22 Must-See Broadway Shows in NYC

Step into the dazzling world of New York City’s iconic Broadway shows, where the lights shimmer, the acting is phenomenal, and the music is world-class.

Broadway musical Hamilton - Broadway, New York, USA

Whether you’re a theater aficionado or a first-time visitor, the magic of Broadway is an experience like no other. We’ve handpicked a must-see Broadway shows that will leave you spellbound on your next visit to NYC.

For an authentic NYC experience, include a Broadway show from our top picks in your itinerary to immerse yourself in the city’s renowned theater culture.

1. Hamilton on Broadway

If you’re looking for a historical, thrilling, and unforgettable Broadway experience, Hamilton is the show for you.

This innovative musical by Lin-Manuel Miranda combines Alexander Hamilton’s story with a mix of hip-hop, jazz, blues, rap, R&B, and Broadway styles.

Many reviewers have raved about its unique approach to history, with one saying, “All its radicalism comes wrapped in fantastically infectious songs, stirringly delivered, and the lack of book is no hindrance to the complications in its plot.”

Hamilton continues to show at the Richard Rodgers Theatre in New York City. This theater has been its home since it opened on Broadway.

Hamilton officially opened on Broadway on July 13th, 2015. As of early 2024, it has been running for over eight years, showcasing its enduring popularity and critical acclaim.

2. Wicked on Broadway

Wicked on Broadway has been enchanting audiences since its debut in 2003. This musical is based on the 1995 novel by Gregory Maguire.

The show weaves a magical tale about the friendship between two young sorcery students, Elphaba and Glinda, who become the Wicked Witch of the West and Glinda the Good Witch, respectively.

As the show has captivated audiences for years, it has also garnered great reviews. One review states, “It has eye-popping costumes and a rich, visual setting.”

Located at the Gershwin Theatre in New York, which is the largest theater on Broadway, Wicked offers a grand and immersive experience.

The show runs for approximately 2 hours and 45 minutes, including one intermission. It’s recommended for audiences aged 5 and up.

Despite mixed reviews upon its premiere on October 8th, 2003, “Wicked” has become a beloved classic and the fourth-longest-running Broadway show of all time.

3. The Lion King

The Lion King is a beloved musical that has captivated audiences for decades. Based on the Disney animated film of the same name.

This show immerses you in the African savannah, where a young cub named Simba learns about love, power, and responsibility.

The story follows Simba on his gripping hero’s journey, providing a rich tapestry of stunning visuals, inspiring music, and memorable characters.

One theatergoer describes it as “The Lion King is still a timeless piece of artistry and magical allure.” praising its breathtaking costumes, set designs, and captivating performances.

The Lion King is playing at the Minskoff Theatre in New York City. The show originally premiered on October 15th, 1997, and has been going strong ever since, making it one of the longest-running Broadway shows in history.

4. Moulin Rouge

Moulin Rouge! The Musical is a spectacular adaptation of Baz Luhrmann’s revolutionary film.

Set in the vibrant and romantic world of Montmartre, Paris, you’ll be transported to the iconic cabaret club where love, passion, and excitement await.

The show features a phenomenal cast, stunning set designs, and a unique musical mash-up of pop hits that breathe new life into this timeless story.

Audiences have been raving about the show, with one review stating, “The show is a lot, in every sense, both intoxicating and exhausting in its unrelenting visual and sonic assault. But it virtually defies you not to be entertained..”

Currently playing at the Al Hirschfeld Theatre in New York City, the show has been dazzling audiences and selling out performances since its Broadway debut on June 28th, 2019.

With a runtime of approximately 2 hours and 45 minutes, including intermission, the experience is exhilarating and unforgettable.

5. Chicago

Chicago is a must-watch Broadway musical for fans, set in the 1920s, revolving around two death row inmates, Roxie Hart and Velma Kelly, vying for public sympathy to escape their fates.

With an alluring mix of seductive Fosse-style choreography and an iconic jazz score, Chicago has captivated audiences for decades.

One enthusiastic reviewer describes Chicago as a “living, breathing piece of musical theatre history, which rightfully remains at the Ambassador Theatre”, with performances that are full of energy and executed with precision.

You can catch Chicago at the Ambassador Theatre in New York City, where it has been delighting audiences since its revival on October 23rd, 1996.

The production has become a true Broadway staple, making it one of the longest-running shows in the history of the Great White Way.

6. The Book of Mormon

The Book of Mormon is a hilarious and witty musical that guarantees lots of laughs throughout the show.

The story revolves around two young Mormon missionaries in Uganda who face challenges and cultural differences, testing their beliefs and worldview.

One satisfied audience member has described the show as “This show makes you realize that when you are pointing one finger to make fun of someone, there are three fingers pointed back at you”

The musical has been a hit since its Broadway premiere on February 24th, 2011. It has been playing at the Eugene O’Neill Theatre in New York’s Theatre District.

Trey Parker and Matt Stone, creators of “South Park,” collaborated with “Avenue Q” composer Robert Lopez to produce a humorous and insightful theater show.

The Book of Mormon runs for approximately 2 hours and 30 minutes, including a brief intermission.

7. Hadestown

Hadestown is a captivating musical that tells the story of the ancient Greek myth of Orpheus and Eurydice.

In this tale, the two lovers struggle to make a living, and Eurydice becomes intrigued by Hades’ underground factory, eventually getting lured into Hadestown.

When you watch this Broadway sensation, you’ll be immersed in a haunting and hopeful theatrical experience that grabs your attention and never lets go.

One critic describes Hadestown as “Great acting, Great singing, Enchanting, Entertaining, Absorbing.”

The musical “Hadestown” is playing at Walter Kerr Theatre, 219 W 48th St, between Broadway and 8th Ave. It has been enthralling audiences since its debut on March 22nd, 2019, and continues to receive outstanding reviews.

With a running time of 2 hours and 30 minutes, including a 15-minute intermission, it’s the perfect length for an engaging afternoon or evening of entertainment.

8. Aladdin

If you’re looking for a magical Broadway experience, look no further than Disney’s Aladdin.

This musical, adapted from the classic Disney film, tells the story of a young man and a magical lamp with a genie who grants three wishes.

The show is an exciting extravaganza that includes spectacular sets and costumes, dazzling dance numbers, and memorable songs like “Friend Like Me,” “A Whole New World,” and “Prince Ali.”

One audience says it’s “The costumes and sets are wonderfully bright and make the production the most vibrantly colorful of all Disney Theatrical’s offerings to date” as it beautifully unfolds on stage, full of enchantment, romance, and adventure.

Aladdin has been on Broadway since February 26th, 2014, making it a beloved staple in the theater scene. The musical is currently playing at the New Amsterdam Theatre in New York City.

With a running time of approximately 2 hours and 30 minutes, with one intermission.

9. Six Broadway

As you explore the world of Broadway, you can’t miss the musical sensation, Six.

Six is a modern retelling of the lives of Henry VIII’s six wives, turning their stories into empowering and catchy pop anthems.

The show breathes new life into history, combining the drama of the Tudor period with the energy of contemporary pop culture.

Audiences have been crazy about Six since its debut. One reviewer describes it as “Six is unique in more than one way.”

Six is currently performed at the Lena Horne Theatre at 256 West 47th Street, nestled in the heart of New York’s Theater District. It has been captivating audiences since February 13th, 2020, with no signs of slowing down anytime soon.

10. MJ The Musical

MJ The Musical is a captivating show that brings the life and career of the legendary Michael Jackson to the Broadway stage.

It explores his world with over 25 of his greatest hits and iconic performances, transporting you back to key events of his era and deepening your understanding of the artist.

One review described it as “Cleverly conceived and thrillingly performed” and highlights the unforgettable experience you’re in for when attending this musical.

You can find MJ The Musical at New York City’s Neil Simon Theatre on 250 West 52nd Street, nestled right between 7th Avenue and 8th Avenue in the bustling Theater District.

MJ The Musical has an up-to-date schedule of performances running from December 6th, 2021.

The show lasts for approximately 2 hours and 30 minutes, including one intermission, and is recommended for children ages 8 and up.

11. Harry Potter and the Cursed Child

Are you a fan of the magical world of Harry Potter? If so, you won’t want to miss the spectacular Broadway production of Harry Potter and the Cursed Child.

This spellbinding play is currently showing at the Lyric Theatre on Broadway in New York City.

The captivating story revolves around the beloved characters from J.K. Rowling’s Wizarding World as grown-ups, including Harry, Hermione, and Ron.

But the spotlight shines on their children, primarily Harry’s son, Albus Severus Potter, as they embark on an enchanting and dangerous adventure.

Harry Potter and the Cursed Child has been enthralling audiences since its premiere on March 16th, 2018 with a running time of 3h 30m including intermission.

This seamless blend of enchanting storytelling, mesmerizing stagecraft, and magical special effects will leave you spellbound. And it seems like critics agree—The New York Times reviewed the revamped Broadway production as “still magical.”

12. A Beautiful Noise

A Beautiful Noise is an uplifting new Broadway musical that captures the extraordinary life and times of legendary rock icon, Neil Diamond.

As you step into the enchanting world of this musical, you’ll experience the captivating journey of Neil’s early days in New York City, culminating in the unforgettable spectacle that defined his stellar career.

The wonderfully crafted storyline is complemented by the powerful and inspiring melodies of Diamond’s hit songs.

One review noted, “A Beautiful Noise” is victorious, but not without a few rough bumps along the way — much like the trajectory of Diamond’s life.”

The musical is currently playing at the Broadhurst Theatre on Broadway. It has been delighting audiences since November 2, 2022. The run time is 2hours 15minutes including intermission.

13. Little Shop of Horrors

Step into the world of Little Shop of Horrors, a cult classic musical that has been charming audiences with its dazzling storytelling and catchy tunes.

The show follows the story of Seymour, a timid plant store attendant, his crush Audrey, and their encounter with an insatiable, man-eating plant.

The New York Times Critic’s Pick praises this revival as a “wildly exuberant” production.

You can catch Little Shop of Horrors at the Westside Theatre. This off-Broadway production has been running since fall 2019, with a rotating star-studded cast that keeps the show fresh and engaging.

The show lasts approximately 2 hours and 15 minutes, with a 15-minute intermission. It’s recommended for ages 5 and up.

14. The Play That Goes Wrong

If you’re a fan of comedy, you should definitely catch The Play That Goes Wrong.

This hilarious show tells the story of the Cornley Polytechnic Drama Society, a rather accident-prone and unlucky crew attempting to put on a 1920s murder mystery.

As you might expect, everything that could go wrong does go wrong, leading to non-stop laughter and enjoyment throughout the performance.

One reviewer described it as, “The funniest play Broadway has ever seen!” – The Huffington Post. You’ll no doubt be enchanted by the fantastic acting and witty humor.

The Play That Goes Wrong is currently showing at the New World Stages. It has been delighting audiences since its premiere on February 11th, 2019.

15. How to Dance in Ohio

Welcome to the intriguing world of “How to Dance in Ohio“! This Broadway show has captured the hearts of viewers with its unique storyline and mesmerizing performances.

The musical is set in a Columbus-based counseling center and follows seven young adults on the autism spectrum as they gear up for a spring formal dance.

Their journey breaks open their routines and sets off hilarious and heartbreaking encounters with love, stress, excitement, and independence.

Audience reviews have praised the show as “What makes How to Dance in Ohio a unique and unprecedented production.”

The captivating show began its run on November 15th, 2023, and is currently staged at the historic Belasco Theatre located at 111 W 44th Street, New York, NY 10036, between 6th and 7th Avenues.

You can expect a show time of approximately 2 hours and 20 minutes, including a 15-minute intermission.

16. Harmony: A New Musical

If you’re searching for an intriguing and compelling Broadway show to see in New York City, look no further than Harmony: A New Musical.

Set in the 1920s, this production recounts the true tale of the Comedian Harmonists, a group of six gifted Jewish and Gentile men whose refined harmonies and humorous stage acts gained worldwide fame.

Critics have praised Harmony, with Entertainment Weekly describing it as “powerful, moving and more resonant than ever.”

The show is currently playing at the Ethel Barrymore Theatre located at 243 W 47th St, New York, NY.

This captivating musical, created by the talented duo of Barry Manilow and Bruce Sussman, arrived on Broadway in November 8th, 2023. It runs 2h 30m including intermission.

17. Gazillion Bubble Show

If you’re looking for a unique, family-friendly Broadway experience, look no further than the Gazillion Bubble Show.

This dazzling off-Broadway spectacle is perfect for audience members of all ages, captivating your imagination and sense of wonder with its colorful and intricate displays of bubble artistry.

One reviewer describes the show as a mind-blowing, bubble extravaganza.

The Gazillion Bubble Show is being performed at the New World Stages in New York City. It runs for approximately 60 minutes, without an intermission. It has been pleasing audiences since its premiere on November 5th, 2021.

18. & Juliet on Broadway

Visiting New York City? Make sure you catch the hit musical & Juliet during your trip! This innovative and hilarious show takes a new spin on Shakespeare’s classic tale of “Romeo and Juliet.”

In this revised and more upbeat version, Juliet doesn’t end her life over Romeo. Instead, she embarks on a journey of self-discovery and empowerment.

One review rant about the show’s energy and charm, saying, “a great deal of their time belting ballads of empowerment.”

You can catch & Juliet on Broadway at the Stephen Sondheim Theatre. This must-see musical has been running in October 28th, 2022, with a run time of 2 hours 30 minutes including intermission.

19. Sweeney Todd on Broadway

New York City’s Broadway is home to many fantastic productions, and one thrilling show you should consider seeing is Sweeney Todd.

The plot revolves around Sweeney Todd, a man wronged by the corrupt Judge Turpin, who returns to London seeking revenge.

He meets Mrs. Lovett, a pie shop owner, and they start a darkly humorous, gripping revenge quest. Sondheim’s score adds to the show’s intense allure.

One reviewer described the current production, starring Josh Groban and Annaleigh Ashford, as “a chilling masterpiece with the perfect balance of horror and humor.”

This highly-praised production is currently showing at the Lunt-Fontanne Theatre, a prestigious venue known for hosting some of Broadway’s most iconic shows.

Sweeney Todd has been on Broadway productions starts on February 26th, 2023 with running time of 2 hours and 45 minutes, intermission included.

20. Back to the Future on Broadway

As you venture into the NYC Broadway scene, one must-see show is Back to the Future The Musical.

This awe-inspiring production is an adaptation of the classic 1985 movie, bringing the delightful tale of Marty McFly and Doc Brown to life with infectious energy and undeniable enthusiasm.

The musical tells the tale of Marty McFly, a rock ‘n’ roll-loving teenager, who is transported back to 1955 in a time-traveling DeLorean created by his scientist friend, Dr. Emmett Brown.

In 1955, Marty’s actions risk altering his future, and he must work to keep history on track to return to 1985.

Critics and audience members alike are raving about the show, with USA Today calling it “A jaw-dropping spectacle that hits all the right buttons!”

Back to the Future The Musical is now playing on Winter Garden Theatre, with its exciting theatrics and outstanding performances captivating audience members of all ages. it starts on June 30th, 2023.

21. Hell’s Kitchen on Broadway

Experience the captivating journey of Alicia Keys’ new musical, Hell’s Kitchen on Broadway.

Based on the Grammy-winning musician’s New York upbringing, this musical takes you through a heartfelt story set in the iconic neighborhood of Hell’s Kitchen.

Witness a mesmerizing show directed by Michael Greif, choreographed by Camille A. Brown, and written by Kristopher Diaz, featuring Alicia Keys’ new and classic songs, all inspired by her New York City life.

You’ll get to see Hell’s Kitchen at the Shubert Theatre, just blocks away from the real-life Hell’s Kitchen neighborhood.

The musical has been running since March 28, 2024, and continues to captivate audiences with every performance.

Hell’s Kitchen has received glowing reviews, one reviewer describing it as “an efficient delivery system for Alicia Keys’ songs.”

22. The Heart of Rock and Roll on Broadway

Get ready to rock, because The Heart of Rock and Roll has arrived on Broadway!

This new musical comedy is inspired by the timeless hits of Huey Lewis and The News. The show takes you back to an era when the airwaves sizzled, and bands with platinum dreams rocked every dive bar.

The story follows Bobby and Cassandra, a will-they-won’t-they couple whose lives become intertwined through the power of music.

Corey Cott and McKenzie Kurtz star in this high-energy production, which has been captivating audiences since it first opened.

One review of the show praises saying “many of the songs do fit with the plot.”

The production is currently playing at The James Earl Jones Theater in New York City.

22 Must-See Broadway Shows in NYC: A Recap

Our curated selection of must-see Broadway shows in NYC offers a diverse array of narratives, each with its own distinct appeal.

The lineup includes the groundbreaking “Hamilton,” showcased at the Richard Rodgers Theatre since 2015, this show has been celebrated for its innovative music, lyrics, and storytelling.

Another standout is “Wicked,” a creative exploration of the witches from Oz, which has been a staple at the Gershwin Theatre since 2003.

This Broadway show collection is more than a list – it’s a gateway to diverse stories and worlds. Each New York City show offers a captivating and unforgettable Broadway experience with unique storytelling and performances. Dive into the magic of these theatrical marvels!

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *