With New York extending its stay at home orders for non-essential workers until at least May 15, the city that never sleeps is a lot quieter these days, even in the otherwise always bustling Times Square. Though the lights on Broadway are still as bright as ever, all the theaters that line the streets remain empty and will for the foreseeable future, with all shows canceled until at least June 7.
Thankfully, fans of musical theater can enjoy some of their favorite shows at home with a few hit Broadway shows and other theater content streaming online right now. Here is a list of recordings of contemporary and classic Broadway musicals, as well as the great content the Actors Fund is putting out, all of which you can see online right now.
BroadwayHD (subscription with free trial)
BroadwayHD.com has a catalog of hundreds of recorded live performances of beloved musicals and plays. The subscription is $8.99 a month with a 7-day free trial. While the offering is always changing, highlights from the catalog available now include:
- 42nd Street
- An American in Paris
- Bye Bye Birdie
- Jesus Christ Superstar
- Joseph and the Amazing Technicolor Dreamcoat
- Kinky Boots
- Miss Saigon
- Phantom of the Opera
Aside from film adaptations of stage musicals, there are several live recordings of Broadway shows on Netflix, including:
- Oh Hello on Broadway
- Springsteen on Broadway
- Shrek: The Musical
Of the major streaming platforms, Prime's Broadway catalog is the most impressive, and beyond what's available on subscription, there are several video recordings of live performances you can rent or purchase, such as:
- Rent: Recorded Live on Broadway
- Phantom of the Opera
- The SpongeBob Musical: Live on Stage!
- Newsies: The Broadway Musical
- Into the Woods
- Sweeney Todd
Most public television stations are streaming versions of live performances to view through the PBS Great Performances series. Recent offerings available right now include Kinky Boots, The Public Theater / Shakespeare in the Park production of Much Ado About Nothing, and Paula Vogel's acclaimed play, Indecent. And Live from Lincoln Center provides concerts from some of Broadway's best performers, including Leslie Odom Jr., Cynthia Erivo, Megan Hilty, and Bernadette Peters.
The Actors Fund's #StarsInTheHouse on YouTube
The Actors Fund has been bringing live content — such as cast reunions and live (from home) performances by Broadway greats — to YouTube at 2 p.m. and 8 p.m. ET. Most episodes are available to stream anytime, but on Wednesday they put on plays that are available only to view live... just like real theater.
Though it's free to watch, we encourage you to donate to the Actors Fund to provide relief to the thousands of theater employees who are struggling right now. The organization normally makes its money through various fundraisers that are no longer able to continue as they normally do while the relief provided by the fund is needed now more than ever.
The Show Must Go On! on YouTube
Thanks to Andrew Lloyd Webber, The Show Must Go On! is dropping full length, hit musicals on their channel every Friday. The catch is that they're only available for 48 hours, so be sure to stay up to date to make sure you don't miss your favorite!