Award winning musicals that haven't been seen in the UK (yet)
When will we be treated to these shows?
Yesterday we covered the National's revelation that it will be staging a musical a year going forward – so here are ten that it could import if it needed to.
Obviously we have a load of home grown musicals that should definitely be supported from script to stage - you can check out some we've covered recently here.
Next to Normal
It is almost impossible to understand why this Pulitzer Prize-winning musical, nominated for 11 Tony Awards, hasn't been seen in the UK. Since opening in 2008 it's been seen across the world and wowed audiences with its realistic, educated and thorough depiction of the nature of mental illness in the present day. We're sure it's only a matter of time until it's given a premiere somewhere, and until now we have a cracking cast recording to keep us going, featuring the dreamy voice of Aaron Tveit.
A Gentleman's Guide to Love & Murder
The musical comedy won four Tony Awards at the 68th Tony Awards in June 2014, including Best Musical. All about a group of aristocrats at the start of the 20th century, it would probably be the right sort of rib-tickling comedy we all need right now.
A Strange Loop
Okay, hear us out on this – it might not have opened on Broadway just yet (or even announced plans...but we expect it will do!) but the Pulitzer Prize-winning piece is an absolute storm of a show (you can listen to the cast recording now) that explores the life of a queer black writer working front of house at The Lion King.
Tim Rice has been on a one-man mission during the pandemic to hype up Aida's imminent London arrival and, quite frankly, it couldn't come fast enough. Why wouldn't we want more Rice / Elton John team-ups?
You can seize the day whenever you like on Disney Plus, but it's hard to believe that Newsies has never been professionally staged in the UK – with music by Disney legend Alan Menken, lyrics by Jack Feldman, and a book by Harvey Fierstein, this show about the Newsboys Strike of 1899 won two Tony Awards in 2012. There's still no sign of this show making front page news any time soon.
Ain't Too Proud
It's not just our imagination – this show would really go down a storm in the UK. It picked up the Best Choreography Tony Award and, since we'd all love a bit of The Temptations in our lives, there hardly seem like any reasons to keep the jukebox show away from these shores!
Natasha, Pierre and the Great Comet of 1812
Dave Malloy's show, a musical adaptation of Tolstoy's War and Peace, has been knocking around for a while so it's hardly a spring chicken. It bagged the Smithsonian Ingenuity award and wowed on Broadway.
The Cher Show
The Cher Show was described by one critic as a 'maddening mishmash' but by one of our Broadway moles as an undeniably enjoyable hot mess (with some Tony Award-winning costumes). And it's probably true that if you're a Cher fan, you'll be a fan of this madcap jukebox musical. It has now closed in New York and we can only "believe" we'll see it here soon.
Of Thee I Sing
Of Thee I Sing is interestingly one (and the first!) of only ten musicals to win a Pulitzer Prize – you can have an extra cookie if you can guess the rest. With a score by George Gershwin, lyrics by Ira Gershwin and a book by George S Kaufman and Morrie Ryskind, it may need something of a revamp but, with a story about a charlatan getting into the White House, it could feel apt.
The Band's Visit
This show, based on the Israeli film of the same name, has an extraordinary premise. It's the tale of what happens when a police orchestra accidentally gets sent to an isolated desert town, as opposed to the city of Petah Tikvah. It cleaned up at the Tony Awards in 2017, winning ten including Best Musical. We think it's unfair of Broadway to keep hold of it!