Ten of the best musicals scheduled to tour in 2021
Touring March 12 to November 20
Set amidst the razzle-dazzle decadence of the 1920s, Chicago is the story of Roxie Hart, a housewife and nightclub dancer who murders her on-the-side lover after he threatens to walk out on her. Desperate to avoid conviction, she dupes the public, the media and her rival cellmate, Velma Kelly, by hiring Chicago’s slickest criminal lawyer to transform her malicious crime into a barrage of sensational headlines, the likes of which might just as easily be ripped from today’s tabloids.
Created by the musical theatre talents of John Kander, Fred Ebb and legendary choreographer Bob Fosse, Chicago the musical’s sexy, sassy score includes the show-stopping songs Razzle Dazzle, Cell Block Tango, and All That Jazz. Winner of six Tony Awards, two Olivier Awards and a Grammy, Chicago is the longest-running American musical in Broadway and West End history. Since it opened in New York in 1996, Chicago has played in 36 countries worldwide, and been performed in English, Dutch, German, Swedish, Spanish, Portuguese, Russian, Italian, French, Danish, Japanese and Korean. Worldwide it has been seen by an estimated 33 million people, grossed over $1.7 billion has played over 32,500 performances. Chicago the musical, which is based on the play by Maurine Dallas Watkins, has a book by Fred Ebb and Bob Fosse, music by John Kander and lyrics by Fred Ebb. The 1996 Broadway revival of Chicago was choreographed by Ann Reinking in the style of Bob Fosse, directed by Walter Bobbie, and produced by Barry and Fran Weissler.
Touring January 11 to July 24
Everybody Cut Loose when the explosive rock ’n’ roll musical Footloose burst onto the stage in 2016. The tour proved so popular that it is back in 2021. Based on the 1980s riveting screen sensation, which took the world by storm with its youthful spirit, dazzling dance and electrifying music, Footloose tells the story of city boy Ren who has to move to a rural backwater in America where dancing is banned. All hell breaks out as Ren breaks loose and soon has the whole town up on its feet.
3 DOLLY PARTON’S 9 TO 5 THE MUSICAL
Touring January 12 to June 5
9 to 5 the Musical tells the story of Doralee, Violet and Judy - three workmates pushed to boiling point by their sexist and egotistical boss. Concocting a plan to kidnap and turn the tables on their despicable supervisor, will the women manage to reform their office - or will events unravel when the CEO pays an unexpected visit? The 9 to 5 UK Tour features a book by Patricia Resnick, the classic film’s original screenwriter, and an original Oscar, Grammy and Tony award-nominated score by multi-Grammy Award winner, country legend and pop icon Dolly Parton
4 THE ADDAMS FAMILY
Touring January 26 to July 10
Wednesday Addams, the ultimate princess of darkness, has grown up and has a shocking secret that only Gomez knows; she’s fallen in love with a sweet, smart young man from a respectable family! Now, Gomez Addams must do something he’s never done before - keep a secret from his beloved wife, Morticia. Everything will change for the whole family on a fateful night they host a dinner for Wednesday’s “normal” boyfriend and his parents. All the usual clan are present - Uncle Fester, Lurch, Pugsley et al. The 2021 tour of The Addams Family will see Cameron Blakely and Samantha Womack reprise their roles as Gomez and Morticia Addams.
Touring January 11 to May 29
It’s Baltimore 1962, where Tracy Turnblad, a big girl with big hair and an even bigger heart, is on a mission to follow her dreams and dance her way onto national TV. Tracy’s audition makes her a local star and soon she is using her new-found fame to fight for equality, bagging local heartthrob Link Larkin along the way. Hairspray is a musical based on the 1988 film of the same name by cult filmmaker John Waters and starring Divine and Ricki Lake. Hairspray originally opened to rave reviews on Broadway in 2002 and subsequently won eight Tony Awards. The production opened in London at the Shaftesbury Theatre in 2007 and won the Laurence Olivier Award for Best New Musical, Best Actor in a Musical, Best Actress in a Musical and Best Performance in a Supporting Role.
6 MY BEST FRIEND’S WEDDING
Touring September 20 to November 29
My Best Friend’s Wedding is based on the wickedly funny film of the same name and features some of the most iconic pop anthems ever written by the legendary Burt Bacharach and Hal David, including I’ll Never Fall in Love Again, I Just Don’t Know What To Do With Myself, Walk on By, I Say A Little Prayer and What’s New Pussycat. Fiery food critic Julianne Potter has always turned her nose up at romance. It’s the reason she broke up with her sweetheart Michael O’Neal. When she hears he’s about to be married, she vows to win him back for good, but with perfect Kimmy in the way, it’s not as easy as she first thought. Alexandra Burke is to star as Julianne Potter.
7 ROCK OF AGES
Touring May 6 to August 28
It’s Los Angeles at a time where the dreams are as big as the hair and where those self-same dreams can come true. Rock Of Ages features 25 classic rock anthems including We Built This City, The Final Countdown, Here I Go Again, Can’t Fight this Feeling and I Want To Know What Love Is, played live on stage by the Rock Of Ages band.
8 WAITRESS THE MUSICAL
Touring May 1 2021 to April 2 2022
Waitress tells the story of Jenna, an expert pie maker in a small town, who dreams of a way out of her loveless marriage. A baking contest in a nearby county and the town’s new doctor may offer her a chance at a new life, while her fellow waitresses offer their own recipes to happiness. But Jenna must find the courage and strength within herself to rebuild her life.This American musical celebrates friendship, motherhood, and the magic of a well-made pie.
Touring January 22 to July 27
Dust off your leather jackets, pull on your bobby-socks and take a trip to a simpler time, as bad-boy Danny and the girl next door Sandy fall in love in one of the best-loved shows in musical history.
10 SINGIN’ IN THE RAIN
Touring January 21 to September 5
The toe-tapping classic returns in this Olivier Award-winning production.
* This article is part of The Show Must Go On, JPIMedia's campaign to support live entertainment venues