Top Ten Best Broadway shows and Why They Are So Beloved, Including Hamilton, Wicked, and the Book of Mormon
All Broadway productions want their show’s to be praised and recognized as one of the best Broadway shows of all time, but unfortunately for most of them, they are seldom remembered and are quickly forgotten. It can be near impossible to predict when a Broadway show is going to take off and many times there is no rhyme or reason for their acclaimed success. Many great Broadway shows fail at the box office.
Shows can go down in Broadway history for various reasons. Top shows may have incredible music/lyrics to go with it, an alluring or relatable story-line, high production value or a top-of-the-line cast who performs in it. From classic musical productions to hit comedy shows, there have been a few great Broadway shows that have changed the Broadway show business forever.
Below is a list of the “Best Broadway Shows of All Time” who have influenced, or helped shape, the Broadway show business to what it has become today.
The story of the man on the ten dollar bill has been Broadway's number one smash hit since its release. The show is performed with a unique combination of rap and song. The Hamilton show is so beloved, that Barack Obama remarked that a love for Hamilton was the only thing he had in common with Dick Cheney. Hamilton has received a staggering 11 Tony awards.
2. The Producers
In this hilarious musical based on the Mel Brooks film of the same name, a producer and an accountant must come up with the world's worst play as part of a money-making scheme. The two select the musical "Springtime for Hitler: A Gay Romp With Eva and Adolf at Berchtesgaden", dubbed "a love letter to Hitler" by its Nazi author. The Producers holds the record for most Tony awards ever received, with 12 awards.
3. The Phantom of the Opera
In The Phantom of the Opera, a young opera singer with much potential encounters a strange, mysterious figure that claims to be the angel of music sent by her dead father. The Phantom of the Opera holds the record for the longest running musical and the most performances of a musical and has been revived in countries across the world. The musical has won seven Tony awards.
4. The Book of Mormon
It seemed unlikely that the creators of South Park could come out with a successful Broadway musical, but The Book of Mormon is, in short, fantastic. The show is gut-splittingly funny, heartfelt, and a ride from start to finish. The play is about two Mormon missionaries who get sent to Uganda, and learn that life there is not the vacation they hoped for. The two run into an African warlord and his gang, and must confront their faith, relationship, and their worst nightmares.
5. Les Miserables
Les Miserables, often shortened to Les Mis, is a sung-through epic about the French revolution. In the story, Jean ValJean is sent to prison for stealing a loaf of bread, and tries to escape his criminal background after his release. The show is currently the fifth longest running Broadway musical.
6. West Side Story
West Side Story is a classic tale about the romance that blooms between an Italian boy and a Puerto Rican girl from rival gangs in the West Side of New York City. The story is a modern take on Romeo and Juliet and features memorable songs such as "Maria", "I Feel Pretty" and "Tonight". West Side Story was first performed in 1957 and has since spawned a movie. The musical was considered groundbreaking for its gritty subject matter and unique choreography.
From the elaborate set design to the soaring score, Wicked is a spectacle. Based on the book by Gregory Maguire, Wicked tells the tale of Elphaba, the green Wicked Witch of the West from the Wizard of Oz. In this version of the classic Oz tale, the witch is a sympathetic figure, instead of a villain, and strikes up an unlikely friendship with Glinda the Good Witch.
8. Kinky Boots
Kinky Boots is a heartwarming Broadway musical about an unlikely subject. The owner of a struggling shoe factory must find a new shoe demographic after he realizes that his current business model is no longer sustainable. After a chance encounter with a drag queen, he decides to make high heels for men. The musical won six Tony awards for the Broadway production, including Best Musical.
9. Fiddler on the Roof
Fiddler on the Roof is a tale about the mixing of old traditions and modern life. In the story, a poor Jewish family attempts to marry off their oldest daughter to an older man, but she refuses. Famous songs include "If I Were a Rich Man" and "Sunrise, Sunset".
Chicago is about the story of female murderers Roxy Hart and Velma Kelly and the fame and corruption that follows them as a result of their actions. Minimal sets and outfits allow the show to focus on the characters and songs. The show is the second longest running show on Broadway, behind Phantom of the Opera.
See Also Top 10 Worst Broadway Shows of All Time