Guides for Musicals, Plays, Operas & Operettas

Read expert-written show guides with context, plot, characters and video examples.

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Rock of Ages

It is 1987, and the fabled West Hollywood club the Bourbon Room is the seedy, sordid, vibrant heart of the Sunset Strip. The music venue has seen better days, but as run by chilled-out former rock impresario Dennis Dupree, and tended to by Dennis’s mischievous assistant Lonny, it is the essence o... read more

Wicked

Stephen Schwartz’s Wicked: The Untold Story of the Witches of Oz takes place before L.Frank Baum’s classic Wizard of Oz story ever began. Before Dorothy was even alive, two young girls met in the Land of Oz, became rivals, and then friends. One was born with emerald green skin, with a brillian... read more

Les Misérables

One of the world’s most iconic and longest-running musicals, Les Misérables tells the story of Jean Valjean, a former convict who spends a lifetime seeking redemption. Set against the backdrop of 19th-century France and the aftermath of the French Revolution, this timeless story of intertwined d... read more

Phantom of the Opera

Based on the 1910 horror novel by Gaston Leroux, The Phantom of the Opera is a thrilling and romantic account of the legendary Phantom, a musical genius who dwells deep beneath a majestic opera house in Paris. Shunned by society for his horrible facial deformity, he takes a promising young sopran... read more

Into the Woods

“Be careful what you wish for” seems to be the ongoing theme in Stephen Sondheim and James Lapine’s Brothers Grimm inspired musical, Into the Woods. The story follows The Baker and his wife who wish to have a child, Cinderella who wishes to go the King’s Festival, and Jack who wishes his cow woul... read more

Beauty and the Beast

Based on the smash hit 1991 Disney movie and dating back to a late 18th-century classic French fairy tale, Beauty and the Beast tells the story of Belle, a beautiful and intelligent young woman who feels out of place in her provincial French village. When her father is imprisoned in a mysterious... read more

Rent

Based on Puccini’s beloved opera La Bohème, Rent follows the ups and downs of a year in the life of a group of impoverished, artistic friends living in Manhattan’s East Village. Mark, an aspiring filmmaker, struggles to find his place in the world; his roommate Roger, an HIV-positive musician, w... read more

Hairspray

It’s 1962 in Baltimore, Maryland, and quirky, plus-sized, teenage Tracy Turnblad has one dream: to dance on The Corny Collins Show. When she gets put in detention with the African-American students in the school, they teach her some of their dance moves, and her new found groove wins her a spot o... read more

Grease

It’s 1959, and Rydell High School’s senior class is in rare form. The too-cool-for-school “Burger Palace Boys” are stealing hub-caps and acting tough and their gum-snapping, chain-smoking “Pink Ladies” are looking hot in bobby sox and pedal pushers. The 1950s high school dream is about to explo... read more

The Lion King

The show starts with the kind and wise Lion King of the Pridelands, Mufasa, and his queen Sarabi introducing their newborn son, Simba to the animals of the savanna. All seems well except Mufasa's evil brother, Scar, secretly desires to be king. Along with his evil henchmen, the hyenas, Scar orche... read more