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Top 10 High School Musicals

Written by: Editorial Staff

April 3, 2011
Filed Under Education, Music 


A list of the top ten high school musicalsContributed by Rosemary O’Brien, Top 10 Guru

High School drama clubs are getting better than ever.

With all of the script choices available, and a few shows developed by those creative folks at Disney, going to see your niece in her high school production can actually be a fun night out!

Here are 10 high school musicals that will have you dancing in the aisles.

10. You’re a Good Man, Charlie Brown! (1967)

Charlie Brown is one of the top ten high school musicals

This is a delightfully simple musical that can be easily adapted to a small or a large cast. Maybe that is the reason it is still produced in American schools. The production I just saw had about 25 chorus members that brightened the stage each time they appeared to sing or act as extras in the scene. Costumes are easy because the cast can customize t-shirts or pick a few schools and choose school team gear to dress the stage.

9. Little Shop of Horrors (1950)

Little Shop of Horrors is one of the top ten high school musicals

The main character is a monstrous plant that tries to take over the world. Its operator, and the voice of the main character, is revealed during curtain calls whenit comes forward from the puppet. The costumes can seem imtimidating, but with a little help from a Halloween costume store, it’s easy to pull off in style.

8. Bye, Bye Birdie (1960)

Bye bye Birdie is one of the top ten high school musicals

This is a classic story of an Elvis-type rock star who is drafted into the Army. His army of fans, adoring adolescent girls, go wild for him during a TV show appearance in their home town. This show has nothing to do with birds. The title is derived from the rock star’s name which is Conrad Birdie.

7. Disney’s Beauty and the Beast (1993)

Beauty and the Beast is one of the top ten high school musicals

This an example of the types of stories Disney does best. A classic love story about a girl who looks past appearances and falls in love with a beast. The musical is based on the animated film that was nominated for an Oscar and is filled with music for little people and adults alike.

6. Into the Woods (1987)

Into the Woods is one of the top ten high school musicals

Stephen Sondheim’s musical is pure genius, but a very difficult choice for the novice singer. Even the most trained vocalist is challenged by the syncopation and varied time signature. It takes all of the most popular fairy tales and presents the audience with its own conclusions about their meaning.

5. Seussical: The Musical (2000)

Seussical is one of the top ten high school musicals

Who doesn’t like Dr. Seuss! Put his work into a musical and you have a sure hit for the high school musical crowd. I saw this last year for the first time and found it great fun even though I’m, well, let’s just say I am a little older than five.

4. Guys and Dolls (1950)

Guys and Dolls is one of the top ten high school musicals

A classic love story featuring two groups from different sides of town. The fun starts when a gambler falls in love with an uptight good-two-shoes. If your mom ever sang, “A Bushel and a Peck” to you, you will be right at home watching this one.

3. Grease (1972)

Grease is one of the top ten high school musicals

Another story about the good girl and the bad boy, but this time things change. The good girl decides to become a bad girl in order to get the boy. In the end, she makes him and all of the bad kids good! Good prevails in this fun romp through the 1950’s.

2. Once Upon a Mattress (1959)

Once Upon a Mattress is one of the top ten high school musicals

An overbearing queen wants to control her son’s life by forbidding him to marry anyone who is not sensitive enough for her son. She places a pea under the young ladies to be tested and one, Winifred, passes the test. They marry and everyone lives happily ever after.

1. Disney’s High School Musical (2006)

High School Musical is one of the top ten high school musicals

This was very popular when it was in the movie theaters and equally as popular when it his the high school musicals circuit. With its cast of many, it was a popular choice for a school that required a show with a large and versatile cast. Check out the original High School Musical on video to get a jump on the story line if you do not have not already seen in a zillion times with your kids.

With high school musicals being such a big money-maker during the spring, these top 10 high school musicals should make it easy to choose the right one for your high school drama club. Many have withstood the test of time, and others are new classics to the scene. Whether you have a small cast or a cast of thousands, you are sure to find something to produce with your high school drama club this spring.

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