EF GO Blog | EF Global Site (English)
The latest on travel, languages and culture by EF Education First
MenuFree Brochure

8 must-see musicals in New York

8 must-see musicals in New York

If you’re heading to New York to study English or simply taking a trip to the Big Apple, a musical needs to be on top of your bucket list. Broadway, the iconic boulevard, is home to over 40 famous theaters. You can watch anything from musicals, plays, and comedy shows on this distinguished street. 

But with so many amazing shows to choose from, deciding which one to see can be a challenge. So — to give you a helping hand — here’s our list of 8 must-see musicals that are currently in production in New York City to help you decide. 

1. & Juliet – Stephen Sondheim Theatre

This modern reimagining of Shakespeare’s classic ‘Romeo and Juliet’ tells the story of Juliet as she embarks on a journey of self-discovery. Instead of accepting her tragic fate, she lives on and is determined to take control of her destiny. Along with a group of friends and her loyal nurse, Juliet experiences the ups and downs of her newfound freedom and questions everything she knows about love and the society she lives in. This musical blends Shakespearean language and iconic pop songs to create a unique soundtrack that will leave you smiling.

2. Aladdin – New Amsterdam Theatre

This dazzling Disney musical will have you dancing in your seat and singing along to all the famous classics. Watch as Aladdin, a poor boy in the city of Agrabah, uncovers a magical lamp that contains a powerful genie. The genie can grant Aladdin three wishes, and he uses these wishes to turn himself into a Prince so he can win over the beautiful Princess Jasmine. But Aladdin soon discovers that true happiness and love come from within, but can he still win Jasmine’s heart? The show boasts beautiful and vibrant costumes, high-energy choreography, and incredibly catchy songs, suitable for all ages. 

3. Chicago – Ambassador Theatre

Set in the Roaring Twenties, this musical tells the story of the dynamic duo, Velma Kelly and Roxie Hart. Roxie, a young woman who dreams of fame and stardom, becomes entangled in the scandalous murder of her ex-boyfriend and ends up in prison. She meets Velma, a famous criminal who is convicted of killing her husband and her sister after they were caught having an affair. Together they navigate and manipulate the corrupt legal system and media frenzy that surrounds them, to become innocent stars. The musical is filled with jazz tunes, and a satirical take on fame and the pursuit of the American Dream.

4. Hadestown – Walter Kerr Theatre 

Hadestown is a reimagining of the ancient Greek myth of Orpheus and Eurydice set in a post-apocalyptic world. When Euradice sells her soul to the King of the Underworld in return for food, shelter, and safety, Orpheus, a gifted musician, hopes to save his one true love. Orpheus travels down to Hadestown, a hell-like place ruled by a very charismatic yet sinister Hades, to save her. On his journey down below, Orpheus encounters characters such as Hermes and Persephone and learns more about the Greek tragedy. This musical is full of beautiful soul music and eaves a wonderful story of love and sacrifice. It may just leave you obsessed with Greek mythology. 

5. Sweeny Todd: The Demon Barber of Fleet Street – Lunt-Fontanne Theatre 

This dark and macabre musical tells the chilling story of a vengeful barber called Benjamin Barker as he seeks revenge on those who have wronged him. Set in Victorian London, Barker adopts the alias Sweeny Todd and seeks the alliance of pie shop owner, Mrs. Lovitt who has dark intentions, and soon the streets of London become a stage for their gruesome acts. The two concoct a spine-tingling plan to seek retribution, using their specialties to mask their murderous ways. The haunting music and lyrics in this musical will leave you shaking in your boots. This one is a real thriller of a musical!

6. Harry Potter and the Cursed Child – Lyric Theatre

Dive into the wizarding world of Harry Potter with this two-part musical full of magic, adventure, friendship, and mystery! Set 19 years after the events of the final book, the story follows a now-adult Harry, an employee at the Ministry of Magic, and his son Albus who is starting his first year at Hogwarts. When a chilling mystery begins to unravel at Hogwarts, Albus forms an unexpected friendship with Scorpius Malfoy, the son of Harry’s former enemy, Draco Malfoy. Together, they seek to put an end to the treacherous plot that puts the wizarding world at risk, while mending the relationship between the two families. 

7. Back to the Future: The Musical – Winter Garden Theatre

Based on the iconic 1985 film, this musical will let you back in time with Marty McFly! When a teenage Marty finds himself accidentally using the ‘DeLorean’ time machine, invented by the very eccentric scientist Doc Brown, he travels back to 1955. Now Marty must navigate the past to ensure his existence. He faces the unexpected challenge of helping his young parents fall in love and overcomes bizarre hurdles along the way. Drawing inspiration from the original score, this light-hearted, comical, and nostalgic musical adds a new breath of life to this timeless classic. 

8. Little Shop of Horrors – Westside Theatre Upstairs

This dark comedy follows nerdy florist assistant Seymour as he discovers an exotic and rather mysterious plant he names Audrey II. He believes that this new plant will bring more customers to the struggling florist, as well as impress his crush. However, Seymour is left with a moral dilemma after he realizes Audrey II has a thirst for human blood that ultimately leads to its rapid and impressive growth. Seymour must face the decision of sacrificing the ones he loves or destroying the plant altogether. Dance along to the incredibly catchy tunes and laugh at the show’s ridiculousness!

We hope this list of fabulous musicals helps you decide which show you should see when you’re next in New York City. You won’t regret going to see a Broadway masterpiece!

Explore the best of New YorkStudy abroad
Get the latest on travel, languages and culture in the GO newsletterSign me up

Test your English in minutes

Learn more