The ‘Best Musicals’ on Broadway

5 Past TONY Winners that still draw crowds.

The 2013 Tony Awards have been announced, but did you know there are plenty of previous winners still on Broadway?  This month, NYCM highlights five Best Musical-winning productions that have outlasted the competition… and for good reason!

You don’t have to be a fan of Comedy Central’s South Park to appreciate what its creators have achieved with The Book of Mormon (Eugene O’Neill Theatre, 230 W. 49th St.).   This 2011 Tony Winner is the hottest ticket in town and has received massive acclaim from both fans and critics.  The gut-wrenchingly funny story follows two young, naïve, and optimistic Mormon missionaries sent to a remote village in Uganda, a country plagued with more pressing concerns like disease, famine and war.  It’s satire and musical comedy at its finest!

Just last year, the Tony Award for Best Musical went to Once, the enchanting tale of a Dublin street musician who’s about to give up on his dream when a beautiful young woman takes a sudden interest in his haunting love songs (Bernard B. Jacobs Theatre, 242 W. 45th St.).  Featuring incredible performances by talented actor/musicians, Once is an intimate experience with impassioned folk-infused songs that have been covered by many mainstream artists and TV shows like “American Idol” and “The Voice”.

The longest running show in Broadway history, The Phantom of the Opera is as moving today as it was 25 years ago (Majestic Theatre, 247 W. 44th St.)!  Come and experience New York’s most haunting love story about a mysterious and disfigured musical genius that becomes obsessed with a beautiful young soprano.  This Andrew Lloyd Webber classically charged masterpiece is a timeless story of seduction and despair with musical themes that resonate deeply.

For a Best Musical winner that appeals to a wider age of audience, The Lion King can’t be beat (Minskoff Theatre, 200 W. 45th St.).  This 1998 masterpiece brings the inspirational story to life through award-winning costume and set design, and a fantastic score by Elton John, Tim Rice, and Hans Zimmer.  Celebrate the “Circle of Life” and watch as young lion Simba grows from vulnerable cub into the king of the Pride Lands.

Lastly, for a crowd-pleasing, upbeat and fast-paced rags-to-riches tale, look no further than Jersey Boys (August Wilson Theatre, 245 W. 52nd St.).  The story follows four blue-collar kids working their way from the streets of Newark to the heights of stardom.  It’s a musical biography of Frankie Valli & The Four Seasons featuring a plethora of show-stopping hit songs including “Sherry”, “Big Girls Don’t Cry”, “Can’t Take My Eyes off You”, “Oh, What a Night” and more!

Summer is already half way over, so make August a month to remember by taking in one of these enduring Best Musical TONY Award-winning gems!