Broadway shows appeal to many different types of people and age groups. Their plots, characters, and settings have become more intricate to fit society today, so here are the top five best broadway shows to listen to.
5. My favorite Broadway show will always be “Hamilton: an American Musical.” “Hamilton” is “the story of America then told by America now,” according to its playwright, ex-star and creator Lin-Manuel Miranda.
A hip-hop-and-rap style show about Alexander Hamilton, “Hamilton” tells the story of the Caribbean-orphan on the 10-dollar bill and how he became the political activist we know him as now.
The first act focuses on the Revolutionary War, with Hamilton under the wing of General George Washington and working alongside his rival Aaron Burr. He also meets his future wife in the first act, a relationship that gets ruined in the second act.
The second act is much more personal; Hamilton gets involved with a scandal involving his wife and the government’s money, and he loses his connections with Thomas Jefferson and James Madison.
Manuel brilliantly rhymes and creates his own lyrics; people get so emotionally attached to the characters, especially when they are living in the age of wars and duels for honor. With 11 Tony Awards and a record-breaking 16 nominations, “Hamilton” is at the top of the Broadway world.
Freshman Victoria Rocha said, “The best part of musical theater is the story they can tell every night. With amazing settings and relatable characters, they can either blast you into the past, like Hamilton, or put you into a new experience.”
4. Our next show is “Dear Evan Hansen.”
Everyone needs to hear “Dear Evan Hansen” about Evan, an anxiety-ridden teen going back to school in the fall after a suicide attempt. He meets Connor Murphy, a drug-addict and the older brother of Evan’s crush, Zoe Murphy.
Evan therapeutically writes letters to himself to cope with his mental state. After Connor commits suicide, the family finds one of Evan’s notes in his pocket, thinking Connor wrote the letter to Evan. They assume that Evan and Connor were best friends while he was alive, and Evan lies to the family and social media, starting a campaign for teens like Connor.
The melodies and vocals blend together wonderfully. Ben Platt’s (Evan Hansen) beautiful riffs and ranges are so bone-chilling, along with a beautiful and relatable story.
3. Another musical that exhibits similar themes is “Heathers.” Based off of the movie starring Winona Rider, “Heathers” revolves around an angst-filled main character named Veronica who, similar to Evan, writes journal entries.
It starts off in a typical high school setting in Hollywood — the Heathers are the three most popular girls in school, all named Heather. Veronica and her nerdy best friend Betty Finn both desire to be like them, but the Heathers invite Veronica to be a part of their clique.
While being a Heather, she meets Jason Dean, better known as J.D., and they immediately hit it off — until she realizes he has major sociopathic tendencies and has a creepily protective love of her.
When they accidentally poison one of the Heathers, causing her death, they try to cover it up by forging a suicide note, but this leads to more murder and mayhem.
Freshman Anamika Rao said, “The characters are so complex — just from the premise, it seems like a stereotypical American movie, but the darker messages in the musical are what really sealed the deal.”
2. Next on the list is another musical with a “not-as-it-seems” storyline — “Be More Chill.”
The main character, Jeremy, has longed to move up on the social ladder with his best friend, Michael. He gets his shot when one of the biggest school bullies offers him a pill that infuses his brain, controlling his mind to “be more chill.”
The Super Quantum Unit Intel Processor, or SQUIP as the computer is called, has such an amazing character concept with such a flair and passion for disaster. The show has tear-jerking moments from crying over the breaking friendship of Michael and Jeremy to bursting out laughing at the shenanigans the SQUIP gets Jeremy into.
The relationships built during the show are so prevalent, and it is amazing how the actors portray these emotions every night.
1. Another musical that does that very well is “Natasha, Pierre, and the Great Comet of 1812.” Just like ‘Hamilton,” it is based on historical events — specifically Russia during the book “War and Peace.”
It amazingly threads a war into the lives of rich and snobby Russian aristocrats. The vibratos of even the most disliked characters make one even more engaged and sitting on the edge of one’s seat, thinking, “How are they going to get out of that one?”
The use of instruments such as the violin and cello, prominent musical instruments during that Russian time period, and the costume design make the viewer feel as though they really are sitting alongside Natasha and Pierre during the War of 1812.
That is the best thing about musicals. Just as books and movies might bring one into another world with intricate storylines and believable characters, musicals do the same with different genres of music.
Which musical would you want to see?