From one-woman show ANN about the famed Texas governor Ann Richards to Irving Berlin's Holiday Inn, who wants to join us for a matinee?

By Perri Ormont Blumberg
May 13, 2020
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There's no substitute for seeing a live show—the squeeze of your friend's sweaty palm when the house lights first go down, the stage actor's emotions making a Freudian leap into every cell of your skin, the oneness of a standing ovation as strangers are transformed into a collective soul. There is no substitute. 

But now, the lights on Broadway are dimmed through at least September 6th to keep actors and theater-goers alike safe amid the coronavirus crisis. Like museums, restaurants, shops, schools, we mourn for another indirect casualty of this merciless virus.

They say where there is light, there is hope. These days, the lights on 42nd street are a fluorescent memory, but there is still hope. Hope in the performers who have thrown on their tap shoes, their top hats, their brave smiles to entertain us through an Instagram post. Hope in the coronavirus emergency relief efforts to support entertainers from organizations like the Actors Fund of America. Hope in the Sullivan County farm kid who streams Footloose for the first time, during these strange times, and his tractor boots remain forever retired, his life forever changed.

And then, there are shows. Oh, are there shows. Indeed, streaming performances are no replacement for a seat in the theater, but thanks to BroadwayHD— a streaming platform that costs $8.99 per month, and there's also the option of a seven-day free trial—you can still be teleported to the stages around the world without leaving your home. These days, we're looking for as many mood boosts as we can get. Give us as much music, joy, and beauty as possible. Load us high with chuckles and grace. Who's with us? Below, the best feel-good Broadway musicals we're streaming right now until we can clasp our best friend's sweaty palm once again.

Fame - Live from the West End

Based on the eponymous 1980 film, you'll be glued to your seat for the duration of this show, filmed during its West End run in London earlier this year, which received two London theater, ahem, theatre, Olivier Awards nominations. The story chronicles students of New York’s School for the Performing Arts as they navigate the highs and lows of life.

Watch it on BroadwayHD here.

ANN

This one-woman show documenting the life of Ann Richards, the famous governor of Texas, doesn't have a dull moment. Get to know the firecracker politician, with a fine balance of pathos and humor throughout.

Watch it on BroadwayHD here.

Irving Berlin's Holiday Inn

Based on the 1942 movie of the same name, you'll love composer Irving Berlin's timeless songs that are just as resonant in recent years in the 2017 Broadway revival of the iconic show. So what happens when performer Jim ditches NYC to retreat to his farmhouse in Connecticut? You'll have to click play to find out.

Watch it on BroadwayHD here.

Kinky Boots

It's the winner of every major "Best Musical Award" for good reason. Inspired by real events, get drawn into the world of Charlie, a factory owner working tirelessly to save his family business, and Lola, an entertainer who will long etch herself into your memory. With stilettos, friendship, and plenty of laughs, get ready for an incredible two-hour performance.

Watch it on BroadwayHD here.

She Loves Me

Watch perfume clerks at odds in this must-see comedy that has romance, fun, and no shortage of catchy songs. Originally debuted in 1963, the 2016 Broadway version with Laura Benanti, Zachary Levi, and Jane Krakowski is a heck of a revival.

Watch it on BroadwayHD here.

42nd Street

You'll fall in love with Peggy Sawyer as she arrives off the bus from small-town America into New York City and joins the choral ensemble on a Broadway show. Will she rise to fame? You can't hit pause until you see how the captivating tale unfolds.

Watch it on BroadwayHD here.