theater The Best Female Broadway Stars of the 21st Century  

Buster McDermott
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List Rules Vote up the best actresses who have performed on Broadway since 2000.

Female performers have taken Broadway by storm in the 21st century, with many talented women drawing audiences night after night. Many can be seen in the most popular Broadway shows, such as Wicked, while others are in smaller productions, but their talent has earned all of them a place on this list of the most amazing 21st century female Broadway stars.

When it comes to the best Broadway stars of the 21st century - male or female - can anyone forget Sutton Foster? Foster is a true triple threat, and both audiences and awards committees acknowledge her as such. As of 2014, she’d already captured two Tony Awards: Best Performance by a Leading Actress in a Musical for both Thoroughly Modern Millie and Anything Goes.

A few of the best female Broadway performers of the 21st century are just beginning their careers, but they will be sure not to disappoint audiences in the future. Leighton Meester, who shot to fame on the show “Gossip Girl,” will make her Broadway debut in 2014, starring in a production of Of Mice and Men.

On this list you’ll find the best female stars Broadway has to offer in the 21st century. Although a few of their names might be unfamiliar, you’re sure to hear about them in the coming years. Cast your votes below for the best 21st century female Broadway stars.

list ordered by

1
345 118
Kristin Chenoweth is listed (or ranked) 1 on the list The Best Female Broadway Stars of the 21st Century
Wicked_ForGood added Kristin Chenoweth age 49 - Originated role of Glinda in Wicked.

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2
412 179
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Idina Menzel age 46 - Originated the role of Maureen in Rent.

3
278 115
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Sutton Foster age 42 - Won a Tony Award for her performance in Thoroughly Modern Millie.

4
243 106
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Audra McDonald age 47 - Recipient of five Tony Awards.

5
99 24
Phillipa Soo is listed (or ranked) 5 on the list The Best Female Broadway Stars of the 21st Century
typoqueen added Phillipa Soo

6
100 26
Renée Elise Goldsberry is listed (or ranked) 6 on the list The Best Female Broadway Stars of the 21st Century
typoqueen added Renée Elise Goldsberry age 46

7
93 22
Lea Salonga is listed (or ranked) 7 on the list The Best Female Broadway Stars of the 21st Century
Guian Carlo C. Labo added Lea Salonga age 46

8
212 102
Patti LuPone is listed (or ranked) 8 on the list The Best Female Broadway Stars of the 21st Century
MegzW added Patti LuPone age 68 - Recipient of two Tony Awards, for Evita and Gypsy

9
106 40
Laura Osnes is listed (or ranked) 9 on the list The Best Female Broadway Stars of the 21st Century
jessie-gurniak added Laura Osnes age 32 - Won the revival cast role of Sandy in Grease from TV show You're The One That I Want. Original Bonnie in Bonnie & Clyde. Hope in Anything Goes revival. Ella in Cinderella.

10
148 72
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Kelli O'Hara age 41 - Has received four Tony Award nominations in her career.

11
171 100
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Megan Hilty age 36 - Played Glinda in the ever-popular Wicked.

12
171 97
Sierra Boggess is listed (or ranked) 12 on the list The Best Female Broadway Stars of the 21st Century
MegzW added Sierra Boggess age 35

13
90 43
Jessie Mueller is listed (or ranked) 13 on the list The Best Female Broadway Stars of the 21st Century
jessie-gurniak added Jessie Mueller age 32 - Original cast of Beautiful: the Carole King Musical. Revival of On a Clear Day You Can See Forever. Upcoming production of Waitress,

14
123 70
Stephanie J. Block is listed (or ranked) 14 on the list The Best Female Broadway Stars of the 21st Century
MegzW added Stephanie J. Block age 45

15
146 95
Anna Kendrick is listed (or ranked) 15 on the list The Best Female Broadway Stars of the 21st Century
jessie-gurniak added Anna Kendrick age 32 - A Little Night Music at the New York City Opera

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16
57 21
Jasmine Cephas Jones is listed (or ranked) 16 on the list The Best Female Broadway Stars of the 21st Century
typoqueen added Jasmine Cephas Jones

17
190 143
Kerry Ellis is listed (or ranked) 17 on the list The Best Female Broadway Stars of the 21st Century
MariaParhomenko added Kerry Ellis age 38 - Well-known for her lead roles in Wicked, Oliver!, Les Misérables.

18
68 32
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jessie-gurniak added Kara Lindsay Original Katherine in Newsies. Glinda in Wicked in December 2014

19
80 48
Annaleigh Ashford is listed (or ranked) 19 on the list The Best Female Broadway Stars of the 21st Century
jessie-gurniak added Annaleigh Ashford age 32 - Wicked, Legally Blonde, Dogfight, Kinky Boots, Hair, You Can't Take it With You, Sylvia

20
116 77
Lea Michele is listed (or ranked) 20 on the list The Best Female Broadway Stars of the 21st Century
jessie-gurniak added Lea Michele age 31 - Originated the role of Wendla in Spring Awakening

21
38 7
Bernadette Peters is listed (or ranked) 21 on the list The Best Female Broadway Stars of the 21st Century
Shelley Anne Thompson added Bernadette Peters age 69

22
75 46
Krysta Rodriguez is listed (or ranked) 22 on the list The Best Female Broadway Stars of the 21st Century
jessie-gurniak added Krysta Rodriguez age 33 - Original cast in The Addams Family and First Date

23
109 80
Ranker Video
Bebe Neuwirth age 59 - Remembered for playing Nickie in a revival of Sweet Charity.

24
62 40
Laura Bell Bundy is listed (or ranked) 24 on the list The Best Female Broadway Stars of the 21st Century
jessie-gurniak added Laura Bell Bundy age 36 - Amber in Hairspray. Elle Woods in Legally Blonde

25
90 71
Shoshana Bean is listed (or ranked) 25 on the list The Best Female Broadway Stars of the 21st Century
Wicked_ForGood added Shoshana Bean age 40

26
86 68
Eden Espinosa is listed (or ranked) 26 on the list The Best Female Broadway Stars of the 21st Century
Wicked_ForGood added Eden Espinosa age 39

27
61 42
Christine Ebersole is listed (or ranked) 27 on the list The Best Female Broadway Stars of the 21st Century
nretherford added Christine Ebersole age 64

28
29 13
Cynthia Erivo is listed (or ranked) 28 on the list The Best Female Broadway Stars of the 21st Century
typoqueen added Cynthia Erivo

29
54 39
Lindsay Mendez is listed (or ranked) 29 on the list The Best Female Broadway Stars of the 21st Century
jessie-gurniak added Lindsay Mendez age 32 - Dogfight, Wicked, Grease, Everyday Rapture

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30
111 101
Willemijn Verkaik is listed (or ranked) 30 on the list The Best Female Broadway Stars of the 21st Century
Wicked_ForGood added Willemijn Verkaik age 42

31
57 47
Ranker Video
Anika Noni Rose age 45 - Remembered for her performance as Emmie in Caroline, or Change.

32
63 54
Emma Stone is listed (or ranked) 32 on the list The Best Female Broadway Stars of the 21st Century
jessie-gurniak added Emma Stone Replaced Michelle Williams as Sally in Cabaret.

33
77 75
Patina Miller is listed (or ranked) 33 on the list The Best Female Broadway Stars of the 21st Century
PaulJ.Hernandez added Patina Miller age 33

34
22 14
Judy Kuhn is listed (or ranked) 34 on the list The Best Female Broadway Stars of the 21st Century
typoqueen added Judy Kuhn age 59

35
22 15
Barrett Wilbert Weed is listed (or ranked) 35 on the list The Best Female Broadway Stars of the 21st Century
typoqueen added Barrett Wilbert Weed

36
61 60
Ranker Video
Tyne Daly age 71 - Most recently performed in Mothers and Sons.

37
16 11
Laura Michelle Kelly is listed (or ranked) 37 on the list The Best Female Broadway Stars of the 21st Century
typoqueen added Laura Michelle Kelly age 36

38
52 56
Ranker Video
Heather Headley age 43 - Originated the role of Nala in the The Lion King on Broadway.

39
16 13
Katie Rose Clarke is listed (or ranked) 39 on the list The Best Female Broadway Stars of the 21st Century
typoqueen added Katie Rose Clarke age 33

40
16 14
Liz Callaway is listed (or ranked) 40 on the list The Best Female Broadway Stars of the 21st Century
typoqueen added Liz Callaway age 56

41
51 53
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Andrea Martin age 70 - Won a Tony Award for her work in My Favorite Year.

42
10 8
Rachel Tucker is listed (or ranked) 42 on the list The Best Female Broadway Stars of the 21st Century
typoqueen added Rachel Tucker age 36

43
45 48
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21olijas added Ruthie Henshall age 50 - Debut Chicago 2001

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44
41 48
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Vanessa L. Williams age 54 - Debuted in 1994 in Kiss of the Spider Woman.

45
14 14
Kerry Butler is listed (or ranked) 45 on the list The Best Female Broadway Stars of the 21st Century
typoqueen added Kerry Butler age 46

46
13 13
Alyssa Fox is listed (or ranked) 46 on the list The Best Female Broadway Stars of the 21st Century
typoqueen added Alyssa Fox

47
11 11
Caissie Levy is listed (or ranked) 47 on the list The Best Female Broadway Stars of the 21st Century
typoqueen added Caissie Levy age 36

48
25 31
Teal Wicks is listed (or ranked) 48 on the list The Best Female Broadway Stars of the 21st Century
jessie-gurniak added Teal Wicks age 35 - Wicked, Jekyll & Hyde, Finding Neverland

49
14 15
Alli Mauzey is listed (or ranked) 49 on the list The Best Female Broadway Stars of the 21st Century
typoqueen added Alli Mauzey

50
33 41
Ranker Video
Marisa Tomei age 53 - Acclaimed for her performance in The Realistic Joneses.