On the stage, on the sofa: 5 musicals to stream

Not everyone has a chance to see a musical on Broadway but thankfully streaming services offer recordings of some of them.

Rowan Christina Driver
1st December 2021
Image credit: Trusted Reviews, IMDb
The term “proshot” generally refers to the recording of a theatrical production, usually in a professional capacity for commercial release in cinema, online streaming or archival purposes.

Anything Goes has now joined the ranks of the musicals being released in this format as a cinematic event, along with recent productions including Kinky Boots (2020) and Les Misérables: The Stage Concert (2019).

With this week’s release of the London revival of Cole Porter’s classic – starring two-time Tony Award winner Sutton Foster – here’s a look at the streaming services investing in the theatrical “proshot” phenomenon and a rundown on five popular examples of musicals currently streaming for theatre lovers craving an instant taste of “the room where it happens” from the comfort of their sofas.

Come From Away: Apple TV

Released on Apple’s own streaming service in September, Come From Away tells the true story of 38 planes unexpectedly grounded in a small Canadian town and the warming community formed by residents and travellers alike. Boasting a host of award nominations, this musical encapsulates raw compassion and has fast become a contemporary staple.

Streaming on Apple TV here.

Falsettos: Amazon Prime

A somewhat lesser-known title, Falsettos offers hilarious wit, poignant tenderness and an intimate cast comprising just 7 actors to depict themes of faith, sexuality and mental health through the relationships of an unconventional Jewish family – all played out amidst the onset of the 1980s AIDS crisis.

Streaming on Broadway HD via Amazon Prime here.

Shrek the Musical: Netflix

Though filmed live on Broadway during its original run over a decade ago, Netflix is once again streaming the musical adaptation of DreamWorks’ 2001 animated tale about a green ogre. The production offers an impressive colourful affair filled with family-orientated gags, hitting the same sweet spot of universal appeal as its animated predecessor.

Streaming on Netflix here.

Hamilton: Disney+

Any allusion to the theatrical recordings would, of course, be incomplete without mentioning Lin Manuel Miranda’s multi-genre smash hit, which took the world by storm for a second time upon its 2020 Disney+ release. Hamilton – which earned itself 11 Tony Awards – transcends all constraints of the theatrical genre in a semi-biographical retelling of Alexander Hamilton’s role in the founding of America, and was viewed by 2.7 million households within its first ten days of streaming.

Streaming on Disney+ here.

Diana: The Musical: Netflix

Another collaboration from the directorial team behind Come From Away, Diana is the theatrical, um… tribute to the late Princess. Released on the world’s biggest streaming service in October, it features a decent score stylistically typical of modern popular musical theatre, though lyrically most limericks would give writer David Bryan a run for his money in terms of sophistication. Cringeworthy, littered with inaccuracies beyond the realms of artistic license and at times arguably bordering on treason, Diana is nevertheless the kind of visual spectacle which is undoubtedly enticing to many theatre fans. Perhaps a last resort.

Streaming on Netflix here.

Anything Goes, filmed live at the Barbican Theatre in London, plays in cinemas across the UK on November 28th and December 1st, 2021.

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