41 of the Most Classic Musicals of All Time

Whether you’re auditioning for musicals, setting up your rep book, or simply looking for some new musicals to get into, it’s good to get familiar with what’s out there. And that’s why we’ve put together this list of the most classic musicals of all time for you below, sorted alphabetically.


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42nd Street

Music: Harry Warren  Lyrics: Al Dubin, Johnny Mercer  Book: Michael Stewart, Mark Bramble

Musical Type: 1933 Film/Pre-Contemporary Musical (1980)

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A Chorus Line

Music: Marvin Hamlisch  Lyrics: Edward Kleban  Book: James Kirkwood Jr., Nicholas Dante

Musical Type: Pre-Contemporary (1975)

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A Funny Thing Happened on the Way to the Forum

Music/Lyrics: Stephen Sondheim  Book: Burt Shevelove, Larry Gelbart

Musical Type: Post-Golden Age (1962)

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Allegro

Music: Richard Rodgers  Book/Lyrics: Oscar Hammerstein II

Musical Type: Golden Age (1947)

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Annie

Music: Charles Strouse  Lyrics: Martin Charnin  Book:  Thomas Meehan

Musical Type: Pre-Contemporary (1976)

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Annie Get Your Gun

Music/Lyrics: Irving Berlin  Book: Dorothy Fields, Herbert Fields

Musical Type: Golden Age (1946)

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Anything Goes

Music/Lyrics: Cole Porter  Book: Guy Bolton, P.G. Wodehouse

Musical Type: Jazz Age (1934)

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Babes in Arms

Music/Book: Richard Rodgers  Lyrics/Book: Lorenz Hart

Musical Type: Jazz Age (1937)

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Bye Bye Birdie

Music: Charles Strouse  Lyrics: Lee Adams  Book: Michael Stewart

Musical Type: Post-Golden Age (1960)

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Cabaret

Music: John Kander  Lyrics: Fred Ebb  Book: Joe Masteroff

Musical Type: Post-Golden Age (1966)

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Camelot

Music: Frederick Loewe  Lyrics/Book: Alan Jay Lerner

Musical Type: Post-Golden Age (1960)

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Carousel

Music: Richard Rodgers  Book/Lyrics: Oscar Hammerstein II

Musical Type: Golden Age (1945)

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Damn Yankees

Music: Richard Adler  Lyrics: Jerry Ross  Book: George Abbott, Douglass Wallop

Musical Type: Golden Age (1955)

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Fiddler on the Roof

Music: Jerry Bock Lyrics: Sheldon Harnick Book: Joseph Stein

Musical Type: Post-Golden Age (1964)

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Funny Girl

Music: Jule Styne  Lyrics: Bob Merrill  Book: Isobel Lennart

Musical Type: Post-Golden Age (1964)

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Gentlemen Prefer Blondes

Music: Jule Styne  Lyrics: Leo Robin  Book: Joseph Fields, Anita Loos

Musical Type: Golden Age (1949)

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Grease

Music/Lyrics/Book: Jim Jacobs, Warren Casey

Musical Type: Pre-Contemporary (1971)

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Guys and Dolls

Music/Lyrics: Frank Loesser  Book: Jo Swerling, Abe Burrows

Musical Type: Golden Age (1950)

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Gypsy

Music: Jule Styne  Lyrics: Stephen Sondheim  Book: Arthur Laurents

Musical Type: Golden Age (1959)

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Hello, Dolly!

Music/Lyrics: Jerry Herman  Book: Michael Stewart

Musical Type: Post-Golden Age (1964)

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Jesus Christ Superstar

Music: Andrew Lloyd Webber  Lyrics: Tim Rice

Musical Type: Pre-Contemporary (1970)

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Joseph and the Amazing Technicolor Dreamcoat

Music: Andrew Lloyd Webber  Lyrics: Tim Rice

Musical Type: Pre-Contemporary (1968)

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Kiss Me, Kate

Music/Lyrics: Cole Porter  Book: Bella & Samuel Spewack

Musical Type: Golden Age (1948)

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Mary Poppins

Music/Lyrics: The Sherman Brothers, George StilesAnthony Drewe Book: Julian Fellowes

Musical Type: Post-Golden Age/Contemporary (2004)

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Meet Me in St. Louis

Music/Lyrics: Hugh Martin, Ralph Blane  Book: Hugh Wheeler

Musical Type: 1944 Film/Pre-Contemporary Musical (1989)

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My Fair Lady

Music: Frederick Loewe  Lyrics/Book: Alan Jay Lerner

Musical Type: Golden Age (1956)

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Oklahoma!

Music: Richard Rodgers  Book/Lyrics: Oscar Hammerstein II

Musical Type: Golden Age (1943)

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Oliver!

Music/Lyrics/Book: Lionel Bart

Musical Type: Post-Golden Age (1960)

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On the Town

Music: Leonard Bernstein  Lyrics/Book: Betty Comden, Adolph Green

Musical Type: Golden Age (1944)

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Once Upon a Mattress

Music: Mary Rodgers  Lyrics: Marshall Barer  Book: Thompson, Barer, Fuller

Musical Type: Golden Age (1959)

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Peter Pan

Music: Styne, Charlap, Rittman  Lyrics: Comden, Green, Leigh  Book: Barrie

Musical Type: Golden Age (1954)

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Pippin

Music/Lyrics: Stephen Schwartz  Book: Roger O. Hirson, Bob Fosse

Musical Type: Pre-Contemporary (1972)

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Show Boat

Music: Jerome Kern  Lyrics/Book: Oscar Hammerstein II

Musical Type: Jazz Age (1927)

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Singin’ in the Rain

Music: Nacio Herb Brown  Lyrics: Arthur Freed  Book: Adolph Green, Betty Comden

Musical Type: Golden Age/Pre-Contemporary (1952/1983)

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South Pacific

Music: Richard Rodgers  Lyrics/Book: Oscar Hammerstein II  Book: Joshua Logan

Musical Type: Golden Age (1949)

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Sweet Charity

Music: Cy Coleman  Lyrics: Dorothy Fields  Book: Neil Simon

Musical Type: Post-Golden Age (1966)

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The King and I

Music: Richard Rodgers  Book/Lyrics: Oscar Hammerstein II

Musical Type: Golden Age (1951)

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The Music Man

Music/Lyrics: Meredith Willson  Book: Franklin Lacey, Wilson

Musical Type: Golden Age (1957)

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The Sound of Music

Music: Richard Rodgers  Lyrics: Oscar Hammerstein II  Book: Howard Lindsay, Russel Crouse

Musical Type: Golden Age (1959)

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The Wizard of Oz

Music: Harold Arlen, Herbert Stothart  Lyrics:  E.Y. Harburg  Book: John Kane

Musical Type: Jazz Age/Pre-Contemporary (1939/1987)

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West Side Story

Music: Leonard Bernstein  Lyrics: Stephen Sondheim  Book: Arthur Laurents

Musical Type: Golden Age (1957)

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Other blog posts you might like:

Golden Age Musicals

Post Golden Age Musicals

Leonard Bernstein Musicals

Lerner and Loewe Musicals

Rodgers and Hammerstein Musicals


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Which of these classic musicals is your favorite?

Or have you ever played a role in any of the classic musicals above? Feel free to share in the comments below! And if you like these types of lists, check out the musical database. That’s where you’ll find musicals sorted by composer, theme, setting, and more!


Stacy Karyn, author of Classic Musicals.
Author: Stacy Karyn

Stacy Karyn is the founder of Theatre Trip, author of The Thespian’s Bucket List, and creator of The Cast Album List. She has a TESOL drama certificate, a BA in theatre, and has worked and interned with Broadway and Off-Broadway theaters.


 

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