Lights, curtains, action! It’s glamour galore at the famous theater district of New York City: Stretching from West 40th Street to 54th Street, Sixth Avenue to Eighth Avenue, and including Time Square, the theater district is one of the most iconic and liveliest areas in Midtown Manhattan. Although many of these Broadway shows have been performed in Singapore before, there’s nothing like watching the local cast sing and shimmy their way into your heart.
From classics like the Phantom of the Opera to childhood favourites like the Lion King, get ready to be dazzled by these top four award-winning Broadway shows.
Gershwin Theatre, 222 W 51st St, New York, NY 10019
Everything in the Wicked musical is spectacular, from the super talented cast and witty script to the stunning costumes and sets. And the world recognises this stroke of Broadway brilliance. Bagging numerous awards, Wicked is one of Broadway’s top-selling shows.
Based on Gregory Maguire’s novel Wicked: The Life and Times of the Wicked Witch of the West (1995), the story is set in Oz, as inspired by the children’s classic The Wizard of Oz. It is a tale about two witches, Elphaba and Glinda, as they experience friendship, rivalry, and more in an epic story about good and evil. Fun fact: The original cast has Idina Menzel (also known for singing Let it Go, from Frozen) starring as the wicked witch, Elphaba.
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#2 The Phantom of the Opera
Majestic Theatre, 247 West 44th Street, New York, NY 10036
A timeless classic, the Phantom of the Opera first opened in January 1988, making it Broadway’s longest running show ever. The Tony Award-winning horror-romance story has enchanted audiences for decades, and continues to do so at the Majestic Theatre.
Set in the Paris Opera House, the story follows the relationship of the Phantom, the mysterious and hideous composer who haunts the opera house, and Christine, a rising soprano starlet. The score features many big hits like the Music of the Night, All I Ask of You, and The Phantom of the Opera, and has starred some of Broadway’s greatest performers like Sarah Brightman, Michael Crawford, and more.
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Ambassador Theatre, 219 West 49th Street, New York, NY 10019
The glitzy musical that inspired Hollywood film (of the same name), starring Catherine Zeta-Jones and Richard Gere, Chicago is yet another Broadway favourite.
A satire of celebrity culture, Chicago is loosely based off the true story of two women (real names Beulah Annan and Belva Gaertner) who were tried for murder in 1924. In the Broadway account of events, Velma Kelly is accused of killing her cheating husband and sister, and is joined by charming lawyer, Billy Flynn, who helps her fight her case. Things get complicated when a Roxie Hart joins the party–also accused of murder, Roxie vies with Velma for both fame and Billy.
#4 The Lion King
Minskoff Theatre, 200 W 45 Street, New York, NY 10036
Watch the African Serengeti come to live as Broadway tells one of Disney’s most well loved stories–the Lion King! Directed by Julie Taymor, the musical features creative use of elaborate costumes and puppetry to portray the animal characters.
With Simba, Mufasa, and Scar as household names, this iconic fairy tale needs no introduction. Suitable for adults and children alike, the Lion King is the highest grossing production in the world (of any entertainment medium). To put it in perspective, it grossed over $$6.2 billion, which is more than double that of the box office hit movie Avatar ($2.8 billion)!
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