A musical is a type of play that features singing and dancing. The music is arranged by a composer, lyricist, or a combination of both. Music is often based on a book and is used to guide the production. Musicals are popular entertainment and have played to packed houses around the world. They are usually a popular choice for theatergoers, because of the high quality performances and lavish sets.
Some of the most beloved musicals of all time include the classics My Fair Lady, Fiddler on the Roof, West Side Story, and Oklahoma!. These shows are considered to be among the best musicals ever produced. While most of these are produced on the Broadway stage, some are produced in regional theaters, where they tend to be less expensive.
Other classics include Cats, Aladdin, and Beauty and the Beast. All three of these musicals were written by British composer Andrew Lloyd Webber. He is a talented writer, and he crafted an entertaining narrative around the music of Swedish supergroup ABBA.
Porgy and Bess is another musical that exemplifies the diversity of the Broadway genre. This show is a fusion of opera and musical. It is a groundbreaking show that explores the lives of an African American and a crippled man living in the slums of Charleston, South Carolina. Although this show had a complicated story, it provided the blueprint for future musicals.
Another musical that has been produced frequently is Hair. This musical defied the expectations of musical theater by integrating dance and music into the plot. Rather than being a conventional romantic comedy, this musical portrayed a love triangle between a cocky cowboy and an emotionally disturbed farmhand. It also explored sexual revolution and rebellion.
Another example is the jukebox musical Mamma Mia!. This was a highly successful musical that incorporated a series of popular songs from the ABBA songbook into an engaging narrative. Ultimately, the musical opened the door for more jukebox musicals.
In the mid-80s, pop/rock musicals tended to be comedies-horror shows. One exception to this was Little Shop of Horrors. That musical was inspired by the 1960 film of the same name.
In addition to being a musical, some of the best films of the 1960s included Ragtime and The Cradle Will Rock. Both deals with historical American racism. As a result, they were adapted into live-action film musicals. During the early 1990s, film musicals were virtually non-existent. Exceptions to this trend include Victor/Victoria, Evita, and Rent.
Another classic is A Chorus Line. This was the first musical to achieve widespread popularity with audiences. In fact, it was so popular that it became the longest-running musical on Broadway. For six years, it played at the Joseph Papp’s Public Theater in lower Manhattan. In the end, it won the Pulitzer Prize.
Although some of these musicals have been re-enacted, others have continued to produce new, successful musicals. For example, Hamilton is a show that is pulling young people back into the theater. And, while many of the best musicals of all time were produced in New York, they are starting to be developed in other parts of the country.