Guides for Musicals, Plays, Operas & Operettas

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


Bridges of Madison County

Francesca is a dedicated, Iowan housewife, living a simple, yet dispassionate, life. Everything changes when her family goes on a trip to the State Fair in Indianapolis, leaving Francesca behind to take care of the house. Francesca is taken aback by a handsome National Geographic photographer nam... read more

Bloody Bloody Andrew Jackson

Bloody Bloody Andrew Jackson is an irreverent, exhilarating, hilarious romp through American history, following our nation’s first rock star president, Andrew Jackson. Mirroring the current populist landscape, we trace Jackson’s life from rural, impoverished Tennessee upbringing, to early success... read more


Set in 1964 in the Deep South during the early days of the Civil Rights Movement, Violet follows the growth and enlightenment of a bitter young disfigured woman. In hopes that a TV evangelist can cure her, she embarks on a journey by bus from her sleepy North Carolina town to Tulsa, Oklahoma. Alo... read more


Curtains is parody of 1950s "whodunnit" theater mysteries, where a lone detective, Lieutenant Frank Cioffi, investigates a series of murders that take place place behind the scenes of a fictional 1950s cowboy musical, Robbin' Hood. The cast of Robbin' Hood is forced to stay inside the theater whi... read more


In 1988, Neil Simon needed to cheer himself up. The solution was a farce in two acts, set in Palisades, that shows a dinner party gone topsy-turvy. An enjoyable romp that has been staged countless times all over the country, this is one of Simon's most celebrated comedies. But it carries a subtle... read more


Barnum tells the story of the Prince of Humbug, Phineas Taylor Barnum. Over the objections of his wife, Charity, Barnum attempts to create a show in which the main attractions are freaks of society. Included in this mix of characters includes the oldest women alive, Joice Heth, the smallest man i... read more

Aida (Opera)

A tragic tale of forbidden love, Aida follows the struggle of the Ethiopian princess, Aida, and the young Egyptian warrior, Radamès, to decide between love or loyalty to their countries. Aida has been captured by the Egyptians, who do not know her true identity, and is being held as a slave. She... read more


Based on Voltaire’s 1759 novella of the same name, Candide takes the audience on a round-the-world romp of idealistic optimism as it clashes with a series of absurdly unfortunate events. The young and naïve title character is betrothed to the Baron of Westphalia’s beautiful daughter Cunegonde, a... read more

Sherlock Holmes: The Final Adventure

A reinterpretation of Sherlock Holmes’ last great story, involving his arch nemesis, Professor Moriarty. The King of Bohemia is blackmailed, and the opera singer, Irene Adler, may be one of the suspects. Somehow, Moriarty and his henchman, one of whom is Adler’s husband another of whom is her mai... read more


Dr. Martin Dysart, a dissatisfied and disaffected psychiatrist, is faced with a unique case when a young man, Alan Strang, is brought to him for treatment. Alan, a passionate and obsessive horse lover, has blinded six horses, to the horror and surprise of his family. In his efforts to coax Alan o... read more