Musical Lists

41+ Musicals About Musicals – The Full List of Shows

To celebrate World Theatre Day this year, we’ve put together a list of some of the greatest musicals about musicals! The following list is broken down into three categories – “Musicals About Musicals”, “Musicals About Theatre”, and “Musicals That Break the Fourth Wall”.


Please note: This post contains affiliate links. This means that if you choose to make a purchase through one of the following links, we may earn a small commission on the sale at no additional cost to you. See our disclosure for more info.


Musicals About Musicals

The following shows feature musical theatre in the plot or a fictional musical within the narrative.


42nd Street

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

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

Genre: Comedy


A Chorus Line

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

Musical Type: Pre-Contemporary (1975)

Genre: Dramedy


A Class Act

Music/Lyrics: Edward Kleban  Book: Linda Kline, Lonny Price

Musical Type: Contemporary (2000)

Genre: Semi-Autobiographical


A Strange Loop

Music/Lyrics/Book: Michael R. Jackson

Musical Type: Contemporary (2019)

Genre: Dramedy


Broadway Bounty Hunter

Music/Lyrics/Book: Joe Iconis  Book: Lance Rubin, Jason SweetTooth Williams

Musical Type: Contemporary (2019)

Genre: Comedy/Camp


Copacabana

Music/Book: Barry Manilow  Lyrics/Book: Bruce Sussman, Jack Feldman

Musical Type: Pre-Contemporary (1990)

Genre: Romantic Dramedy


Crazy for You

Music: George Gershwin  Lyrics: Ira Gershwin  Book: Ken Ludwig

Musical Type: Jazz Age/Pre-Contemporary (1992)

Genre: Romantic Comedy


Curtains

Music/Lyrics: John Kander  Lyrics: Fred Ebb  Lyrics/Book: Rupert Holmes

Musical Type: Contemporary (2006)

Genre: Murder Mystery


Dames at Sea

Music: Jim Wise  Lyrics/Book: George Haimsohn, Robin Miller

Musical Type: Post-Golden Age (1966)

Genre: Parody


Dog Man: The Musical

Music: Brad Alexander  Lyrics/Book: Kevin Del Aguila

Musical Type: Contemporary (2019)

Genre: Youth Theatre


Follies

Music/Lyrics: Stephen Sondheim  Book: James Goldman

Musical Type: Pre-Contemporary (1971)

Genre: Drama/Fantasy


Forbidden Broadway

Music: Various  Lyrics/Book: Gerard Alessandrini

Musical Type: Series (1980s-2020s)

Genre: Parody


Funny Girl

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

Musical Type: Post-Golden Age (1964)

Genre: Semi-Biography


Gutenberg! The Musical!

Music/Lyrics/Book: Scott Brown, Anthony King

Musical Type: Contemporary (2005)

Genre: Comedy


High School Musical

Music/Lyrics: Various  Book: David Simpatico

Musical Type: Contemporary (2007)

Genre: Dramedy


Infinite Joy

Music/Lyrics: William Finn

Musical Type: Contemporary (2000)

Genre: Revue


Jerome Robbins’ Broadway

Music/Lyrics: Various

Musical Type: Pre-Contemporary (1989)

Genre: Revue


Kiss Me, Kate

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

Musical Type: Golden Age (1948)

Genre: Rom-Com


LoveMusik

Music: Kurt Weill  Lyrics: Various  Book: Alfred Uhry

Musical Type: Contemporary (2007)

Genre: Drama


Me and Juliet

Music: Richard Rodgers  Lyrics/Book: Oscar Hammerstein II

Musical Type: Golden Age (1953)

Genre: Rom-Com


Merrily We Roll Along

Music/Lyrics: Stephen Sondheim  Book: George Furth

Musical Type: Pre-Contemporary (1981)

Genre: Dramedy


Nativity!

Music/Lyrics: Nicky Ager  Lyrics/Book: Debbie Isitt

Musical Type: Contemporary (2017)

Genre: Comedy


Nunset Boulevard

Music/Lyrics/Book: Dan Goggin

Musical Type: Contemporary (2009)

Genre: Comedy


Parade

Music/Lyrics/Book: Jerry Herman

Musical Type: Post-Golden Age (1960)

Genre: Revue


Prince of Broadway

Music/Lyrics: Various  Book: David Thompson

Musical Type: Contemporary (2015)

Genre: Revue


Ruthless!

Music: Marvin Laird  Lyrics/Book: Joel Paley

Musical Type: Pre-Contemporary (1992)

Genre: Dark Comedy


Say, Darling

Music: Jule Styne  Lyrics: Betty Comden, Adolph Green  Book: Abe Burrows, Marian & Richard Bissell

Musical Type: Golden Age (1958)

Genre: Dramedy


Singin’ in the Rain

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

Musical Type: 1952 Film/Pre-Contemporary Musical (1983)

Genre: Rom-Com


Something Rotten!

Music/Lyrics/Book: Karey Kirkpatrick  Music/Lyrics: Wayne Kirkpatrick  Book: John O’Farrell

Musical Type: Contemporary (2015)

Genre: Comedy


Spamilton

Music: Various  Lyrics/Book: Gerard Alessandrini

Musical Type: Contemporary (2016)

Genre: Parody


The Drowsy Chaperone

Music/Lyrics: Lisa Lambert, Greg Morrison  Book: Bob Martin, Don McKellar

Musical Type: Pre-Contemporary (1998)

Genre: Parody


The Guy Who Didn’t Like Musicals

Music/Lyrics: Jeff Blim  Book: Nick Lang, Matt Lang

Musical Type: Contemporary (2018)

Genre: Comedic Horror


The Musical of Musicals (The Musical!)

Music/Book: Eric Rockwell  Lyrics/Book: Joanne Bogart

Musical Type: Contemporary (2003)

Genre: Parody


The Noteworthy Life of Howard Barnes

Music: Michael Kooman  Lyrics/Book: Christopher Dimond

Musical Type: Contemporary (2018)

Genre: Comedy


The Producers

Music/Lyrics/Book: Mel Brooks  Book: Thomas Meehan

Musical Type: 1967 Film/Contemporary Musical (2001)

Genre: Comedy


The Prom

Music: Matthew Sklar  Lyrics/Book: Chad Beguelin  Book: Bob Martin

Musical Type: Contemporary (2016)

Genre: Dramedy


The Show Goes On

Music: Harvey Schmidt  Lyrics: Tom Jones

Musical Type: Pre-Contemporary (1997)

Genre: Revue


Tick, Tick…BOOM!

Music/Lyrics/Book: Jonathan Larson

Musical Type: Pre-Contemporary/Contemporary (1990/2001)

Genre: Semi-Autobiography


[title of show]

Music/Lyrics: Jeff Bowen  Book: Hunter Bell

Musical Type: Contemporary (2006)

Genre: Comedy


Tootsie

Music/Lyrics: David Yazbek  Book: Robert Horn

Musical Type: Contemporary (2018)

Genre: Comedy


When Pigs Fly

Music: Dick Gallagher  Book/Lyrics/Concept: Mark Waldrop  Concept: Howard Crabtree

Musical Type: Pre-Contemporary (1996)

Genre: Revue/Comedy


Musicals About Theatre

The following musicals feature theatre in the plot or intertwine a play within the musical’s narrative.


A Killer Party

Music: Jason Howland  Lyrics: Nathan Tysen  Book: Rachel Axler, Kait Kerrigan

Musical Type: Contemporary (2020)

Genre: Murder Mystery


Anything Can Happen in the Theater

Music/Lyrics: Maury Yeston  Concept: Gerard Alessandrini

Musical Type: Contemporary (2019)

Genre: Revue


Applause

Music: Charles Strouse  Lyrics: Lee Adams  Book: Betty Comden, Adolph Green

Musical Type: Pre-Contemporary (1970)

Genre: Dramedy


Babes in Arms

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

Musical Type: Jazz Age (1937)

Genre: Comedy


Be More Chill

Music/Lyrics: Joe Iconis  Book: Joe Tracz

Musical Type: Contemporary (2015)

Genre: Science Fiction


Birds of Paradise

Music/Book: David Evans  Lyrics/Book: Winnie Holzman

Musical Type: Pre-Contemporary (1987)

Genre: Dramedy


BKLYN: The Musical

Music/Lyrics/Book: Mark Schoenfeld, Barri McPherson

Musical Type: Contemporary (2004)

Genre: Dramedy


Bullets Over Broadway

Music/Lyrics: Various  Book: Woody Allen

Musical Type: Contemporary (2014)

Genre: Comedy


Elephant and Piggie’s “We Are in a Play”

Music: Deborah Wicks La Puma  Lyrics/Book: Mo Willems

Musical Type: Contemporary (2013)

Genre: Youth Theatre


Face the Music

Music/Lyrics: Irving Berlin Book: Moss Hart

Musical Type: Jazz Age (1932)

Genre: Satire


Fame

Music: Steve Margoshes  Lyrics: Jacques Levy  Book: José Fernandez

Musical Type: Pre-Contemporary (1988)

Genre: Dramedy


Fame Becomes Me

Music/Lyrics: Marc Shaiman  Lyrics: Scott Wittman  Book: Martin Short, Daniel Goldfarb

Musical Type: Contemporary (2006)

Genre: Semi-Autobiography/Comedy


Fancy Nancy

Music/Lyrics: Danny Abosch  Lyrics/Book: Susan DiLallo

Musical Type: Contemporary (2012)

Genre: Theatre for Young Audiences


Finding Neverland

Music/Lyrics: Gary Barlow, Eliot Kennedy  Music: Scott Frankel  Lyrics: Michael Korie  Book: Allan Knee, James Graham

Musical Type: Contemporary (2012)

Genre: Drama


Goosebumps

Music/Lyrics: Danny Abosch  Lyrics/Book: John Maclay

Musical Type: Contemporary (2016)

Genre: Comedic Horror


Jennie

Music/Lyrics: Arthur Schwartz, Howard Dietz  Book: Arnold Schulman

Musical Type: Post-Golden Age (1963)

Genre: Romantic Dramedy


Kean

Music/Lyrics: Robert Wright, George Forrest  Book: Peter Stone

Musical Type: Post-Golden Age (1961)

Genre: Rom-Dram


Love Birds

Music/Lyrics/Book: Robert J. Sherman

Musical Type: Contemporary (2015)

Genre: Fantasy


Miss Littlewood

Music/Lyrics/Book: Sam Kenyon

Musical Type: Contemporary (2018)

Genre: Biography


Moby Dick

Music/Lyrics/Book: Robert Longden, Hereward Kaye

Musical Type: Pre-Contemporary (1990)

Genre: Comedy/Camp


On the Twentieth Century

Music: Cy Coleman  Lyrics/Book: Betty Comden, Adolph Green

Musical Type: Pre-Contemporary (1978)

Genre: Comedy


Phantom

Music/Lyrics: Maury Yeston  Book: Arthur Kopit

Musical Type: Pre-Contemporary (1991)

Genre: Drama/Horror


The Frogs

Music/Lyrics: Stephen Sondheim  Book: Burt Shevelove, Nathan Lane

Musical Type: Pre-Contemporary (1974)

Genre: Satire/Fantasy


The Girl in Pink Tights

Music: Sigmund Romberg  Lyrics: Leo Robin  Book: Jerome Chodorov, Joseph Fields

Musical Type: Golden Age (1954)

Genre: Comedy


The Glorious Ones

Music: Stephen Flaherty  Lyrics/Books: Lynn Ahrens

Musical Type: Contemporary (2007)

Genre: Dramedy


The King and I

Music: Richard Rodgers  Lyrics/Book: Oscar Hammerstein II

Musical Type: Golden Age (1951)

Genre: Rom-Dram


The Phantom of the Opera

Music/Book: Andrew Lloyd Webber  Lyrics: Charles Hart  Lyrics/Book: Richard Stilgoe

Musical Type: Pre-Contemporary (1986)

Genre: Mystery/Thriller


Musicals That Break the 4th Wall

These musicals break the fourth wall by having the performers address the audience or acknowledge that they are in a musical.


70, Girls, 70

Music: John Kander  Lyrics: Fred Ebb  Book: David Thompson, Norman L. Martin

Musical Type: Pre-Contemporary (1971)

Genre: Comedy


A Gentleman’s Guide to Love and Murder

Music/Lyrics: Steven Lutvak  Lyrics/Book: Robert L. Freedman

Musical Type: Contemporary (2012)

Genre: Comedy


Anyone Can Whistle

Music/Lyrics: Stephen Sondheim  Book: Arthur Laurents

Musical Type: Post-Golden Age (1964)

Genre: Satire


Anything Goes

* In the musical number “Friendship”

Music/Lyrics: Cole Porter  Book: Guy Bolton, P.G. Wodehouse, Howard Lindsay, Russel Crouse

Musical Type: Jazz Age (1934)

Genre: Rom-Com


Diana

Music/Lyrics: David Bryan  Lyrics/Book: Joe DiPietro

Musical Type: Contemporary (2019)

Genre: Biography


Ernest Shackleton Loves Me

Music: Brendan Milburn  Lyrics: Valerie Vigoda  Book: Joe DiPietro

Musical Type: Contemporary (2017)

Genre: Fantasy/Romantic Dramedy


Evil Dead

Music/Lyrics/Book: George Reinblatt  Music: Christopher Bond, Frank Cipolla, Melissa Morris

Musical Type: Contemporary (2003)

Genre: Fantasy/Parody


Forever Plaid

Music/Lyrics: Various  Book: Stuart Ross

Musical Type: Pre-Contemporary (1989)

Genre: Revue


Hadestown

Music/Lyrics/Book: Anaïs Mitchell

Musical Type: Contemporary (2006)

Genre: Mythic Fantasy


Hair

Music: Galt MacDermot  Lyrics/Book: Gerome Ragni, James Rado

Musical Type: Post-Golden Age (1967)

Genre: Dramedy


Holiday Inn

Music/Lyrics: Irving Berlin  Book: Gordon Greenberg, Chad Hodge

Musical Type: Contemporary (2014)

Genre: Romantic Comedy


Joseph and the Amazing Technicolor Dreamcoat

Music: Andrew Lloyd Webber  Lyrics: Tim Rice

Musical Type: Pre-Contemporary (1968)

Genre: Dramedy


Putting It Together

Music/Lyrics: Stephen Sondheim

Musical Type: Pre-Contemporary (1992)

Genre: Revue


Return to the Forbidden Planet

Music/Lyrics: Various  Book: Bob Carlton

Musical Type: Pre-Contemporary (1983)

Genre: Science Fiction


Spamalot

Music: John Du Prez  Music/Lyrics/Book: Eric Idle

Musical Type: Contemporary (2004)

Genre: Parody/Fantasy


Stop the World – I Want to Get Off

Music/Lyrics/Book: Leslie Bricusse, Anthony Newley

Musical Type: Post-Golden Age (1961)

Genre: Dramedy


Sweeney Todd

* During “Epiphany” and “The Ballad of Sweeney Todd”

Music/Lyrics: Stephen Sondheim  Book: Hugh Wheeler

Musical Type: Pre-Contemporary (1979)

Genre: Horror


The 25th Annual Putnam County Spelling Bee

Music/Lyrics: William Finn  Book: Rachel Sheinkin

Musical Type: Contemporary (2005)

Genre: Comedy


The Frogs

Music/Lyrics: Stephen Sondheim  Book: Burt Shevelove, Nathan Lane

Musical Type: Pre-Contemporary (1974)

Genre: Satire/Fantasy


The Mystery of Edwin Drood

Music/Lyrics/Book: Rupert Holmes

Musical Type: Pre-Contemporary (1985)

Genre: Murder Mystery


The Will Rogers Follies

Music: Cy Coleman  Lyrics: Betty Comden, Adolph Green  Book: Peter Stone

Musical Type: Pre-Contemporary (1991)

Genre: Metamusical


Urinetown

Music/Lyrics: Mark Hollmann  Lyrics/Book: Greg Kotis

Musical Type: Contemporary (2001)

Genre: Satire/Comedy


Want to stay in the loop with all things related to musical theatre?

Sign up for Theatre Thursday.


Which of the above musicals about musicals are your favorite?

Have you ever played a role in one of the above musicals about musicals? What’s your favorite 4th wall breaking moment in musical theatre? 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 Musicals About 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 holds a BA in theatre, a TESOL drama certificate, and has worked and interned with Broadway and Off-Broadway theaters.


 

Leave a Reply

Skip to content