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Broadway shows for teens

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Mar 22nd, 2011, 02:36 PM
  #1
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Broadway shows for teens

I am taking a group of 25 students that are 14 and 15 year olds to New York this summer and would like some advice on a Broadway show they would enjoy. Don't want anything too juvenile, but also nothing too mature. Definitely looking for something that will keep them involved, probably a comedy or adventure. Any suggestions? Thanks.
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Mar 22nd, 2011, 03:02 PM
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Billy Elliott
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Mar 22nd, 2011, 03:45 PM
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My daughter has seen, and loved, The Lion King, Chicago, Wicked, Mamma Mia. She like Phantom okay, but it wasn't her favorite. She disliked Cats.
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Mar 22nd, 2011, 04:21 PM
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Well, Cats closed several years ago, so that's not really in contention. But the rest of tenthumbs' suggestions are still playing and will reasonably popular, Wicked being one of the consistently hot tickets. I'm guessing you don't really want to pay full price ($135), but if you do, then either Wicked or Lion King would be perfect.

I also like the idea of Billy Elliott. It's a little mature, but not so much that it would be overwhelming to a midwestern 15 year-old. Mama Mia has adult themes, but it's cute and treacly. If the kids love Abba, they'll love it.

Chicago ... well, not so much. It's a sophisticated adult musical, and not really for teens.

How to Succeed in Business is light enough but may be too old-fashioned for a teen, but it has Harry Potter (so expect to pay full price).

La Cage Aux Folles, despite its gay themes, is pretty old fashioned and family-friendly. And it's fun. But if you come from a very conservative, not-Glee-friendly school, it's not going to appeal. It's slightly risque, but certainly not as risque as The Hills.

Rain, the Beatles musical, might be a good fit. If you wanted to stretch into something amazing, you might consider War Horse, but it's not a musical.

Those are my suggestions.
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Mar 22nd, 2011, 04:27 PM
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Doug's made a good point about ticket prices. If you are willing to spend $135 per ticket, then certainly Wicked or The Lion King would fill the bill. Neither show offers discounts and it's very, very unlikely that the situation will change by the summer.
I would also highly endorse Billy Eliot. In that case, you can probably get discount tickets, especially if it's for a midweek performance.
I also agree with Doug's comments about the other shows.
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Mar 22nd, 2011, 05:30 PM
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Go to broadwaybox.com about 3 months before you will arrive and you can get alist of shows that have discount tickets. Playbill.com will give info/reviews of shows. If you want your whole group to sit together - or in 3 or 4 smaller groups you should get tickets as soon as possible - typically getting more than 4 tickets together is difficult unless far in advance or the show is running empty (and about to close).

Agree Billy Elliot is a great show for teens. I don;t think La Cage is too sophsticated - unless they are VERY sheltered - but they may find it boring. they might like Lion King but that will mean paying full price and if you're going to do that I wold see Wicked instead.
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Mar 22nd, 2011, 05:45 PM
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Actually, three months in advance is probably too early to check out discounts. Two months out is a more likely target date.
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Mar 22nd, 2011, 07:25 PM
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Does anybody have any information on any of these: Spiderman, Anything Goes, Catch Me If You Can, or The Addams Family.
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Mar 22nd, 2011, 09:51 PM
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My kids did not enjoy Lion King, at the time they were an elementary schooler, a middle schooler and a high schooler.

Of those mentioned on this thread I would strongly recommend War Horse. If you must see a musical, Wicked would be your best best if you can get good tickets. We haven't seen Addams Family because one of our friends in NYC said it wasn't worth the effort as the music was bad. He is a musician, FWIW.

Spiderman's director was recently replaced and there are supposed to be some comprehensive changes in place by the time you are there. It's on our list for the next trip to see shows.
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Mar 23rd, 2011, 06:20 AM
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Spiderman is expensive and (to date) still bad and troubled. You'll have to pay full price, but the kids would probably like it as the music is from U2.

Anything Goes, while having a wonderful score, is probably not going to appeal to teens. I'm seeing it, but not until May, so I don't have any information right now. The cast is great. Most Roundabout shows can be gotten at a discount, but since this is in a big theater, it's less likely to be offered at deep discount, at least initially.

Catch Me If You Can (based on the film with Leo DiCaprio) is new and not on my list to see, so I can't really tell you much. If it has a weak opening, it might discount by summer, but if the early reviews are good, then it's going to be full price, as will anything new.

I forgot about the Addams Family. It god horrible reviews from the critics but has been consistently popular with audiences. It might appeal to your teens. Unfortunately, Nathan Lane left recently, and Bebe Neuwirth will probably be gone relatively soon.

By the way, with a group of 20 kids, you would qualify as a group and should look into group ticket. I don't know what the discounts are, but there may be something, especially if you are willing to commit now to a show that won't open until late April or May (i.e., if you book your tickets to a new show before the Tonys, then you are likely to get a better deal).
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Mar 23rd, 2011, 06:27 AM
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I love Doug's idea of War Horse. It is more serious than other options, but when I first saw a matinee of it in London, I was a little worried that nearly the entire theatre was filled with teens about the age you mention. I thought they would be restless as the show is nearly 3 hours long. But you could have heard a pin drop through the entire show as every kid sat their rivoted to the stage. It's an amazing theatrical event.

Of the shows you mention in your last post, the only one I would think they'd really enjoy is Spiderman. Ignore the fact that this is very controversial since it has been plagued with problems -- the kids, not being savvy theatregoers, would probably eat it up with spoons.

Catch Me if You Can is a pretty adult theme, Anything Goes is wonderful but very old fashioned for them (I doubt they'd even recognize any of the songs which is what makes this show so popular) and I doubt any of them are even that familiar with The Addams Family to really enjoy it or its "in" jokes either.

Group discounts are available long before individual discounts are, but I'm not familiar with what kind of pricing you can get for shows with a group of 25.
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Mar 23rd, 2011, 06:35 AM
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I would reconsider Mama Mia. Either get ABBA's greatest hits CD or the Play soundtrack and see how they respond. We did that with our DD and she really liked it. Too bad Hairspray closed.
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Mar 23rd, 2011, 06:43 AM
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Ah, I see my post above overlapped with Doug Stalling's latest post.
What I do know about group discounts is that balcony seats (cheaper anyway) are what are generally a real savings for groups. Do you have any idea how much you are willing to pay per ticket?
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Mar 23rd, 2011, 07:07 AM
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There are a lot of new shows that haven't opened yet, several based on movies like Sister Act and Catch Me If you Can. How to Succeed in Business with Daniel Radcliffe (Harry Potter) is drawing a big audience of teens.

I would contact group sales at both ticketmaster and telecharge and/or at http://www.broadwaybox.com/grouptickets.aspx
to see which shows offer group discounts and how much as a way of narrowing options. Highfivetix.com is another place to check although not sure they do any B'way shows but there may be some good off B'way options.
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Mar 23rd, 2011, 07:14 AM
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mclaurie, I'm curious if you know if the agencies (including Ticketmaster and Telecharge) give better discounts than dealing with the theatres directly. I do know a couple of teachers who organize high school theatre trips and they always deal directly with the theatres. While I know we "plain people" can't buy individual tickets by phone, I believe most theatres do sell "group" tickets directly. Just curious if they are more or less expensive than other discounts.

By the way, I hadn't thought of Sister Act -- which I also saw in London. It's a big, very fun show and totally teen friendly. It's a great choice!
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Mar 23rd, 2011, 08:52 AM
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There's also a new musical version of Alice in Wonderland that's opening soon. I'd also forgotten about Sister Act. It's different from the movie, but I don't know how different.
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Mar 23rd, 2011, 08:57 AM
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I change my vote from Billy Elliott to Sister Act!
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Mar 23rd, 2011, 09:47 AM
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Sister Act? Alice in Wonderland? My to-see list just grew longer......
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Mar 23rd, 2011, 05:52 PM
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Thank you so much for all of your help and suggestions. Doug, you mentioned that Billy Elliot is a little mature. I was wondering, in what way? Is there a lot of bad language, sexual references, etc.? Believe me, it's not like I think these kids have never seen or heard any of these things. It's just that I have to be careful that parents don't think that I'm taking their kids to see something inappropriate that they would not approve of. I'm guessing it can't be too bad if some reviews consider it good for families.
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Mar 23rd, 2011, 06:17 PM
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Regarding Billy Elliot, I suggest that you rent the DVD. I have seen both the play and the movie and from I what I remember there aren't very many differences.
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