Guides for Musicals, Plays, Operas & Operettas

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

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Chitty Chitty Bang Bang

Chitty Chitty Bang Bang is the story of a an eccentric inventor named Caractacus Potts who, with the help of his children Jeremy and Jemima, sets about restoring an old race car from a scrap heap. Soon, they discover the car has magical properties including the ability to float and take flight.... read more

The Drowsy Chaperone

When wealthy widow Mrs. Tottenham hosts the wedding of the year, she gets a lot more than a write-up in the society pages: Janet Van de Graaff, glittering starlet of Feldzieg’s Follies, is leaving the stage for love, a turn of events which horrifies the angry and anxious Mr. Feldzieg, whose chief... read more

Something Rotten

Welcome to the Renaissance, where the Black Plague has ceded power to the Puritans, farthingales and codpieces are the latest fashion trend, and the biggest celebrity in England is a playwright named William Shakespeare. In the midst of all this excitement, brothers Nick and Nigel Bottom are tryi... read more

Ragtime

Based on the novel of the same name by E.L. Doctrow, Ahren’s and Flaherty’s Ragtime is a compelling epic capturing the American experience at the turn of the 20th century. Tracking three diverse families in pursuit of the American dream in the volatile “melting pot” of turn-of-the-century New Yo... read more

The Wiz

The Wiz: The Super Soul Musical “Wonderful Wizard of Oz” is a joyous modern retelling of L. Frank Baum’s classic children’s story reflecting contemporary African-American culture. After Dorothy gets swept up in a tornado, she finds herself in the fantastical world of Oz. There, she makes new frie... read more

Hair

Hair: The American Tribal Love-Rock Musical follows a young group of hippies fighting the establishment, dodging the drafts, getting high, living and loving in New York City. It’s 1967: the Vietnam War raging and the Age of Aquarius is dawning. Claude, his best friend Berger, their roommate Sheil... read more

A Streetcar Named Desire

Explosive, passionate, and heartrending, A Streetcar Named Desire is modern American theatre at its best. When fading Southern belle Blanche DuBois arrives on the doorstep of her sister Stella’s apartment building in New Orleans, she is unwittingly entering a lion’s den. Wounded by romantic abuse... read more

Twelfth Night

Often lauded as one of the most structurally perfect comedies ever written and beloved by audiences for generations, Twelfth Night; or, What You Will is a masterpiece. Shipwrecked on the shores of the strange land, Illyria, Viola believes herself alone in the world and her twin brother drowned.... read more

Carousel

Richard Rodgers once wrote that of all the musicals he wrote, Carousel was his personal favorite. This iconic American classic features some of the most powerful music ever written for the stage, including “If I Loved You”, “Mister Snow”, “June is Bustin Out All Over” and the iconic “You’ll Neve... read more

Parade

Parade tells the heart-wrenching, true story of Leo Frank: a Brooklyn-raised Jewish man living in Atlanta who was wrongfully convicted of the rape and murder of his thirteen-year-old employee, Mary Phagan, in 1913. Because Frank’s trial was replete with faulty testimony and lacked any clear evide... read more