Full Synopsis

Full Synopsis

Act One

Lights up on Lion's Rock at daybreak. Marmoset enters and introduces himself to the audience. He explains that he is on an important mission to find a place for King Lion to live. It must be a place where King Lion can look out on the other animals and make sure that they are safe. He notices the rock and gets excited. He envisions a place – a safari park – where animals from all over can live together in harmony, safe from humans ("This Is the Place"). As Marmoset cleans the rock, King Lion enters with his son in tow. The King surveys his realm, wondering what is beyond the safari park in the big forest. Marmoset explains that only little animals live there. King Lion declares that there is much work to do, and the three of them exit.

The scene shifts to the forest, also at daybreak. Birds sing as trucks rumble through the woods in the distance. Fox awakens in his den; his normally dapper appearance is a bit worse for wear because he hasn't gotten much sleep – the trucks have kept him up all night. A newspaper falls from the sky and knocks him on top of the head. The article in the paper about the new safari park makes Fox very excited and with the help of the children in the audience, he begins to name all of the animals in the pictures. Fox then goes to take his morning bath and discovers that the stream has dried up. In a panic, he wakes up Wildcat. Unlike Fox, Wildcat is dressed in tattered clothes – his appearance reflects his mischievous and carefree lifestyle, which he details for the children ("I'm a Cat").

Miss Beaver, from the Animal Welfare Office, arrives to account for Fox and Wildcat. She is trying to organize the new animal community in an attempt to spread goodwill and peace ("Line 'Em up and Count 'Em"). Fox and Wildcat soon realize that Miss Beaver's recent arrival and the disappearance of the stream go together – they ask her to remove the dam that she built upstream of them. Miss Beaver explains that she has to have her dam there; there isn't enough space to have it elsewhere. In that moment, the Lion Club appears; he has lost his way while exploring his new home. To the others' surprise, Wildcat volunteers to go on an adventure and take Lion Cub home ("Wildcat on Safari").

Back at Lion's Rock, night is falling. King Lion keeps watch anxiously, waiting for his search parties to return with his son. Marmoset tries to put the King at ease by assuring him that nothing could possibly happen to the young cub. The King asks Marmoset to gather all of the other monkeys and search the trees in the park. Marmoset takes pride in his assignment and expounds on his time as the personal bodyguard to Don Enrique' Luis De Calvados ("Diamantina"). Before he sets off, Marmoset wonders if there are any unknown things in their new home that might like to eat monkeys.

Later that night, in a dark, spooky place in the forest, Marmoset gets his answer. Shadra, a large black panther, plays chess with himself on a tree branch. We hear a branch crack and a panicked scream, and Marmoset falls right onto Shadra's chessboard. Marmoset explains that he is on a mission to find the son of King Lion. This news sparks the interest of the panther, who plans a devious scheme. In his effort to get information from Marmoset, Shadra threatens to make dinner of him. With the help of the audience, Marmoset gets free. The evil panther then turns his dinner attention to the audience ("The Blackest of the Animals").

Meanwhile, Wildcat and Lion Cub bond as they make their way through the dark woods. They hear the loud howls of the wolf, which Wildcat does not recognize. With help from the cub and the audience, Wildcat finally figures out what the sound is and notices a set of glowing eyes. When Wildcat summons the wolves to show themselves, Shadra comes out, instead. Shadra tries to convince Wildcat that it will be safer to let Shadra take Lion Cub home. Wildcat refuses the offer, and Shadra tries to hypnotize him with a powerful diamond set in his turban. As Shadra is about to pick up the cub, Fox appears and frightens Shadra away. Wildcat explains the situation to Fox, thanks him for his help and thanks him for being his friend ("Two of a Kind"). Just before bed, Fox and Wildcat have a small fight. Wildcat has accidentally eaten Fox's peppermint lozenge. Fox storms off, upset. Later, Marmoset appears and mistakes Wildcat for Lion Club; he stuffs Wildcat in his bag and leaves. With the audience's help, Fox figures out what has happened and prepares to set out with the cub to find him. Shadra reappears at that instant and demands that the cub be turned over to him. He hypnotizes Fox and instructs him to tell the Lion King that Shadra has his son.

Act Two

The next morning, Marmoset returns to Lion's Rock, proudly holding the sack that contains Wildcat ("Diamantina – Reprise"). He tells the King that he has brought his son back. Immediately the mistake is revealed, and a confused Wildcat explains what happened with Shadra. He reassures the King, however, that his son is safely in Fox's care. Just then, Fox enters, still in his hypnotized state. Wildcat pours water on his head; he comes to and tells them that Shadra has Lion Cub. The King plans to find his son and fight Shadra to the death. In an effort to stop the King and save the cub, the three new friends – Wildcat, Fox and Marmoset – set out to try to set things right themselves ("We'll Bring Him Back").

The gang makes its way to Shadra's temple. Shadra is telling Lion Cub of his plan – he wants to make the Lion Cub his son, and they will rule over the other animals together – including the lions. In the meantime, Lion Cub is trapped in a cage. Shadra hears a noise made by the three and goes to hide and await the visitors. The three enter with their sunglasses on to protect them from Shadra's powers and begin to look for the key to the cage. In the dark, they must lift their glasses to find the key. Shadra makes his move. He hypnotizes them and puts them in the cage, warning them that if they further misbehave, he will put them under a deep sleep spell – turning them into zombies!

The three wonder how they are going to escape when, in the distance, they hear the voice of Miss Beaver making her rounds to visit all of the animals. Miss Beaver rescues the three and tells them of a way to ward off the magic of the black panther. They also need the help of the children in the audience. Knowing that they are protected from Shadra, the three get back into the cage and watch as Shadra begins the spell ("Shadra"). Miss Beaver distracts Shadra, and the three escape from the cage. In the ensuing chase, Wildcat is knocked to the ground, and Shadra loses his turban with the magic diamond. The others find Wildcat unconscious and fear the worst. However, after a tense moment, Wildcat awakens. Shadra, meanwhile, is stunned. He doesn't understand what has happened. It turns out that Shadra is not evil but was under the spell of the diamond turban. King Lion arrives, and the group explains the whole situation to him.

With everything sorted out, the King bestows honors on the entire group for their valiant efforts in rescuing the young cub and discovering important things about themselves... all but Wildcat, who is happy just the way he is ("Wildcat Won't Ever Change").