While “Broadway” refers to a specific set of Tony-eligible theatres located in midtown Manhattan, the term is metonymic of an entire industry. To theatergoers around the country and world, “Broadway” translates to high-quality musicals and plays performed by world-class artists; overall top-notch theatre.
Since not everyone can make it to New York City, the magic of Broadway is brought to audiences across North America through touring productions. With the holidays approaching, these special productions can also serve as great family activities, or even just a great gift for your theatre-loving-loved-ones. Here’s a glimpse into some of Broadway’s best touring shows that are currently captivating audiences from coast to coast (and beyond).
Based on Tim Burton’s iconic film, Beetlejuice brings the afterlife to the stage with humor, irreverence, and spectacular special effects. After two Broadway runs, pre- and post-shutdown, the show has gone out across the country, where it continues to make headlines, both for what’s happening onstage and off…
The Lion King
Disney’s The Lion King continues its reign as a theatrical masterpiece, both on Broadway at the Minskoff Theatre and in touring houses all over. Since opening on Broadway in 1997 and launching its first tour in 2002, the modern classic has had several national and international tour companies bringing Simba’s story far and wide. The latest tour launched in 2017 and is still going strong, with dates scheduled through summer 2024.
Ease on down the road with The Wiz, a soulful and energetic retelling of “The Wizard of Oz.” Set to hit Broadway in spring 2024 with Schele Williams at the helm and Wayne Brady in the title role following the tour, this production promises to bring a fresh and vibrant perspective to the beloved tale.
ABBA’s hits take center stage in Mamma Mia, now back on the road celebrating the show’s 25th anniversary. Since opening on Broadway in 2001, the jukebox musical has had many touring and international engagements, as well as two film installments (to date), becoming a global cultural phenomenon. You now have your shot to get in on the fun; the new tour kicked off in Elmira, NY in October 2023 and is scheduled to travel the country through at least summer 2024.
After a bountiful Broadway run with Lea Michele in the leading role, the revival has hit the road. The classic musical Funny Girl tells the story of Fanny Brice, a legendary Ziegfeld Follies star. With a blend of humor, romance, and unforgettable music, this production showcases the indomitable spirit of a woman who dared to follow her dreams. Michael Mayer’s direction alongside choreography by Ellenore Scott is now on view in theatres around the country.
Wicked has cast its spell on audiences for over 20 years as it explores the untold story of the Witches of Oz. This visually stunning production, featuring iconic songs like ‘Defying Gravity,’ ‘Popular,’ ‘For Good,’ and more, continues to captivate with its imaginative storytelling and powerful performances. The tour continues to make stops all over North America, with several international productions having played all over the world over the years. Even more theatre enthusiasts will also get to experience the magic of Wicked when Jon M. Chu’s two-part film adaptation starring Cynthia Erivo and Ariana Grande hits movie theatres in 2024 and 2025.
Britney Coleman leads the cast of this national tour as Bobbie. Following its 2021-2022 Tony-winning Broadway run, this Sondheim revival is traveling the country, with stops scheduled into late summer of 2024. In Marianne Elliot’s updated take on the classic concept musical, Bobbie is a 35-year-old woman reckoning with her love life as well as those of her mostly married friends, and haunted by the pressures of living in 21st century New York City.
Girl From the North Country
Playwright Conor McPherson’s narrative spin on the song catalog of Bob Dylan launched a cross-country tour in October 2023, kicking things off in Minneapolis. The folk musical played two separate engagements at the Belasco Theatre, closing in June 2022. The tour currently has stops scheduled into mid-2024 with more to be announced!
Lin-Manuel Miranda’s revolutionary musical Hamilton remains a cultural phenomenon. This hip-hop-infused tale of Alexander Hamilton’s life has become a must-see for theater enthusiasts, and good thing then that there are so many opportunities to see it, with as many as three separate touring companies having launched, sometimes playing different ends of the country at the same time.
Hadestown offers a unique and mesmerizing take on the ancient Greek myths of Orpheus & Eurydice and Hades & Persephone. This Tony Award-winning Best Musical combines folk, jazz, and blues music to sing this “old song” again and again and again. With short stints through the United States on offer until May 2024, don’t miss catching Anaïs Mitchell’s hauntingly beautiful score and lyrics while you can!
Broadway enthusiasts can catch so many more sensational productions currently on tour, including Aladdin, MJ The Musical, To Kill a Mockingbird, Moulin Rouge!, Mrs. Doubtfire, SIX, and more!
Broadway’s best touring shows offer a taste of the magic and excitement that define the New York City theater scene. Whether it’s a timeless classic, a contemporary hit, or a reimagined tale, these productions bring the thrill of Broadway to audiences across North America and around the world. So, grab your tickets, sit back, and let the enchantment unfold in a city near you!