Best Musicals

Let’s jump right into it then shall we? Here’s my list of my favourite musicals.

High School Musical

I don’t care what you say I loved this movie as a teenager! I knew all the songs, I would sing along and I even learnt the dances. It was such a great movie. It was smooth and seamless. It took me on such an emotional journey and taught me it was okay to be myself. You’d think this is common sense but really in secondary school (or high school if you’re American) it can be hard to be yourself, especially when you’re quirky. So I loved the movie for that.

I also loved that the movie addressed how you don’t have to be defined by one quality. There’s more to a person than that. Whereas in school they try to put you in a box but the movie was like, “Nah, ain’t no such thing as boxes, stop that!”

My favourite songs: Start of Something New, Stick to the Status Quo, When There Was Me and You, Breaking Free and What I’ve Been Looking For (Reprise).

Hairspray

Now I didn’t know about this musical before it was made into a movie. So I only know the movie adaptation. I would love to see it on stage one day though.

Anyway the movie, it was so fun, genuinely fun! From beginning to end I was in it and had connected with the characters. The story was good, the singing was good and the songs were amazing! I loved Tracy’s character, Zac Efron and Amanda Bynes did well. Elijah Kelley as Seaweed was everything!

The movie tackled segregation, weight shaming, interracial love and just love of all kinds. It’s not just a feel good musical, it teaches you as well as entertaining you.

My favourite songs are: Without Love, The New Girl In Town and Run and Tell That.

Lion King 

So this is a Disney movie I know but I consider it a musical as well. From previous lists you know that Lion King is one of my all time favourite movies. I’ve loved it since I was a little girl and I will carry on loving it until I die.

The songs in this movie are great. I love them all, from the beginning song, to Scar’s song to Hakuna Matata. I love them all.

This is another movie I knew all the words to, not just the songs but the dialogue too. I would sing along and act along. Honestly, if anyone is looking for a voice actress I’m ready, I’ve been training.

My favourite songs from the movie are: I Just Can’t Wait to be King!, Be Prepared, Can You Feel The Love Tonight? and Circle of Life. I even love Lion King 2 but I’ll save that for another post.

Annie (1999) 

I know it was originally a stage production and that there are other movie versions that people prefer but this is my personal favourite Annie, the 1999 Disney version.

My mom got me this movie and I loved it, I honestly didn’t know as a kid that there was another earlier movie Annie. But then I found out and watch the original movie version and it was good but I didn’t love it more than the 1999 version.

I used to set up my living room as an orphanage and dance and sing along to the movie. Hmm there’s a theme forming here. Someone should cast me to be in a musical.

It was such a feel good movie, the songs even when sad allowed you to sing along and belt away the sadness; to get it all out! It was therapeutic.

I really got attached to Annie and her journey, I was rooting for her and I loved how humble and earnest she was and yet how tough she was too. I loved Mr. Warbucks as he changed through out the movie, warming up and opening his heart to love and family.

Kathy Bates as Miss Hannigan was genius casting. (Also did anyone notice how Kathy Bates and Victor Garber were in this movie together and they were in the Titanic together? A minor point but I loved it when I noticed).

I love everything about this movie, it’s not just one of my favourite musicals but one of my favourite movies of all time.

My favourite songs are: Tomorrow, It’s A Hard Knock Life, You’re Never Fully Dressed Without A Smile, I Don’t Need Anything But You, Little Girls, Easy Street and Maybe (Reprise).

The Sound of Music

This one is a family favourite. For some reason we always tended to watch this one during the Christmas season. It was like it was our Christmas movie even though we don’t celebrate Christmas.

It’s a great movie but you need to clear an evening for it. It’s an epic musical, Julie Andrews at her finest.

The musical is based on the real Von Trapp family although some details were changed. It’s a harrowing story, about love, values, morals, family and the power of music.

I loved the bond the children shared with Maria and how Maria fell in love with the Captain. It was a beautiful story really and knowing most of it was real made it that much better.

I wonder where the descendants of the Von Trapp family are now, they emigrated to America in real life, to escape the Nazi’s, so I’m guessing they’re still in America.

My favourite songs are: Do-Re-Mi, Edelweiss, My Favourite Things, The Lonely Goatherd, Sixteen Going on Seventeen and So Long, Farewell.

Grease

This movie is the best! One of my favourite decades is the 50’s. It was a bumping time. I mean the way they used to dance was awesome! That and Dirty Dancing, I wish I could dance like that. Just have myself swung around, it looks fun!

There are many things I like about this musical. First the journey Danny and Sandy go on. Danny showed a vulnerable side to Sandy and he genuinely fell for her but he was embarrassed to show that in front of his friends when he was meant to be the cool one. Sandy, on the other hand, was set in her ways and wasn’t as liberal as Rizzo and the Pink Ladies which was fine but at some point she decides she wants a change. Both Danny and Sandy compromise to meet each other half way by the end of the movie. Danny finally claims her and is comfortable showing his vulnerable side. And Sandy still has her boundaries but she lets loose more and has fun more towards the end.

I love the change in Rizzo and Kenickie as well. They matured as the movie progressed and Rizzo addressed issues that women who were openly sexual had to deal with, especially in those times (although sometimes it seems like times haven’t changed). Their love for each other grew and they became more honest about their feelings.

Plus it’s really about the journey you take to find yourself and your place in the world, in my opinion. It’s about being confident enough to be yourself and to like who like or what you like without worrying about what others think.

My favourite songs are: Grease is the Word, Grease Lightning, Look at Me, I’m Sandra Dee, Summer Nights and You’re the One That I Want.

West Side Story

A version of Romeo and Juliet that I watched in Music class. I don’t like Romeo and Juliet for various reasons but I liked this musical.

It tackles race relations in America and how love can bridge that gap. Or at least how love tries to.

Really love has no boundaries, and that’s what movies like this showed. It’s us who put boundaries on people and tell them who they can and can’t love.

I feel it’s also about forgiveness. The Jets and the Sharks have hate for each other that is deep and triggers the problems in the movie. No one is innocent, not even Tony or Bernardo.

However I used to be low key mad that Maria still wanted to be with Tony after he killed her brother. Like girl can you not wait? Give yourself time to grieve. I know you’re forgiving but dang bury your brother first. I never understood that. Same goes for Tony, he’d lost a friend and he’d killed someone in retaliation, he had some rage and grief that he needed to sort out first.

The police and Doc did try to stop the violence and Anita in the beginning. To be honest it’s hard to change people’s hearts especially when the issues run deep and this movie/musical showed that. It can be done but it takes work.

My favourite songs: America and I Feel Pretty.

So that’s my list, what are your favourite musicals? Comment below!

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