The Best Shows You Can See on Broadway Right Now

Dream about the shows you'll be able to see... eventually.

Matthew Murphy
Matthew Murphy
Matthew Murphy

Broadway is starting to plot its comeback after more than a year of shut down due to the COVD-19 pandemic. Theaters will open starting September 14. Read up on what shows are coming back when and how you can buy tickets here. In any regular year, Broadway operates in waves. The first comes in the fall when a host of new shows open just before the influx of Christmastime tourists. The second arrives in the spring, as plays and musicals clamor for Tony Awards consideration. That being said: There’s truly never a bad time to see some great theater.

But what to see? Good thing you’re here. We’ve compiled a list of our favorite productions that debuted within the past three years. Expect updates and changes as more shows come and go.

Matthew Murphy
Matthew Murphy
Matthew Murphy


Opened: April 25, 2019
Cast: Alex Brightman, Sophia Anne Caruso, Kerry Butler, Leslie Kritzer
Director: Alex Timbers (Bloody Bloody Andrew Jackson, Oh, Hello!)
Why it’s great: In the battle of the movie adaptation musicals that hit Broadway in 2019, Beetlejuice has gotten the short end of the critical stick. While the New York Times, for instance, lavished praise on Tootsie, it dinged Beetlejuice — hard. But the ghost with the most offers a devilishly good, if over-the-top and disorganized, time. The creative team behind this spectacle doesn’t try to recreate the Tim Burton film note for note, and that’s a blessing. For instance, it knows that no one can match the zaniness of Catherine O’Hara, so turns overbearing step-mom Delia into a well-intentioned self-help guru. It doesn’t quite succeed in giving the character of Beetlejuice the emotional core it wants to, but Alex Brightman’s interpretation is a hoot.
Hear the number “Say My Name” from Beetlejuice

Matthew Murphy
Matthew Murphy
Matthew Murphy

Come From Away

Opened: March 12, 2017
Cast: Becky Gulsvig, Joel Hatch, Kenita R. Miller
Director: Christopher Ashley (Memphis, Xanadu)
Why it’s great: A “musical about 9/11” doesn’t sound like a particularly joyous way to spend an evening, but Come From Away avoids turgidity by honing in on its characters. The show stages the true story of a group of travelers rerouted on the tragic day and eventually taken in by residents of the small Canadian town of Gander, Newfoundland. The entire production feels charmingly intimate and DIY for Broadway, boasting a hardworking cast constantly on the move, always switching between accents and characters. The songs aren’t all that memorable, but they are galvanizing toe-tappers that elicit both smiles and tears.
Hear the number “Me and the Sky”

Matthew Murphy
Matthew Murphy
Matthew Murphy

Dear Evan Hansen

Opened: December 4, 2016
Cast: Jordan Fisher, Gabrielle Carrubba, Jessica Phillips
Director: Michael Greif (War Paint, If/Then)
Why it’s great: Every so often a musical comes along that captures the hearts of the high school drama club crowd. Rent played that role in the 1990s. The aughts brought Spring Awakening. Now, it’s Dear Evan Hansen. In turn, you may feel, as I did, that you’re not the right demographic for it, perhaps unwilling to overlook the ethical missteps in its tale of self-acceptance. Still, the show from La La Land lyricists Justin Paul and Benj Pasek has plenty of fans. The story of an anxiety-ridden teen who finds his voice after a series of misunderstandings stemming from a bully’s suicide won the top prize at last year’s Tonys. Even if you’re a naysayer like I was, you can still appreciate what Dear Evan Hansen has to offer, specifically some stirring ballads.
Hear the number “Waving Through a Window”

Matthew Murphy
Matthew Murphy
Matthew Murphy

Girl from the North Country 

Opened: March 5, 2020
Cast: Mare Winningham, Marc Kudisch, Jay O. Sanders 
Director: Conor McPherson (The Seafarer)
Why it’s great: Jukebox musicals are typically seen as crowd-pleasing affairs, but that is not Girl from the North Country. Sure, it uses the music of Bob Dylan, but it’s not encouraging any singalongs. Instead, the Irish playwright Conor McPherson, who also directs, uses the folk rock legend’s music to punctuate a tale of sorrow at a boarding house in Depression-era Minnesota. The songs are deep cuts for the most part, though Mare Winningham does deliver a stirring rendition of “Like a Rolling Stone.” It’s a chilly affair with a bleakness that can be overwhelming at times. 
Listen to “Slow Train/License to Kill” 

Matthew Murphy
Matthew Murphy
Matthew Murphy


Opened: April 17, 2019
Cast: Reeve Carney, Eva Noblezada, Amber Gray, André de Shields, Patrick Page
Director: Rachel Chavkin (Natasha, Pierre & The Great Comet of 1812)
Hadestown tells an ancient story in an old-timey vernacular and is still one of the freshest things you’ll see on Broadway. Stemming from a concept album singer-songwriter Anaïs Mitchell put out back in 2010, it uses Americana folk and jazz traditions to reinvent the tale of Orpheus and Eurydice, young lovers who get mixed up with the fickle gods of the underworld, Hades and Persephone. Mitchell weaves nods to current struggles like climate change into the narrative — and Hades’ threatening song “Why We Build The Wall” has only grown more eerily relevant since she composed it — but director Rachel Chavkin’s stunning imbues it with earthy magic that will take your breath away.
Watch the number “Wait For Me” 

Joan Marcus
Joan Marcus
Joan Marcus


Opened: August 6, 2015
Cast: Jimmie ‘JJ’ Jeter, Daniel Breaker, Mandy Gonzalez, Krystal Joy Brown
Director: Thomas Kail (Lombardi, In the Heights)
Why it’s great: Given that Lin-Manuel’s unstoppable, rap-infused dramatization of the founding father’s life is arguably the 21st century’s one true theatrical masterpiece, you probably figured we’d include it here. Hamilton is a musical that’s made audiences reconsider the medium, and while it’s still difficult to get tickets, these days you don’t even have to be in New York to see it: There are productions in Chicago and London as well as a national tour currently underway.
Hear the number “Alexander Hamilton”

Manuel Harlan
Manuel Harlan
Manuel Harlan

Harry Potter and the Cursed Child

Opened: April 22, 2018
Cast: Jenny Jules, Matt Mueller, Nicholas Podany, Bubba Weiler, James Snyder
Director: John Tiffany (Once, The Glass Menagerie)
Why it’s great: The lore of Harry Potter seems to just keep spreading. While the cinematic evolution of this world has yielded mixed results — looking at you, Fantastic Beasts franchise — the stage sequel to the saga of Harry, Ron, and Hermione, set 19 years after Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows, manages to impress. Director John Tiffany has translated the spells and magical whatsits of J.K. Rowling’s universe into wondrous stagecraft. Meanwhile, Harry’s strained relationship with his middle child effectively grounds the story, making sure all the wizardry has some heart behind it. On top of all that, the flying Dementors are successfully spooky as shit.
Listen to Imogen Heap’s score for the play

Matthew Murphy
Matthew Murphy
Matthew Murphy

Jagged Little Pill 

Opened: December 5, 2019 
Cast: Elizabeth Stanley, Celia Rose Gooding, Lauren Patten, Derek Klena
Director: Diane Paulus (Waitress, Pippin
Why it’s great: Jagged Little Pill is A LOT. The Alanis Morissette jukebox musical with a book by Diablo Cody is a suburban set melodrama that tackles everything from rape to opioid addiction. It’s also…definitely fun in a messy sort of way. It’s like an episode of Euphoria with a ’90s, Rent-like edge thanks to Morissette’s unimpeachably good songs. If nothing else, go for Lauren Patten quite literally stopping the show every night with her fiery rendition of “You Oughta Know.” 
Hear the number “You Oughta Know”

Joan Marcus
Joan Marcus
Joan Marcus

Mean Girls

Opened: April 8, 2018
Cast: Erika Henningsen, Renée Rapp, Grey Henson
Director: Casey Nicholaw (The Book of Mormon, Aladdin)
Why it’s great: The long-rumored Mean Girls musical finally came to fruition, and it’s better than you could have hoped. No, there’s no “Fetch” song, but there are clever tunes from composer Jeff Richmond and lyricist Nell Benjamin, which complement the snappy dialogue from none other than Tina Fey. Fey has updated her urtext about the monstrosity of teens for this day and age with references to iPhones and social media, and, if anything, the show delves even deeper into the psychology of girlhood than the movie does. All that is reason enough to check it out, but you’re also going to want to see the fabulous cast, who will make you forget all about Lindsay Lohan and Rachel McAdams.
Hear the number “I’d Rather Be Me”

Liz Lauren
Liz Lauren
Liz Lauren


Opened: March 12, 2020
Cast: Adrianna Hicks, Andrea Macasaet, Brittney Mack, Abby Mueller, Samantha Pauly, Anna Uzele
Directors: Lucy Moss and Jamie Armitage 
Why it’s great: Six is quite possibly the best time you’ll have on Broadway this season. There are deaths, divorces, and beheadings, but that’s just par (if not Parr, as in Catherine) for the course when you’re dealing with the six wives of Henry VIII. But this production imagines the ladies as fierce pop stars, a girl group in the guise of the Spice Girls or Fifth Harmony. The members of Six stage a competition for the audience every night: They’ll each get a solo detailing their tragic tale and whichever one had the worst time being married to the English monarch wins. Catherine of Aragon starts things off with a Beyoncé-esque jam about annulment. Anne of Cleves brings down the house with her killer bop about living large after Henry thinks she doesn’t match her Hans Holbein portrait (a.k.a. her profile picture). Jane Seymour sings a plaintive ballad. All the performers do some incredible vocal olympics, belting high notes and doing runs as if their lives depended on it. The show’s feel-good feminist messaging is not all that challenging, but who cares when you’re caught up in the catchy tunes.
Watch highlights from the show

Julieta Cervantes
Julieta Cervantes
Julieta Cervantes

To Kill a Mockingbird

Opened: December 13, 2018
Cast: Ed Harris, Nick Robinson, Taylor Trensch, LisaGay Hamilton
Director: Bartlett Sher (My Fair Lady, The King and I)
Why it’s great: Aaron Sorkin’s adaptation of Harper Lee’s seminal novel had a rough journey to Broadway, but it overcame a lawsuit to become one of the biggest hits of the season. Sure, it was snubbed for Best Play at the Tonys, but you should still make time for it — that is, if you can snag a ticket. What’s most fascinating about Sorkin’s take on the material is how he chooses to reframe Atticus Finch’s famous arguments. This isn’t some kind of Go Set a Watchmen revision of the character, but the play takes a skeptical eye to Finch’s axioms about walking around in another person’s shoes, while still allowing for all the speechifying you’d expect from a Sorkin-Jeff Daniels collaboration. (Daniels originated the role. Now Ed Harris takes over.) Adult actors savvily play the children, Scout, Jem, and Dill, who narrate the action. Their voices are a highlight, as is the expanded role of Calpurnia. 

Jan Versweyveld
Jan Versweyveld
Jan Versweyveld

West Side Story 

Opened: February 20, 2020 
Cast: Isaac Poweell, Shereen Pimentel, Yesenia Ayala, Dharon E. Jones
Director: Ivo van Hove (Network
Why it’s great: Belgian director Ivo van Hove has been a regular presence on Broadway since about 2015, and his productions of classic works are almost always divisive. You love him or you hate him, and you’ll probably feel one of those emotions when watching his new West Side Story, which is controversial for numerous reasons. Van Hove has taken one of the most revered works of musical theater in history and reinvented it with his own, austere aesthetics. Now the Jets and Sharks don’t do Jerome Robbins’ buoyant choreography. Instead, they move in a harsher manner, slicing their arms. They perform the entire show in front of a giant screen that sometimes displays closeups of the actors, and sometimes broadcasts previously filmed images. “I Feel Pretty” has been excised — that would be too happy — and the show has been condensed to a tight 105 minutes with no intermission. Some of van Hove’s technical wizardry is effective; other times it’s just overbearing. But what’s certain is that van Hove has found two extraordinary rising stars to play Tony and Maria. Beyond their wonderful voices, Isaac Powell and Shereen Pimentel make the star-crossed lovers’ tryst pulsate with sexy, doomed energy. 
Listen to “Something’s Coming” Sign up here for our daily Thrillist email and subscribe here for our YouTube channel to get your fix of the best in food/drink/fun.

Esther Zuckerman is a senior entertainment writer at Thrillist. Follow her on Twitter @ezwrites.


Where to Celebrate Lunar New Year 2023 in Australia

And what it means to be in the year of the Rabbit.

where to celebrate lunar new year australia

Starting with the new moon on Sunday, January 22, this Lunar New Year ushers in the year of the Rabbit. We’ve put together a guide on celebrating the Lunar New Year in Australia.

What is special about the year of the Rabbit?

As you might know, each year has an animal sign in the Chinese Zodiac, which is based on the moon and has a 12-year cycle. This year, we celebrate the year of the rabbit, known to be the luckiest out of all twelve animals. It symbolises mercy, elegance, and beauty.

What celebrations are taking place and how can I get involved?

There are plenty of festivals happening all around the country which you can get involved with. Here they are per state.

New South Wales

Darling Harbour Fireworks
When: Every year, Sydney puts on a fireworks show, and this year, you can catch it on January 28 and February 4 at 9 pm in Darling Harbour.

Dragon Boat Races
When: Witness three days of dragon boat races and entertainment on Cockle Bay to usher in the Lunar New Year. The races will commence on January 27 and finish on January 29.

Lion Dances
When: Catch a traditional Lion Dance moving to the beat of a vigorous drum bringing good luck and fortune for the Lunar New Year. The dance performances will happen across Darling Harbour on Saturday, January 21, Sunday, January 22, and Sunday, February 4 and 5, around 6 pm and 9 pm.

Lunar New Year at Cirrus Dining
When: Barangaroo’s waterfront seafood restaurant, Cirrus, is celebrating the Year of the Rabbit with a special feast menu. Cirrus’ LNY menu is $128pp with optional wine pairing and is available from Saturday, January 21, to Sunday, February 5.

Auntie Philter
When: Hello Auntie’s owner and executive chef, Cuong Nguyen will be dishing out some of the most classic Vietnamese street foods with his mum, Linda. All of Philter’s favourites will be on offer, as well as Raspberry Pash Beer Slushies and other cocktails being served at the Philter Brewing rooftop bar on Sunday, January 22 and Sunday, January 29.


Lunar New Year Festival
When: Ring in the Lunar New Year with food, music, arts, and more on Sunday, January 22, from 10 am to 9 pm.

Lunar New Year at the National Gallery of Victoria
When: Celebrate the year of the rabbit at the National Gallery of Victoria’s festival of art, food, and art-making activities for everyone from 10 am-5 pm.


BriAsia Festival
When: From February 1-19, Brisbane will come alive with performances, including lion dances and martial arts displays. There will be street food, workshops, comedy and more.

South Australia

Chinatown Adelaide Street Party
When: Adelaide is set to hose a fun-filled day celebrating the Chinese New Year on Saturday, January 28, from 12 pm to 9 pm.

Western Australia

Crown Perth
When: Across January and February, Crown Perth hosts free live entertainment, including colourful lion dances, roving mascots, and drumming performances. The restaurants will also throw banquets and menus dedicated to the Lunar New Year.

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