Guides for Musicals, Plays, Operas & Operettas

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

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Amahl and the Night Visitors

Based on Italian folk tales of the Nativity and Epiphany, Gian Carlo Menotti’s Amahl and the Night Visitors is a retelling of the story of the Magi from the point of view of a young disabled boy named Amahl, who lives in poverty with his widowed mother near Bethlehem. He sees a bright star in th... read more

Amour

In post World War II Paris Dusoleil is an ordinary civil servant. His lazy co-workers are unhappy because Dusoleil is a hard worker who finishes his work early. To pass the time, he writes letters to his mother and daydreams about the beautiful Isabelle. Suddenly, he discovers that he has the p... read more

Angels in America, Part Two: Perestroika

Perestroika follows on chronologically and plot-wise from Millennium Approaches. It is a complex play that provides a symbolic and fantastical examination of homosexuality, race, and AIDS in 1980s America. The play is made up of eight main characters, all of whom play several other minor characte... read more

The Audience

The Audience takes place between 1952 and the present day. It focuses on Queen Elizabeth II’s private weekly meetings between her and each of her Prime Minister’s throughout her reign. These meetings have never been recorded and their content is unknown. In this innovative, modern play, Peter Mor... read more

The Beggar's Opera

Peachum, a thief catcher, deplores the fact that his daughter Polly is marrying the famous highwayman, Macheath. He arranges for Macheath to be arrested and imprisoned at the prison run by the corrupt wardon, Lockit. Macheath tries to escape by enlisted the help of Lockit's daughter Lucy and pr... read more

Blood Wedding

A bride and groom are getting married. A man who used to be in love with the Bride, Leonardo Felix, comes to her window every night. His marriage is unhappy, and he still longs for her. One night, Leonardo confesses his love to her. She tries to stop him, but she loves him back. However, she... read more

Bright Star

Bright Star is the story of one woman at two different points in her life: the first, when she is a wild young thing growing up barefoot and carefree in the Blue Ridge Mountains of North Carolina; the second, when she is a well-to-do magazine editor in Asheville, 22 years later. Her story is inev... read more

A Connecticut Yankee

Martin is about to get married to Fay Morgan but is knocked in the head when she sees him talking to his former fiancée, Alice. While he is knocked out he dreams of being in the court of King Arthur and gaining immense wealth and prestige by industrializing the realm. During the dream he... read more

Das Rheingold

Das Rheingold is the first of the four operas that comprise Richard Wagner's "Der Ring des Nibelungen" . Wotan, Lord of the Gods, sacrificed an eye to obtain the spear with which he rules the world. Now he has contracted the giants, Fasolt and Fafner, to build him a stronghold. Their payment is... read more

Do I Hear A Waltz?

After years of struggling as a poor New York secretary, Leona Samish has finally begun her dream vacation to Venice, Italy. While in Italy, she stays at the Pensione Fioria, run by the flirtatious Signora Fioria. At the Pensione, she meets two couples, the Yeagers and the McIlhennies. While the M... read more