adaptation of Lion King. The choral odes in the production are not mere interludes, but serve to contribute to the harmony among the scenes and the unity of the entire plot of the production (Moore, 2011).
Allers, R. & Mecchi, I. (n.d.). The Lion King: Study Guide. Disney Theatrical Productions Education Department.
Aristotle (350 B.C.E). Poetics. Translated by Butcher. S. Retrieved 17 Jan. 2015 from http://classics.mit.edu/Aristotle/poetics.1.1.html#200
Castagno, P. (2011). New playwriting strategies: Language and media in the 21st century. New York. Routledge.
Dibell, A. (2011). Elements of Writing Fiction - Plot. Cincinnati: F+W Media.
Husain, M. (2001). Ontology and the art of tragedy: An approach to Aristotle's Poetics. New York: State University of New York.
Louv, J. (2013). Is ‘The Lion King’ a Metaphor for Spiritual Awakening?. Retrieved 17 Jan. 2015 from http://ultraculture.org/blog/2013/12/18/lion-king-metaphor-spiritual- awakening/
Malloy, K. (2014). The art of theatrical design. Elements if visual composition, methods and practice. Boca Raton. CRC Press.
McManus, B. (1999). Outline of Aristotle's Theory of Tragedy in the Poetics. Retrieved 17 Jan. 2015 from http://www2.cnr.edu/home/bmcmanus/poetics.html
Moore, J. (2011). Review: "The Lion King" still rules musical jungle. The Denver Post. Retrieved 17 Jan. 2015 from http://www.denverpost.com/ci_19284470
Wichmann, E. (1991). Listening to theatre: The aural dimension of Beijing Opera. Honolulu: University of Hawaii Press.
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