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Charlotte 13-Year-Old With Sickle Cell Plays Lead Role in Broadway’s ‘Lion King’

“The Lion King” opens Wednesday night at the Blumenthal Performing Arts Center in uptown, and a local teenager is in the spotlight in the lead role as Simba.

Ramon Reed, 13, stars on Broadway as Simba, but Charlotte is his hometown. Reed, who has sickle cell disease, requested to join the performance in the Queen City that runs until Sept.

“It’s another chance every night to inspire new kids, adults, senior citizens, to do whatever they love,” Reed said.

Reed’s mom Rosalyn Hart travels with him. In one year, Reed went from acting in local plays to the Big Apple.

“It has been an emotional, but exciting roller coaster,” Rosalyn Hart said. On the road, Hart is his teacher and his caregiver.