Music theatre lovers, this is for you! If you whistle Les Mis in the shower and hum Hamilton while you cook, let us give you some recommendations for your music theatre bucket list. Have you ever heard about the Golden Age of Broadway?
The Golden Age started during World War II and ran through the 1950s, spawning some of the most famous musicals in the world. Superstar composers and lyricists like Rodgers&Hammerstein, Bernstein, Sondheim were working at a fast and furious pace, with music theatre quickly becoming the trendy entertainment source for New Yorkers and highlighting Broadway as the music theatre Mecca we know today.
To celebrate, we have put together our list of Top 8 Must See Musicals.
Have a browse through the list: we have handpicked the best songs from each for our next event Bright Lights and Big Dreams, where a star cast led by Ben Mingay and Antoinette Halloran will perform them alongside the Adelaide Symphony Orchestra. See you at Her Majesty’s Theatre on 11 and 12 November?
💕 WEST SIDE STORY
Star-crossed lovers meet in the midst of a dance-heavy gang war is one of the most popular music theatre pieces ever written, both in terms of lyrics and music: Bernstein and Sondheim, do we need to say more?
🏛 A FUNNY THING HAPPENED ON THE WAY TO THE FORUM
Set in ancient Rome, the story centers on Pseudolus, a lazy (but witty) slave who wishes to win his freedom by aiding his young master to win the heart of a girl. It’s a non-stop laugh fest where the road to romance is blocked with stunning surprises.
💇♂️ SWEENEY TODD
Ben Mingay and Antoinette Halloran left hearts racing and spines tingling long after the curtain had fallen on State Opera’s 2021 season of this powerful horror tale. Now they will reprise their Sweeney Todd and Mrs Lovett’s roles for Bright Lights and Big Dreams.
The quintessential American musical: everyone has their own opinion about it (Just when you think it’s over, surprise — it’s not!), but there’s no doubt that it set the tone for all of the Golden Age musicals to come.
If you were among those who scored a ticket to our 2021 production, you’ll know Carousel might just be the most challenging and complex musical in the Rodgers&Hammerstein empire, full of epic music and anthems that bring down the house.
🎶 A LITTLE NIGHT MUSIC
Sondheim’s romantic nineteenth-century waltz whisks us away to a weekend in the Swedish country, where the tangled web of affairs between an actress and the men who love her brings endless surprises, hilariously witty and heartbreakingly moving moments.
🌳 INTO THE WOODS
James Lapine and Stephen Sondheim combine everyone’s favourite storybook characters for a timeless, modern masterpiece. Each and every song in this Tony Award-winning production is beautiful, moving, and a cracking ear worm!
Candide is technically an operetta, but it can’t be excluded in this must-listen list. Leonard Bernstein’s funny, philosophical, and fast-paced take on Voltaire’s biting satire will have you hooked (and tapping toes!) from its very overture.