Broadway Musicals – the ones that London has yet to see

Recently Mark Shenton, the Stage critic and Musical Theatre show buff came up with ten Broadway Shows he would like to see professionally produced in London.

The ten were as follows:

The Act – the 1977 Kander & Ebb vehicle for Liza Minelli.

Woman of the Year – the 1981 Kander & Ebb vehicle for Lauren Bacall.

The Will Rogers Follies – the 1991 Coleman, Comden & Green’s tribute to the great American vaudeville and radio artist.

The Boy From Oz – the 1998 Australian tribute to Peter Allen that played Broadway in 2003 starring Hugh Jackman.

Legs Diamond – the 1988 Peter Allen flop Musical.

Catch Me if you Can – the 2011 almost ran based on the film of the same name.

The Last Ship – the 2014 Sting flop that brought back memories of Lionel Bart’s Maggie May.

The Bridges of Madison County – the 2014 Jason Robert Brown award winning show based on Robert James Waller’s successful book that was also filmed.

Far From Heaven – the 2013 Off Broadway Scott Frankel & Michael Korie show.

The Tap Dance Kid – the 1983 Henry Kreiger flop starring the young Savion Glover

For Mark’s reasons for these 10, go to The Stage page:

While not disagreeing with Mark’s suggestions we have come up with a further ten.  And, we would love to hear of other people’s ideas.  Producers should take note as there is no doubt that lingering out there are potential London hits. 

Let us know by clicking here and adding your suggestions –

Our further ten, listed in no particular order, are:


Redhead – a 1959 murder mystery multi Tony award winning show set in London in Jack the Ripper time set in a wax works.  Written by Arthur Hague and Dorothy Fields for Gwen Verdon.   It is very much a dance show and the original choreography was by Bob Fosse.


Walking Happy – seen in 1966 and based on the ever popular play Hobson’s Choice.   This became a vehicle for Norman Wisdom on Broadway, although not actually written with him in mind.  The score is by Sammy Cahn and James Van Heusen and has plenty of openings for a choreographer.

Gentleman’s Guide to Love and Murder? – A more recent Broadway show, this musical comedy by Robert L Freedman and Steven Lutvah is based on the book that inspired the film Kind Hearts and Coronets and the original novel by Roy Horniman.  It was Tony winning and had respectable run.


The Girl Who Came to Supper – something for the National to think about!  A Noel Coward score to a Terrance Rattigan story (the Prince and the Showgirl) is crying out for a London production.  Not a great hit on Broadway when produced in the sixties but why not now? 

The Golden Apple – a 1954 cult ‘handle with care’ piece that requires a director with ’inspiration’.  It originally caused a stir Off-Broadway but an up-town transfer was not a success.  Recently revived in New York as a part of the Encore season.

Li’l Abner – a colourful, funny dance packed show seen in 1958 and later filmed using the Broadway production as its base.  The inspiration was a long running newspaper Comic Strip with a score by Gene de Paul and Johnny Mercer.


New Girl in Town – 1958 and subject to a recent article (use the search button to read it).  I think now we are ready for an adult musical – especially one that can home in on dance. 

Ben Franklin in Paris – 1964 show by Sidney Michaels and Mark Sandrich Jr (includes a couple of songs written by Jerry Herman) set at the same time as Hamilton and about another founding father.  However, this is told in a far more traditional Broadway way.  Perhaps a fringe venue would be a good starting point.

Carmelina – 1979 – based on the movie Buena Sera Mrs Campbell (available on DVD in Spain) about a girl with three guys believing they are her father and set in a Mediterranean setting.   However, it doesn’t have a score by ABBA just a delightful one by Alan Jay Lerner and Burton Lane.


Jelly’s Last Jam – a strong 1992 Broadway hit based on the songs and story of Jerry Roll Morton it could be another Dreamgirls in waiting.  This piece boldly talks about race and colour within the creole community ‘down south’. 

RSB                                                                                 Illustrations from the Overtures archive