By Robin Clutters

(CBS4) – A family favorite is returning to the Denver Center for the Performing Arts. Disney’s “The Lion King” opens Dec. 2 at the Buell Theatre. It’s the first touring Broadway show to be back on stage since the start of the pandemic.

(credit: Denver Center for the Performing Arts)

Gerald Ramsey, who plays Mufasa, grew up in American Samoa and Saudi Arabia. Before joining the cast, he had never been to a Broadway show. He landed the role of Mufasa after going to an open casting call in Hawaii.

“Honestly I didn’t believe it,” says Ramsey. “I didn’t tell anyone I was leaving to join ‘The Lion King’ because I really thought they were going to send me back after a couple of days.”

Six years later, Ramsey is still a part of the cast.

“What keeps me going is representation. Knowing that I am one of the few Samoans who is in a musical. Most of us play football or we join the military. For me to get a chance to show there are other avenues out there, I hope I can inspire more parents and more people to pursue a career in the arts.”

(credit: CBS)

Ramsey says even if you’ve seen “The Lion King” before, it’s definitely worth seeing again.

“Even for me, seeing the show every day, I am still getting different messages from the show and it’s still inspiring me in different ways.”

The DCPA will have COVID safety protocols in place. Guests 12 and older are required to show proof of vaccination. Kids 12 and under will need proof of a negative test. Masks will be required unless actively eating or drinking.

For tickets and more information on the show, head to the Denver Center website.

Robin Clutters