KATONGA – Busch Gardens Tampa
Ka Tonga takes guests on a journey to the heart of Africa in a 35-minute musical celebration of animal folklore. The show follows a day in the lives of aspiring storytellers, called Griots, as they strive to become masters of their craft. To accomplish this rite of passage, the performers evoke traditional African stories to mesmerize and entertain the audience. Masterful puppet design, magical folklore, energetic original music and spectacular African-inspired dance combine to create the first theme park show of Broadway-production caliber.
Ka Tonga is the only one-act original musical commissioned by a corporation for a theme park environment. As impressive, Busch Gardens’ Moroccan Palace Theatre is the only legitimate full-scale Broadway-style theatre in a theme park on the entire East Coast.
A cast of eighteen including the Griots, puppeteers, dancers and acrobats combine amazing talents to bring the show to life. In addition to featuring elaborate and whimsical costumes, the production uses larger-than-life animal puppets to create imagery sure to awe viewers. The show closes with musicians, singers and drummers surrounding the audience for a giant finale.
After 6 years, 10,000 shows and over 1,000 performers, the show closed September 2010.
KATONGA received an international award honoring its excellence in live theatrical production by Big E Award for Best Live Performance from IAAPA (International Association of Amusement Parks and Attractions)