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April 22, 2020

Escapist Musicals


Nothing transports us quite like the magic of musical comedy! These great shows will whisk you away to a trouble-free world of love, laughter, song and dance.  

Amour by Michel Legrand, Didier van Cauwelaert, Marcel Aymé & Jeremy Sams
(Dramatic Comedy / 4f, 4m)
Quirky and a bit absurdist, Michel LeGrand’s singular Broadway musical is a perfect escape from reality. Set in Paris shortly after World War II, Amour concerns the meek and unassuming Dusoleil, a beleaguered clerk who secretly pines for the lovely but unhappily married Isabelle. When Dusoleil inexplicably develops the ability to walk through walls, he becomes a Parisian Robin Hood, stealing from the rich and giving to the poor.

Anastasia: The Musical by Terrence McNally, Stephen Flaherty & Lynn Ahrens
(Dramatic Comedy / 4f, 5m, 1 girl)
A spectacular new musical about discovering who you are and defining who you’re meant to be. From Tony winners Terrence McNally, Stephen Flaherty and Lynn Ahrens, creators of such Broadway classics as Ragtime and Once On This Island, this dazzling show transports its audience from the twilight of the Russian Empire to the euphoria of Paris in the 1920s, as a brave young woman sets out to discover the mystery of her past. Pursued by a ruthless Soviet officer determined to silence her, Anya enlists the aid of a dashing con man and a lovable ex-aristocrat. Together, they embark on an epic adventure to help her find home, love and family.

Annie Get Your Gun by Irving Berlin, Herbert Fields, Dorothy Fields & Peter Stone
(Comedy / 3f, 6m, 2 girls, 1 boy)
Irving Berlin’s classic crowd-pleaser is sure to make you forget your troubles. Annie Oakley is the best shot around, so Colonel Buffalo Bill persuades her to join his Wild West Show. Instantly, Annie falls head over heels for the show’s dashing headliner, Frank Butler. Annie and Frank’s up-and-down rivalry/romance (typified by their duet “Anything You Can Do”) culminates in a rousing, sure-fire finale. The show hits the mark every time in a testament to the power of female ingenuity.

Anything Goes by Cole Porter, P.G. Wodehouse, Guy Bolton, Howard Lindsay, Russel Crouse, Timothy Crouse & John Weidman
(Comedy / 3f, 4m)
This hilarious shipboard romp, set to a magical Cole Porter score, is sure to carry you away! When a couple of two-bit gangsters stow away among a coterie of wealthy socialites, the luxury liner S. S. American becomes a floating circus of deception, revelry, romance and mistaken identity. With its irreverent book and shimmering songs, Anything Goes is Delightful, Delicious, and De-Lovely.

The Best Little Whorehouse In Texas by Carol Hall, Peter Masterson & Larry L. King
(Comedy / 14f, 13m)
This happy-go-lucky view of small-town vice and statewide political side-stepping recounts the good times and the demise of the Chicken Ranch, known since the 1850s as one of the better pleasure palaces in all of Texas. Governors, senators, mayors, and even victorious college football teams frequent Miss Mona’s cozy bordello, until that Puritan nemesis Watchdog focuses his television cameras and his righteous indignation on the institution.

Bye Bye Birdie by Lee Adams, Charles Strouse & Michael Stewart
(Comedy / 6f, 5m)
A loving send-up of the 1950s, small-town America, teenagers, and rock & roll, Bye Bye Birdie remains as fresh and vibrant as ever. Teen heartthrob Conrad Birdie has been drafted, so he chooses All-American girl Kim MacAfee for a very public farewell kiss. Featuring a tuneful high-energy score, plenty of great parts for teens, and a hilarious script, Birdie continues to delight audiences around the world.

Cinderella (Broadway Version) by Richard Rodgers, Oscar Hammerstein II, Douglas Carter Beane
(Comedy / 5f, 4m)
Rodgers & Hammerstein’s Cinderella is the new Broadway adaptation of the classic musical, sure to sweep you away from life’s daily drudgeries. This contemporary take on the classic tale features Rodgers & Hammerstein’s most beloved songs, including “In My Own Little Corner,” “Impossible/It’s Possible,” and “Ten Minutes Ago,” alongside an up-to-date, hilarious and romantic libretto by Tony Award-nominee Douglas Carter Beane.

Crazy for You® by George Gershwin, Ira Gershwin, Ken Ludwig, Mike Ockrent, Guy Bolton & John McGowan
(Comedy / 3f, 4m)
A zany rich-boy-meets-hometown-girl romantic comedy, Crazy For You® tells the story of young New York banker Bobby Child, who is sent to Deadrock, Nevada, to foreclose on a rundown theatre. In Deadrock, Bobby falls for spunky Polly Baker, the theatre owner’s daughter. But Polly takes an instant dislike to the city slicker, so Bobby vows – through cunning, razzmatazz, and a hilarious case of mistaken identity – to win Polly’s heart and save the theatre. Memorable Gershwin tunes from the score include “I Got Rhythm,” “They Can’t Take That Away from Me” and “Embraceable You.”

Dames at Sea by George Haimsohn, Robin Miller & Jim Wise
(Comedy / 3f, 4m)
A long-running Off-Broadway hit that brought stardom to Bernadette Peters, this campy show celebrates Hollywood musicals of the ’30s. Sweet little Ruby travels from faraway Hometown, USA to big-time New York City in hopes of making it big on Broadway. By sheer dumb luck she meets another boy from Hometown, USA: Dick, a sailor, who also has ambitions as a songwriter. Ruby begins in the chorus, and by the end of the day, in true Hollywood fashion, Dick saves her doomed Broadway show with a smash tune, as Ruby becomes a star on the deck of a battleship, which just happens to be passing by.

42nd Street by Harry Warren, Al Dubin, Michael Stewart, Mark Bramble & Bradford Ropes
(Comedy / 7f, 6m)
Come along and listen to the lullaby of Broadway! 42nd Street celebrates Broadway, Times Square and the magic of show biz with wit, humor and pizzazz. At the height of the Great Depression, aspiring chorus girl Peggy Sawyer comes to the big city from Allentown PA, and soon lands her first big job in the ensemble of a glitzy new Broadway show. But just before opening night, the leading lady breaks her ankle. Will Peggy be able to step in and become a star? The score is chock-full of Broadway standards, including “You’re Getting To Be A Habit With Me,” “We’re In the Money,” “Lullaby of Broadway” and “Shuffle Off to Buffalo.”

Glimpses of the Moon by Tajlei Levis & John Mercur
io, Based on the novel by Edith Wharton
(Dramatic Comedy / 3f, 3m)
Set amid the whirl of 1922 Manhattan society, this “sparkling valentine to the Jazz Age” features a jazzy danceable score and a timeless romantic story. With plenty of friends but little money, Susy Branch and her friend Nick Lansing devise a clever scheme to live beyond their means. They’ll marry and live off the wedding gifts, while they help one another secure more suitable millionaire spouses. The plan works perfectly – until they fall in love.

Hello, Dolly! by Michael Stewart & Jerry Herman, based on the play by Thornton Wilder
(Comedy / 5f, 4m)
You’re gonna find adventure in the evening air! This musical adaptation of Thornton Wilder’s hit play The Matchmaker bursts with humor, romance, energetic dance, and some of the greatest songs in musical theatre history. The romantic and comic exploits of Dolly Gallagher-Levi, turn-of-the-century matchmaker and “woman who arranges things,” are certain to transport you away from all life’s worries. The show’s knockout score includes “Put On Your Sunday Clothes,” “Before the Parade Passes By,” “It Only Takes a Moment” and the showstopping title number.

Holiday Inn by Irving Berlin, Gordon Greenberg, Chad Hodge
(Comedy / 3f, 3m, 1 boy)
Based on the classic film, this joyous stage musical features thrilling dance numbers, laugh-out-loud comedy and a parade of hit Irving Berlin songs. When song-and-dance man Jim leaves show business to settle down in a Connecticut farmhouse, he soon finds life just isn’t the same without a bit of razzle dazzle. Before long, Jim and Linda, a spirited schoolteacher with talent to spare, turn the farmhouse into a fabulous inn with dazzling performances to celebrate each holiday from Thanksgiving to the Fourth of July. The joyful score includes “Blue Skies,” “Easter Parade,” “Steppin’ Out With My Baby,” “Heat Wave,” “White Christmas” and “Cheek to Cheek.”

Joseph and the Amazing Technicolor Dreamcoat by Tim Rice & Andrew Lloyd Webber
(Comedy / 2f, 16m)
Sha la la Joseph, you’re doing fine! One of the most enduring shows of all time, Joseph and the Amazing Technicolor Dreamcoat is sure to transport you to a magical musical world. A reimagining of the Biblical story of Joseph, the show follows patriarch Jacob, his favored son Joseph, Joseph’s eleven brothers and the coat of many colors. The score is full of catchy songs in a variety of styles, from a parody of French ballads (“Those Canaan Days”), to country-western (“One More Angel in Heaven”) and calypso (“Benjamin Calypso”), along with the unforgettable classics “Any Dream Will Do” and “Close Every Door.”

Meet Me in St. Louis by Hugh Martin, Ralph Blane, Hugh Wheeler & Sally Benson
(Dramatic Comedy / 7f, 5m)
Based on the heartwarming MGM film, Meet Me In St. Louis is a rare treasure in the musical theatre: a wholesome and enchanting portrait of a turn-of-the-century American family. It is the summer of 1903, and the Smith family eagerly anticipates the opening of the 1904 World’s Fair. Over the course of a year, the family’s mutual respect, tempered with good-natured humor, helps them through romance, opportunity, and heartbreaks. The musical includes seven of the best-loved songs from the film, plus ten additional Martin and Blane songs written specially for the stage. Memorable musical numbers include “Have Yourself a Merry Little Christmas,” “The Boy Next Door,” “The Trolley Song,” and “Whenever I’m with You.”

The Mystery of Edwin Drood (Broadway Revival Version) by Rupert Holmes
(Comedy / 4f, 7m)
Based on Charles Dickens’ final unfinished novel, this hilarious whodunit invites the audience to solve its mystery by choosing the identity of the murderer. The tale is presented as a show-within-a-show, as the Music Hall Royale – a delightfully loony Victorian theatre company – presents Dickens’ brooding mystery. Musical numbers include “Perfect Strangers,” “Don’t Quit While You’re Ahead,” “Off To The Races” and “Moonfall.”

Nice Work If You Can Get It by George Gershwin, Ira Gershwin, Joe DiPietro, Guy Bolton & P.G. Wodehouse
(Comedy / 5f, 5m)
A hilarious new screwball comedy, Nice Work If You Can Get It pokes fun at the Prohibition era in a clash of elegant socialites and boorish bootleggers, all set to the glorious songs of George and Ira Gershwin. Highlights from the score include “Fascinating Rhythm,” “Let’s Call The Whole Thing Off,” “Someone To Watch Over Me,” “Delishious” and the title song.

No, No, Nanette by Otto Harbach, Frank Mandel, Vincent Youmans & Irving Caesar
(Comedy / 7f, 3m)
No, No, Nanette is a lighthearted romp showcasing the charming music of Vincent Youmans. The wacky story involves three couples sharing a cottage in Atlantic City in the midst of a blackmail scheme, with plenty of deception, romantic mishaps, and comical misunderstandings. The score includes two of the best-known songs in musical theatre – “Tea for Two” and “I Want to Be Happy” – as well as gems like “You Can Dance With Any Girl” and “Take a Little One-Step.”

Once Upon a Mattress by Mary Rodgers, Jay Thompson, Dean Fuller & Marshall Barer
(Comedy / 4f, 7m)
Winnifred the Woebegone is just a simple swamp princess looking to win the heart of Prince Dauntless. But can she pass the impossible test Queen Aggravain has in store for her? Carried on a wave of wonderful songs, by turns hilarious and raucous, romantic and melodic, this rollicking spin on the classic tale The Princess and the Pea provides some side-splitting shenanigans. And, like all great escapist musicals, it somehow works out in the end. After all, a princess is a delicate thing.

The Sound of Music by Richard Rodgers, Oscar Hammerstein II, Howard Lindsay, Russel Crouse, based on the memoir by Maria Augusta Trapp
(Dramatic Comedy / 7f, 4m, 5 girls, 2 boys)
One of the most beloved musicals of all time! The tuneful tale of Maria Von Trapp is certainly one of the greatest works of escapist entertainment ever created. Featuring a trove of cherished songs, including “Climb Ev’ry Mountain,” “My Favorite Things,” “Do Re Mi,” “Sixteeen Going on Seventeen” and the title number, The Sound of Music will whisk you away to a magical world of love, joy, kindness and decency.

Starmites by Barry Keating & Stuart Ross
(Comedy / 6f, 5m + Ensemble)
Starmites Pro is a crowd-pleasing family musical that can be produced with a cast of 11 and an ensemble of 5. It is a Sci-fi Fantasy show with a big heart and big laughs. Designed to be performed with imagination and wit—rather than with huge sets and special effects, Starmites has been recently been carefully and lovingly “upgraded” by authors
Barry Keating and Stuart Ross (Forever Plaid). When shy teenager Eleanor is mysteriously thrust into the Website World of her favorite comic book, she is drawn into the conflict between Shak Graa, Arch-Creep of Chaos, and the Starmites, guardian angels of Innerspace. Eleanor leads the Mites on their Quest to save the Galaxy, owning up to the inner power she has always denied, defeating her foes and conquering the evil force of the “Cruelty.”

Twelfth Night by Kwame Kwei-Armah & Shaina Taub
(Comedy / 4f, 7m)
Named one of the best theatrical productions of 2018 by Time, The Hollywood Reporter and The Washington Post, Twelfth Night is a rousing contemporary musical adaptation of Shakespeare’s classic romantic comedy about mistaken identity and self-discovery. Twelfth Night tells the story of Viola, a young heroine who washes up on the shores of Illyria, disguises herself as a man, is sent to court a countess and falls hard for a Duke. As she navigates this strange and wonderful new land, she finds her true self and true love in the process. Featuring an original jazz-funk score by Shaina Taub, with a flexible-sized cast and running 90 minutes long, Twelfth Night is appropriate for all audiences and groups.

The Wiz by William F. Brown, Charlie Smalls
(Comedy / 5f, 6m, 4m or f)
A beloved Broadway gem, The Wiz infuses L. Frank Baum’s The Wonderful Wizard of Oz with a dazzling mix of rock, gospel, and soul music. This timeless tale of Dorothy’s adventures through the Land of Oz is a fun, family-friendly, modern musical and one of the most popular shows in the Concord Theatricals catalog.

The World According to Snoopy by Charles M. Schulz, Warren Lockhart, Arthur Whitelaw, Michael L. Grace, Larry Grossman, Hal Hackady, Andrew Lippa, Kaitlin Hopkins & Adam Cates
(Comedy / 3f, 3m, 1 any gender)
Based on the beloved Peanuts comic strip by Charles M. Schulz, The World According to Snoopy sparkles with wit and warmth as it depicts life as seen through the eyes of Schulz’s unforgettable characters. This updated musical, adapted at Texas State University in 2017, features a brand new song (“Husband Material”) with music by Larry Grossman and lyrics by Andrew Lippa, composer/lyricist of the additional material in You’re A Good Man, Charlie Brown (Revised).

You’re a Good Man, Charlie Brown (Revised) by Charles M. Schulz, Clark Gesner, Michael Mayer & Andrew Lippa
(Comedy / 2f, 4m)
Happiness is great musical theatre! With charm, wit, and heart, You’re A Good Man, Charlie Brown explores life through the eyes of Charlie Brown and his friends in the Peanuts gang. This revue of songs and vignettes, based on the beloved Charles Schulz comic strip, is the ideal first show for those who would like to do a musical. Musical numbers include “My Blanket and Me,” “The Kite,” “The Baseball Game,” “Little Known Facts,” “Suppertime,” and “Happiness.” Guaranteed to please audiences of all ages!

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Header Image: 2017 Broadway revival of Hello, Dolly! (Julieta Cervantes)