ArtsAutosBooksBusinessEducationEntertainmentFamilyFashionFoodGamesGenderHealthHolidaysHomeHubPagesPersonal FinancePetsPoliticsReligionSportsTechnologyTravel

Best Cult Stage Musicals

Updated on August 24, 2013
Source

Musicals That Have Achieved Cult Status

On Broadway, some musicals are unmitigated hits and may even run for years--Cats, Phantom of the Opera, and Les Miserables come to mind, among others. Then you have the flops--Leap of Faith, Dance of the Vampires, and countless other musicals that closed their doors after a less-than-respectable number of performances.

Some of those flops, however, go on to develop a cult status with legions of fans--they gain a new life in regional theater and through original cast recordings.

Read on for the best cult musicals from on (or off) the Broadway stage.

A Clip from The Rocky Horror Show

The Rocky Horror Show

If you're making a list of cult musicals, top and foremost on the list is probably The Rocky Horror Show, which didn't do well after coming from across the pond and then was made into a movie starring Tim Curry as the lusty Dr. Frank N. Furter.

Brad and Janet, recently engaged, are on their way to visit an old tutor when they get caught in a rainstorm with a flat tire and seek shelter and a telephone at the nearest house--a strange castle, filled with even stranger people. They're uneasy when they meet Frank, and more so when they find out he's a scientist who has created the perfect specimen of a man, named Rocky Horror.

From there, the plot verges into murder, sexual awakening, and a final blast-off into outer space. While the musical film comes more to mind when you think of cult following--there are midnight showings all over the country, with props and sing-alongs and costumes--the stage musical is what started it all.

A Clip from Side Show

Side Show

Side Show is a musical with two main characters who are attached at the hip--literally. Daisy and Violet are Siamese twins who make a living by participating in a circus sideshow, and the performers did actually exist back in the 1930s.

Violet, the quiet sister, longs for a normal life with a husband and babies, while Daisy longs for the limelight. They both fall in love and do end up in the limelight--though not everything works out for the best, in the end they do have each other.

A musical about conjoined twins is just quirky enough to become a cult hit and build up quite an audience over the years, and while sometimes the songs falter for the most part they are strong and entertaining.

A Clip from Bat Boy

Bat Boy

Bat Boy is a cult classic inspired by a story in the World Weekly News, a tabloid that once reported a completely made-up but entertaining story about a vicious bat-boy creature found in a cave.

Bat Boy: The Musical takes that premise, leaving the setting in a backwards West Virginia town, and notches up the absurdity and the fun. When the local vet's wife can't stand the thought of the bat creature being put down, she pleads for his life and is delighted when she succeeds in teaching the batboy to talk and act like a civilized person--unaware that her husband is feeding the batboy blood, and that without it the creature will again sink into savagery.

The musical has thwarted romance, a rocky marriage, a bat creature with an odd British accent, and locals who are ready to storm in with pitchforks--and the songs are fun, too.

A Clip from Carrie

Carrie

Stephen King's novel Carrie is hardly a cult hit--it's one of the most popular horror novels ever and launched his career as a writer. The musical, though, was less successful--it opened to very poor reviews and lost $7 million.

Fast forward to today, and the musical has gained a devoted cult following. As in the book, Carrie is a tormented teen who is teased by her peers at school and emotionally abused by her religious fanatic mother at home. When she discovers that she can use her mind to move objects, she begins to practice with her power, which explodes into destruction on prom night when she is the victim of a cruel prank.

Carrie's critics mocked the fake blood, the uninspired lyrics, and the bland music--but it lives on today and was even revived in 2012.

Other Cult Musicals You May Enjoy

Of course, other great cult musicals abound, including:

  • Hedwig and the Angry Inch
  • Tommy
  • Xanadu
  • Anyone Can Whistle
  • Taboo
  • Dance of the Vampires

What's your favorite cult musical?

Comments

    0 of 8192 characters used
    Post Comment

    • DDE profile image

      Devika Primić 

      4 years ago from Dubrovnik, Croatia

      Interesting and informative about cult musicals you have a greater knowledge of this title.

    working

    This website uses cookies

    As a user in the EEA, your approval is needed on a few things. To provide a better website experience, hubpages.com uses cookies (and other similar technologies) and may collect, process, and share personal data. Please choose which areas of our service you consent to our doing so.

    For more information on managing or withdrawing consents and how we handle data, visit our Privacy Policy at: https://hubpages.com/privacy-policy#gdpr

    Show Details
    Necessary
    HubPages Device IDThis is used to identify particular browsers or devices when the access the service, and is used for security reasons.
    LoginThis is necessary to sign in to the HubPages Service.
    Google RecaptchaThis is used to prevent bots and spam. (Privacy Policy)
    AkismetThis is used to detect comment spam. (Privacy Policy)
    HubPages Google AnalyticsThis is used to provide data on traffic to our website, all personally identifyable data is anonymized. (Privacy Policy)
    HubPages Traffic PixelThis is used to collect data on traffic to articles and other pages on our site. Unless you are signed in to a HubPages account, all personally identifiable information is anonymized.
    Amazon Web ServicesThis is a cloud services platform that we used to host our service. (Privacy Policy)
    CloudflareThis is a cloud CDN service that we use to efficiently deliver files required for our service to operate such as javascript, cascading style sheets, images, and videos. (Privacy Policy)
    Google Hosted LibrariesJavascript software libraries such as jQuery are loaded at endpoints on the googleapis.com or gstatic.com domains, for performance and efficiency reasons. (Privacy Policy)
    Features
    Google Custom SearchThis is feature allows you to search the site. (Privacy Policy)
    Google MapsSome articles have Google Maps embedded in them. (Privacy Policy)
    Google ChartsThis is used to display charts and graphs on articles and the author center. (Privacy Policy)
    Google AdSense Host APIThis service allows you to sign up for or associate a Google AdSense account with HubPages, so that you can earn money from ads on your articles. No data is shared unless you engage with this feature. (Privacy Policy)
    Google YouTubeSome articles have YouTube videos embedded in them. (Privacy Policy)
    VimeoSome articles have Vimeo videos embedded in them. (Privacy Policy)
    PaypalThis is used for a registered author who enrolls in the HubPages Earnings program and requests to be paid via PayPal. No data is shared with Paypal unless you engage with this feature. (Privacy Policy)
    Facebook LoginYou can use this to streamline signing up for, or signing in to your Hubpages account. No data is shared with Facebook unless you engage with this feature. (Privacy Policy)
    MavenThis supports the Maven widget and search functionality. (Privacy Policy)
    Marketing
    Google AdSenseThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    Google DoubleClickGoogle provides ad serving technology and runs an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    Index ExchangeThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    SovrnThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    Facebook AdsThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    Amazon Unified Ad MarketplaceThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    AppNexusThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    OpenxThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    Rubicon ProjectThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    TripleLiftThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    Say MediaWe partner with Say Media to deliver ad campaigns on our sites. (Privacy Policy)
    Remarketing PixelsWe may use remarketing pixels from advertising networks such as Google AdWords, Bing Ads, and Facebook in order to advertise the HubPages Service to people that have visited our sites.
    Conversion Tracking PixelsWe may use conversion tracking pixels from advertising networks such as Google AdWords, Bing Ads, and Facebook in order to identify when an advertisement has successfully resulted in the desired action, such as signing up for the HubPages Service or publishing an article on the HubPages Service.
    Statistics
    Author Google AnalyticsThis is used to provide traffic data and reports to the authors of articles on the HubPages Service. (Privacy Policy)
    ComscoreComScore is a media measurement and analytics company providing marketing data and analytics to enterprises, media and advertising agencies, and publishers. Non-consent will result in ComScore only processing obfuscated personal data. (Privacy Policy)
    Amazon Tracking PixelSome articles display amazon products as part of the Amazon Affiliate program, this pixel provides traffic statistics for those products (Privacy Policy)