Culture

The Best Broadway Musicals of the 90s 

Buster McDermott
Updated October 13, 2018 17.2k votes 1.7k voters 56k views 42 items

From Chicago to The Lion King, the '90s saw a number of hit musicals that were popular with theater audiences. While going to the theater has always been (and still is) considered to be pretty high-brow, many 1990s musicals introduced fun, accessible elements like rock music and youthful themes that appealed to a younger generation. Think back– which '90s musicals do you think take the cake for being the best of the decade? This list has been ranked by hundreds of theater fans like you, so don't let them down! Vote for your choices of the best 1990s Broadway musicals. 

By the '90s, musical theater began fading away into obscurity. Though Broadway had once reigned supreme, it was now struggling to remain relevant amidst rapidly changing times, combined with rising ticket costs and low attendance. Still, the 1990s saw its fair share of Broadway hits that stuck out among the loyal theater fans. The shows were modernized and often tackled weighty topics such as in the successful show, Rent, a rock musical about a group of young artists in New York dealing with the realities of HIV/AIDS. Though the show started off-Broadway, it eventually found its place and gained critical acclaim, winning a Tony Award for Best Musical. Rent would continue on Broadway for 12 years, until 2008, after more than 5,000 performances.  

The '90s was also a time of the "corporate musical," elaborate stage efforts produced with a massive amount of money from corporate sponsorship in order to win over the box office. Such shows included Beauty and the Beast and The Lion King. Though the shows were much loved by audiences, the real magic of musical theater through experimentation, emotion, and true talent was lost to impressive, yet sterile, shows.

What are the top Broadway musicals from the 1990s? But what were the most popular Broadway musicals of the '90s? Cast your votes below and see how your fellow theater fans voted!
list ordered by
1
Rent is listed (or ranked) 1 on the list The Best Broadway Musicals of the 90s
Jonathan Larson
2
The Lion King is listed (or ranked) 2 on the list The Best Broadway Musicals of the 90s
Mark Mancina , Elton John , Jay Rifkin
3
Chicago is listed (or ranked) 3 on the list The Best Broadway Musicals of the 90s
Bob Fosse , Fred Ebb , John Kander
4
Beauty and the Beast is listed (or ranked) 4 on the list The Best Broadway Musicals of the 90s
Alan Menken , Linda Woolverton , Howard Ashman
5
Miss Saigon is listed (or ranked) 5 on the list The Best Broadway Musicals of the 90s
Richard Maltby, Jr. , Claude-Michel Schönberg
6
Victor/Victoria is listed (or ranked) 6 on the list The Best Broadway Musicals of the 90s
Blake Edwards , Frank Wildhorn , Leslie Bricusse
7
Ragtime is listed (or ranked) 7 on the list The Best Broadway Musicals of the 90s
Terrence McNally , Stephen Flaherty , Lynn Ahrens
8
Grease is listed (or ranked) 8 on the list The Best Broadway Musicals of the 90s
RichardBeecher added Warren Casey , Jim Jacobs
9
Jekyll & Hyde is listed (or ranked) 9 on the list The Best Broadway Musicals of the 90s
Frank Wildhorn , Leslie Bricusse , Steve Cuden
10
The Secret Garden is listed (or ranked) 10 on the list The Best Broadway Musicals of the 90s
Marsha Norman , Lucy Simon
11
Sunset Boulevard is listed (or ranked) 11 on the list The Best Broadway Musicals of the 90s
Christopher Hampton , Don Black , Andrew Lloyd Webber
12
Footloose is listed (or ranked) 12 on the list The Best Broadway Musicals of the 90s
Eric Carmen , Sammy Hagar , Tom Snow
13
Once on This Island is listed (or ranked) 13 on the list The Best Broadway Musicals of the 90s
Stephen Flaherty , Lynn Ahrens
14
Falsettos is listed (or ranked) 14 on the list The Best Broadway Musicals of the 90s
James Lapine , William Finn
15
Fosse is listed (or ranked) 15 on the list The Best Broadway Musicals of the 90s
Bob Fosse , Fred Ebb
16
Parade is listed (or ranked) 16 on the list The Best Broadway Musicals of the 90s
Jason Robert Brown , Alfred Uhry
17
The Who's Tommy is listed (or ranked) 17 on the list The Best Broadway Musicals of the 90s
Des McAnuff , Pete Townshend
18
Titanic is listed (or ranked) 18 on the list The Best Broadway Musicals of the 90s
ian-reynolds added Maury Yeston and Peter Stone
Maury Yeston and Peter Stone
19
City of Angels is listed (or ranked) 19 on the list The Best Broadway Musicals of the 90s
David Zippel , Larry Gelbart , Cy Coleman
20
Crazy for You is listed (or ranked) 20 on the list The Best Broadway Musicals of the 90s
George Gershwin , Ira Gershwin , Ken Ludwig
21
The Scarlet Pimpernel is listed (or ranked) 21 on the list The Best Broadway Musicals of the 90s
Nan Knighton , Frank Wildhorn
22
Saturday Night Fever is listed (or ranked) 22 on the list The Best Broadway Musicals of the 90s
Nan Knighton
23
Blood Brothers is listed (or ranked) 23 on the list The Best Broadway Musicals of the 90s
Willy Russell
24
Scrooge is listed (or ranked) 24 on the list The Best Broadway Musicals of the 90s
taylor-griego added Leslie Bricusse
25
Passion is listed (or ranked) 25 on the list The Best Broadway Musicals of the 90s
James Lapine , Stephen Sondheim