Boston | 2h 30m | Already closed

Something Rotten!

From 42 critic and 6,421 member reviews
Members say: Clever, Entertaining, Funny, Hilarious, Delightful

About the show

After a laugh-filled run on Broadway and ten 2015 Tony Award nominations, this musical comedy about the very first musical kicks off its national tour at the Boston Opera House. More…

This mash-up of 16th-century Shakespeare and 21st-century Broadway tells the story of brothers Nick and Nigel Bottom, two playwrights stuck in the shadow of that Renaissance rock star Will Shakespeare. When a soothsayer foretells the next big thing in theater, the Bottom brothers set out to write the world’s first musical. 

2h 30m | Already closed | Boston Opera House (Boston)

Showbiz 411

for a previous production "I haven’t had such a good, silly time at the theater since 'Spamalot' or maybe 'The Producers' as I did last night at 'Something Rotten.' The new musical is possibly the Best Musical Tony winner and definitely a strong nominee after its opening last night...'Something Rotten' is just a pure delight." Full Review


for a previous production "One cannot stop basking in the memories of the unmitigated joy which has just played out over the course of two hours and thirty minutes of sheer, unadulterated bliss...As a piece of ribald, shameless and hysterical musical theatre, 'Something Rotten' is unrivaled on Broadway at present. It is fresh, fabulous and frenetic fun...go see 'Something Rotten' – it will restore your faith that musical theatre can be magical in every way." Full Review

New York Post

for a previous production "Everything from story to song clicks into place, the actors are firing on all cylinders — and the audience knows it’s watching something special. Now, that something special is 'Something Rotten!,' a deliriously entertaining new musical comedy that is devilishly clever under its goofy exterior. Yep, this is a blockbuster." Full Review

The Associated Press

for a previous production ""Something Rotten!," written by three guys making their Broadway debuts, is fresh and hysterical and irreverent. It's easily the funniest thing to arrive on Broadway since "The Book of Mormon...led by director Casey Nicholaw at his exuberant, daffy best. There are tap dancing eggs, for God's sake...And this time, thanks to some of Broadway's best pros, these outsiders have created something far from rotten. Or a turd. It's awesome." Full Review


for a previous production "Casey Nicholaw has directed with the secure speed that he gave 'The Book of Mormon'...One thing’s for sure. Karey and Wayne Kirkpatrick, who are siblings, have written something far more successful than the Bottom brothers ever could. 'Something Rotten!' contains more laughs than all our other current Broadway shows combined. That phenomenal first act production number won’t be all you’ll be applauding wildly." Full Review

As Her World Turns

for a previous production "This show is a riot and MUST SEE for musical theater fans...It’s a love letter to musical theater with samplings of famous show tunes scattered throughout." Full Review

New York Theatre Guide

for a previous production "'Something Rotten' is simply false advertising. Something Absolutely Brilliant would be closer to the mark, but I imagine modesty prevented those involved from telling the truth about this parody. It is, quite simply, the best musical I have seen in ages." Full Review

New York Magazine / Vulture

for a previous production "Nicholaw’s genius for reducing an audience to helpless giggles is on blazing display in Something Rotten! — a new show so steeped in the tradition that it often seems like a concordance. Anything you’ve ever liked in a musical comedy (and a few things you haven’t) are here, just waiting to sing-and-dance you into submission...It’s total silliness, of course; Nicholaw keeps the lights bright, the sound loud, and the plot moving at a furious boil. (That’s part of why it evaporates so quickly.)" Full Review


for a previous production "There is absolutely nothing rotten about the new musical 'Something Rotten!' In fact, I smell a hit. Right out of the Mel Brooks school of comedy, nothing is sacred and everything is funny! "Something Rotten” is red meat for theatre lovers – it’s clever, bodaciously funny, ridiculously tuneful; and even if Act II feels a bit overdone, audiences are sure to eat it up." Full Review


for a previous production "“Rotten!” paints musical theater culture in the same broad strokes that the “The Book of Mormon” used to satirize religion—everyone gets to be in on the joke. This new musical makes us do just enough work that we feel satisfied for picking up on them. Go for the production numbers and the big-hearted turns from the leads, whose enthusiasm ultimately proves even more infectious than the plague." Full Review

Stage Buddy

for a previous production "Its greatest achievement is combining all these elements and transcending parody because of how openly it wears its heart on its sleeve, it’s a show by musical lovers made to please other musical lovers...A blissfully entertaining show that doesn't pretend to contain anything particularly original." Full Review


for a previous production "A delightfully irreverent mash-up of Broadway musicals and Shakespeare that should keep audiences laughing for years to come...The love stories are slight. But director Casey Nicholaw compensates. He’s an expert at staging broad comedy without letting his cast resort to hamminess…It’s the writers, all making their Broadway debuts, who emerge as the biggest stars, imbuing 'Something Rotten!' with smart-alecky glee." Full Review

Off Script with Dan Dwyer

for a previous production "Seldom does the Great White Way see a sillier version of the highbrow and a smarter version of the lowbrow in one show. The laugh-a-minute book by Kirkpatrick and O’Farrell, observes all the conventional structure of the musical comedy genre, but transports it to a level of unadulterated fun not achieved often enough...Nicholaw moves the whole production in a seamless, happy-go-lucky whirlwind, which barely allows for the audience to stop laughing." Full Review

Hot Pepper Theater

for a previous production "It's like Monty Python for Shakespeare. The show is nothing substantial, it's fluff- hilarious fluff. If you like Spamalot you're going to like this show." Full Review


for a previous production "A rare theatrical event…a wonderful musical farce. Anyone who wants to go to the theatre and have a great time, unburdened by a complicated plot, listen to fun lyrics, and experience two acts of non-stop laughter…this “very new musical” should be their play of choice!" Full Review


for a previous production "'Something Rotten!' doesn't quite reach the game-changing heights of that blockbuster musical, but it will give you two and a half hours of hearty laughs...that the show is able to maintain its high level of lunacy without falling into a disappointing rut in the second act is a testament to Nicholaw, his cast, and his creative team." Full Review


for a previous production "Shamelessly silly parody of Broadway musicals — an outrageous spoof of all things Shakespeare...Although comic desperation descends on the second act, it’s still a deliriously funny show." Full Review


for a previous production "Musical theater aficionados will eat up the constant tongue-in-cheek references, not just to Shakespeare's works and characters, but to musicals generally. That said, not every joke is a home run. Those who don't attend the theater as often won't "get" all the insider references. What they will get is a terrific cast performing at the top of their game, peppy direction and choreography, and lots of colorful and varied design work." Full Review

New York Daily News

for a previous production "Supremely silly...the musical love child of “The Carol Burnett Show” and “Forbidden Broadway.” In other words, this showbiz offspring has some darn fine DNA. And a terrific core idea...And the formula works — mostly. Some tunes and dance pieces recur. So laughs dry up as “Something Rotten!” becomes a deju vu-sical. There’s compensation, though, including a mouthwatering production that looks like more than a million bucks." Full Review


for a previous production "Casey Nicholaw pulls out every trick in the theatrical book to keep you from laughing so hard and smiling so much you’re likely to overlook the show’s flaws until you’ve left the theater...yet, for all of its high points, something is missing from the show – a real heart." Full Review

The Wrap

for a previous production "The new musical 'Something Rotten!' offers something rare, as well as something recycled. The something rare is the opportunity for no fewer than three leading men to astonish us in entirely different ways...“Something Rotten!” turns into something recycled. “Omelette” tells the story of “Hamlet” by riffing on “The Phantom of the Opera,” “Les Miserables,” “Pippin,” “Annie,” and any other number of tuners." Full Review

The Hollywood Reporter

for a previous production "Smells like a hit, a very palpable hit...This is a big, brash meta-musical studiously fashioned in the mold of Monty Python's Spamalot, The Producers and The Book of Mormon, loaded with crowd-pleasing showstoppers, deliciously puerile gags and an infectious love of the form it so playfully skewers...Even if the show doesn't finish as strongly as it starts, its giddy high spirits prevail." Full Review


for a previous production ""Something Rotten!" may not be the tidiest new musical of the Broadway season, but it's by far the funniest...A high-spirited, gleefully acted, past-meets-present cultural mash-up, mixing high wit with low jokes. It exists for its individual comic and musical scenes, with plot coherence discarded as excess baggage." Full Review

Entertainment Weekly

for a previous production "This rambunctious, song-stuffed confection details the behind-the-scenes shenanigans of a musical’s creation...“A Musical” is such a showstopper it threatens to render the rest of the show something of a comparative damp squib, and the many subsequent jokes and numbers invoking the lunacy of musicals do become a little repetitive. What carries you through is the evident fun being had by the cast." Full Review

AM New York

for a previous production "With all its showmanship and silliness, 'Something Rotten!' begins on an extremely promising note, sustains it throughout act one, and then falters in act two, where attempts are made to resolve the haywire plot. Even so, “Something Rotten!” is a great deal of cartoonish fun." Full Review

Hilarious, Quirky

See it if Funny and entertaining. Loved the references and nods to other musicals during some of the numbers and the twist on Shakespeare classics.

Don't see it if If you don’t like musicals don’t see this!

Delightful, Entertaining, Funny, Great singing, Refreshing

See it if fan of other hit musicals and wanna laugh

Don't see it if not a fan of bright comedy musicals

Also Review from a Broadway performance from September 2016

Clever, Delightful, Entertaining, Funny, Must see

See it if If you enjoy humor and a new spin on Shakespeare.

Don't see it if If you don't like laughing.

Funny, Clever, Hilarious, Must see, Entertaining

See it if you like comedic musicals. I love how they reference so many other shows in hilarious ways throughout.

Don't see it if you have never seen a musical. You will still laugh, but it is way better when you can understand all of the references.

Entertaining, Hilarious, Great singing

See it if you can

Don't see it if you are not a lover of the MUSICAL

Great singing, Entertaining, Hilarious, Quirky, Funny

See it if You love musicals - there a lot of references to other musicals.

Don't see it if Don't like comedys.

Clever, Delightful, Entertaining, Funny, Hilarious

See it if you like fun, you are fun, and you like to talk about fun things. Because, you will be talking about this forever. Sometimes, you will sing.

Don't see it if you don't have a good sense of humor, or are unfamiliar with Broadway. Also if you are not a fun person. Then, stay away.

Entertaining, Funny, Great staging, Great writing, Must see

See it if Fantastic all around!

Don't see it if You don't want a good laugh

Ambitious, Funny, Great acting, Great singing, Great staging

See it if You like to laugh

Don't see it if You like serious plays

Clever, Entertaining, Hilarious, Must see, Great acting

See it if A wonderful take on Shakespeare. Would be enjoyable for anyone who likes over the top musicals.

Don't see it if It might not be as easy to understand if you live under a rock and don't know anything about Shakespeare or Broadway.

Entertaining, Hilarious, Must see, Refreshing, Clever

See it if you like Shakespeare (or like to see him attacked.) You like musicals and will get inside jokes.

Don't see it if You get offended with lines like "Don't be a penis, the man is a genius."

Clever, Delightful, Entertaining, Hilarious, Must see

See it if You love big splashy musical comedies?

Don't see it if If you don't like tongue in cheek humor.

Ambitious, Enchanting, Entertaining, Quirky, Refreshing

See it if You love classical Broadway, such an amazing show! Music was absolutely amazing

Don't see it if It's closed 😞

Funny, Entertaining, Clever

See it if you love references to other musicals and if you love or "hate" Shakespeare.

Don't see it if do not care about the world or if you are uncultured swine

Clever, Entertaining, Great singing, Great writing, Hilarious

See it if you love Shakespeare, to watch something hilarious, amazing stage and costume

Don't see it if this is a must see, you'll laugh very hard

Clever, Entertaining, Funny, Great acting, Great singing

See it if You enjoy musicals, especially happy and funny shows.

Don't see it if You don't like musicals or humor

Clever, Entertaining, Funny, Great acting, Delightful

See it if You have seen many other Broadway shows.

Don't see it if You are not a theatre goer in general as you will miss many of the clever references to other Broadway shows. However it will still be fun!

Funny, Great singing, Hilarious, Quirky, Must see

See it if you want to see a hilarious, feel-goof musical

Don't see it if you want a deep plot

Edgy, Great acting, Funny, Entertaining, Clever

See it if I was pleasantly surprised by this show. It was witty, clever and extremely funny.

Don't see it if Great show. I am glad I had the opportunity to see it.

Clever, Entertaining, Hilarious, Great singing, Great acting

See it if if you like anything Broadway, Shakespeare, or both... it's a must see. One of the few plays/musicals I would see again, and again.

Don't see it if you are uptight.

Hilarious, Huge, Great singing, Profound, Must see

See it if you want to laugh the entire time and be awed by spectacle

Don't see it if you're offended easily

Clever, Funny, Fluffy, Hilarious, Entertaining

See it if You are looking for a big dance number and appreciate musical/Shakespearian references

Don't see it if You don't like/know musical references and want a more emotional show

Entertaining, Great singing, Great writing, Hilarious, Must see

See it if you love musicals or want toe-tapping great entertainment!

Don't see it if you don't like musicals or don't like being entertained

Hilarious, Great writing, Great acting, Great singing, Entertaining

See it if You love to laugh and be entertained.

Don't see it if Don't like comedy.

Clever, Delightful, Funny

See it if you love Broadway puns

Don't see it if if you hate broadway puns

Cast & Creatives (40)