Culture

The Best Broadway Plays of the 2000s

List Rules
Theatre productions that played on Broadway between 2000 and 2009

What are the best Broadway plays from the 2000s? This list has been ranked by theater lovers to determine the best shows on Broadway that opened in the 2000s, a decade of redefinition for theatrical plays that moved toward commercial success and box office numbers. Though many critics might argue that Broadway shows are dying, the 2000s saw Broadway become more of a tourist attraction, rather than a creative outlet as it once was during the golden era of Broadway. However, there were still many popular, great plays on Broadway in the 2000s, but which were the best?

The 2000s saw Broadway favor corporate sponsorships over sole producers, leading to productions of a grand scale. Musical Broadway dominated the 2000s with shows such as Avenue Q and Spring Awakening, but non-musical Broadway plays including August: Osage County, saw success on and off the stage. The dark comedy opened in 2007 and ran for over 600 performances, winning a host of Tony Awards as well as critical acclaim. 

The decade also saw an emergence of original Broadway plays turning toward film adaptations and the rise or revivals from Broadway's golden era. Like August: Osage County, other plays including Doubt: A Parable were turned into films, starring celebrities such as Meryl Streep and Phillip Seymour Hoffman. Could film adaptations bring more attention and interest to their Broadway counterparts?  

What are the top plays on Broadway from the 2000s? What are the best non-musical Broadway shows of the 2000s? Cast your votes below for the best Broadway plays that opened in the 2000s.
Photo:
list ordered by
  • The 39 Steps is a parody adapted from the 1915 novel by John Buchan and the 1935 film by Alfred Hitchcock. The original concept and production of a four-actor version of the story was by Simon Corble ...more
  • War Horse is a play based on the book of the same name by children's writer Michael Morpurgo, adapted for stage by Nick Stafford. Originally Morpurgo thought "they must be mad" to try to make a play ...more
  • August: Osage County is a comedy-drama play by Tracy Letts. It was the recipient of the 2008 Pulitzer Prize for Drama. The play premiered at the Steppenwolf Theatre in Chicago on June 28, 2007, and ...more
  • The History Boys is a play by British playwright Alan Bennett. The play premiered at the Royal National Theatre in London on 18 May 2004. Its Broadway debut was on 23 April 2006 at the Broadhurst ...more
  • Twelve Angry Men is a play by Reginald Rose adapted from his 1954 teleplay of the same title for the CBS Studio One anthology television series. Staged in a 1964 London production, the Broadway debut ...more
  • The Graduate
    6

    The Graduate

  • Doubt, A Parable is a 2004 play by John Patrick Shanley. Originally staged off-Broadway at the Manhattan Theatre Club on November 23, 2004, the production transferred to the Walter Kerr Theatre on ...more
  • The Pillowman is a 2003 play by Irish playwright Martin McDonagh. It received its first public reading in an early version at the Finborough Theatre, London, in 1995. It tells the tale of Katurian, a ...more
  • Take Me Out
    9

    Take Me Out

  • Proof
    10

    Proof

  • The Goat, or Who Is Sylvia?, a one-act play written by Edward Albee, premiered on Broadway at the John Golden Theatre on 10 March 2002 where it ran for 309 performances. The European Premiere take ...more
  • Metamorphoses is a play by the American playwright and director Mary Zimmerman, adapted from the classic Ovid poem Metamorphoses. The play premiered in 1996 as Six Myths at Northwestern University ...more
  • Other Desert Cities
    13

    Other Desert Cities

  • Frankie and Johnny in the Clair de Lune is a two-character play by Terrence McNally that was first performed off-Broadway in 1987.
  • Venus in Fur
    15

    Venus in Fur

  • Lombardi
    16

    Lombardi

  • Golda's Balcony
    17

    Golda's Balcony

  • Daisy Werthan (Jessica Tandy), an elderly Jewish widow living in Atlanta, is determined to maintain her independence. However, when she crashes her car, her son, Boolie (Dan Aykroyd), arranges for ...more
  • I Am My Own Wife
    19

    I Am My Own Wife

  • Copenhagen is a play by Michael Frayn, based on an event that occurred in Copenhagen in 1941, a meeting between the physicists Niels Bohr and Werner Heisenberg. It premiered in London in 1998 at the ...more
  • Race
    21
    Race is a play by David Mamet that premiered on Broadway in December 2009. Mamet has stated that the intended "theme is race and the lies we tell each other on the subject."
  • Vanya and Sonia and Masha and Spike
    22

    Vanya and Sonia and Masha and Spike

  • The Dinner Party
    23

    The Dinner Party

  • God of Carnage (originally in French Le Dieu du carnage) is a play by Yasmina Reza. It is about two sets of parents, one of whose child has hurt the other at a public park. They agree to meet to ...more
  • November is a play written by David Mamet which premiered on Broadway in 2008.