Best Broadway Shows for Out-of-Towners


From long-running crowd-pleasers to recently opened hits, these Broadway blockbusters are beloved by the Show-Score community. 

This all-ages musical spectacle tells the untold true story of the Witches of Oz.

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Based on the novel by Gregory Maguire, 'Wicked' looks at what happened in the Land of Oz…but from a different angle. Long before Dorothy crash lands her house in Oz, there is another young woman, Elphaba, born with emerald-green skin—smart, fiery, misunderstood, and possessing an extraordinary talent. When she meets a bubbly and popular blonde, Glinda, their initial rivalry turns into the unlikeliest of friendships…until the world decides to call one “good,” and the other one “wicked.”

The score by Stephen Schwartz ('Godspell,' 'Pippin,' 'The Prince of Egypt') includes the songs 'Defying Gravity,' 'Popular,' and 'The Wizard and I.'

'Wicked' opened in 2003 and in 2019 became the fifth-longest-running show in Broadway history.

2017 Tony winner for Best Musical, this show is about being young and surviving the modern world.

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Winner of six Tony Awards including for Best Musical, this show quickly gained a cult following. Pasek and Paul's catchy and emotional score, which includes 'Waving Through a Window,' poignantly tells the story of a socially anxious teen, raised by a single mom, who struggles to fit in at school. When a classmate commits suicide, a lie puts Evan Hansen at the center of the tragedy. But as his social currency skyrockets, Evan is forced to make a decision: Will he give himself over to the fantasy he’s created, or will he bite the bullet and risk losing everything he’s ever wanted?

The Tony-winning book of the musical is by Steven Levenson and the show is directed by Michael Greif ('Rent,' 'Next To Normal').

Evan Hansen is currently being played by Zachary Noah Piser, who made history as the first Asian-American actor to play the role full time.

Puppets and live actors create a magical world to tell the story of Simba's rise to the throne.

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The worldwide sensation and winner of six Tony Awards, including Best Musical, Best Direction and Best Costumes by Julie Taymor, is based on the beloved 1994 animated Disney movie. Simba will someday inherit the throne of the Pridelands, but he isn't quite ready. When his devious Uncle Scar murders King Mufasa, Simba flees to escape his guilt. Time and new friends keep Simba company until his past comes back to remind him of his rightful place.

The music is by international superstar Elton John with lyrics by Tim Rice. The score includes 'Can You Feel The Love Tonight' and 'Circle of Life.' 

The musical is the third-longest-running show on Broadway - and the eighth longest-running show in the West End - and is notable for director Julie Taymor's concept which incorporates puppets to bring the animals to life.

A charming true story of a tiny Canadian town that cared for 7000 grounded travelers post-9/11.

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On September 11, 2001 the world changed, and the tiny town of Gander opened its doors for 6,579 stranded passengers. 'Come From Away' details the days following 9/11 as Gander prepared their town to host double their population; where people of all kinds meet, connect, grieve, and move through trauma together, finding hope in local traditions and new friendships.

Christopher Ashley won a Tony for his direction of the show in which an ensemble of actors play multiple characters with little more than chairs for props in this powerful and heartwrenching musical about humanity and kindness during dark times.

The musical is by Canadian husband and wife team Irene Sankoff and David Hein, who prior to 'Come From Away' had a Toronto Fringe hit with their first show, 'My Mother’s Lesbian Jewish Wiccan Wedding.'

Two teenage missionaries are sent to Africa to spread the word of Jesus Christ. What could go wrong?

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When two Mormon missionaries are sent to Uganda to spread the word of God, they quickly learn the local villagers are not as excited as they are. In a world full of AIDS, famine, and armed conflict, two best friends find love, healing, and a renewed faith in The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter Day Saints. This production took home nine Tony Awards in 2011, including Best Musical.

The musical is a satire, but is in the style of an old-fashioned Broadway musical, with big musical numbers.

The score and book are written by Trey Parker and Matt Stone, the creators of 'South Park,' and Robert Lopez, who wrote the music for 'Frozen' with Kristen Anderson-Lopez. Robert Lopez is the first artist to double EGOT (winning an Emmy, Grammy, Oscar, and Tony).

The Tony and Grammy Award-winning Carole King musical tells the inspiring true story of one woman's remarkable journey from teenage songwriter to the Rock & Roll Hall of Fame.

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Long before she was Carole King, chart-topping music legend, she was Carol Klein, Brooklyn girl with passion and chutzpah. She fought her way into the record business as a teenager and, by the time she reached her twenties, had the husband of her dreams and a flourishing career writing hits for the biggest acts in rock ‘n’ roll. But it wasn’t until her personal life began to crack that she finally managed to find her true voice. Featuring over two dozen pop classics, including "You've Got a Friend," "One Fine Day," "Up on the Roof," "You've Lost That Lovin' Feeling," "Will You Love Me Tomorrow," and "Natural Woman."

This classic Andrew Lloyd Webber musical is the longest running in Broadway history.

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From the depths below the Paris Opera House, the Phantom will stop at nothing to promote his young muse, Christine Daaé, to stardom. When Christine falls in love with a prominent theatre manager, the Phantom wastes no time trying to win her back through song.

The show is based on the 1910 novel by Gaston Leroux. With iconic songs such as ‘Angel of Music’, ‘Music of the Night’, ‘The Phantom of the Opera’, and many more, this Andrew Lloyd Webber classic is the longest running musical in Broadway history. It opened in London in 1986 and on Broadway in 1988.

The musical was directed by the late Harold Prince, the director and producer who had a huge impact on American musical theater.

"Waitress" is back on Broadway starring the show's creator, Sara Bareilles as pie maker Jenna.

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Jenna is a waitress and expert pie maker in a small town who dreams of a way out of her loveless marriage. A baking contest in a nearby county and the town’s new doctor may offer her a chance at a fresh start, while her fellow waitresses offer their own recipes for happiness. But Jenna must summon the strength and courage to rebuild her own life. Directed by Tony winner Diane Paulus.

This Tony Award winning farce portrays the doomed opening night of The Murder at Haversham Manor.

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The thespian troupe of Cornley University is putting on a production of The Murder at Haversham Manor, but they could use a few more weeks of rehearsals. From dropped lines to dropped set pieces, by the end everything (and everyone) will drop at least once in this hit farce.

'The Play That Goes Wrong' by Henry Lewis, Jonathan Sayer, and Henry Shields premiered in London in 2012 and won an Olivier for Best New Comedy. It opened on Broadway in 2017 where it played until 2019 before transferring Off-Broadway to New World Stages.

The play is notable for its intricate scenic design by Nigel Hook, which won a Tony.

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A long-running revival of Kander and Ebb's satirical musical about lust, treachery, and murder.

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Currently the longest running American musical on Broadway, “Chicago” is the dark but sensuous story of Roxie and Velma, two murderesses behind bars competing for the spotlight. Iconic songs include 'All That Jazz' and 'Razzle Dazzle,' and the choreography is inspired by the late Bob Fosse.

The musical is based on Maurine Dallas Watkins' 1926 play and has music by John Kander, lyrics by Fred Ebb, and book by Ebb and Bob Fosse.

The original production of 'Chicago' opened in 1975 and ran until 1977. The current production has been much more successful, running for over 25 years. It started as as a concert for the City Center Encores! series in 1996 and transferred to Broadway where it is still playing today. Winner of six Tony Awards, including the 1997 Tony for musical revival.