"An American in Paris" on Broadway

"An American in Paris" the musical: Everything You Need To Know

Show-Score | By Carissa Chesanek | Mar 15, 2017

Learn everything you need to know about An American In Paris at Show Score, from cast to plot, to what made the show unique and successful.

"An American in Paris" "An American in Paris" | By An American in Paris

"An American in Paris" Broadway is a modern romantic musical that opened in April 2015, and was stemmed from the 1950’s George Gershwin and Ira Gershwin film. The story circles around two young characters, an American soldier named Jerry Mulligan and a French ballerina, Lise Dassin.

After World War II, Jerry decides to stay in Paris to try and make it as a famous painter and in the meantime, stumbles across Lise, who instantly captivates him with her charm. But she’s a complete mystery to Jerry, revealing barely any information to him about who she really is, which makes her all the more enticing to this American in Paris.

Jerry’s newfound friends, Adam Hochberg (a war vet) and Henri Baurel (a rich kid with the dream to sing) keep him company when he’s not daydreaming about Lise or painting, talking about the future of the world and their dreams they hope to achieve. But when Jerry learns of Henri’s romantic relationship with Lise - and that he’s eager to propose to her - things get more complicated. Not only is Lise Henri’s leading girl, but she has a family secret that also keeps her closely tied to him. 

As Lise continues to dance and make her mark in the ballet world, she gasps her profound love for Jerry and realizes that a family secret shouldn’t tie her down to another man she doesn’t want to marry. This story of love and all of it's complications makes "An American in Paris" a musical to remember.

There are many reasons why the "An American in Paris" musical has enchanted its audience since it opened on stage - and why it has won several Tony Awards. One stand out element is the mix of classic song and dance musical acts (including, “I Got Rhythm,” and “But Not For Me”) with professional ballet dance routines. Noted for its impressive choreography (and it is surely impressive), this Broadway show takes the traditional musical to another level. The music in "American in Paris" displays many moods of the characters and the setting, creating the illusion of desire, sadness and more in the grace of the ballet.  

But the dancing isn’t the only aspect to that made "An American in Paris" successful on Broadway. The set design of Bob Crowley is brilliant, offering a vibrant, engaging atmosphere scene after scene. The staging is changed with such elegance that it’s a dance act on its own, moving the scenes around like an effortless art form. The lighting, by Natasha Katz, also helps illuminate the scenes with precision, playing from soft to bright to emphasis the richness of the stage. The "An American in Paris" musical is truly something to behold.

The original cast of "An American in Paris" on Broadway featured Robert Fairchild as Jerry Mulligan and Leanne Cope as Lise Dassin. Alongside the two main stars are Matthew Scott as Adam Hochberg and Max von Essen as Henri Baurel.

Love "An American in Paris" the musical? Seen it on Broadway? Let us know in the comments!