Reading on Broadway

Pull up a front row seat as the curtain opens…to reveal these fantastic scripts and stories made for the stage! 

A Raisin in the Sun by Lorraine Hansberry

Lorraine Hansberry wrote A Raisin in the Sun in 1959. Set in Chicago, it is the story of a black working class family struggling with economic pressures and living in a small apartment. Sadly, the grandfather has died, and they must carefully decide what to do with the life insurance money. They choose to invest in a home, but are met with brutal racism as it is in a white community. The title is a quote from the Langston Hughes poem Harlem.

Harry Potter and the Cursed Child created by J.K. Rowling and written by Jack Thorne

Harry Potter leaves the pages for the stage in this script for the eighth volume featuring the famous wizard. Years after the end of Deathly Hallows, Harry, Ginny, Ron, and Hermione are now sending their own children to Hogwarts.

Hamilton: the Revolution by Lin-Manuel Miranda

This hit Tony and Grammy Award-winning musical tells the story of Alexander Hamilton, who was the first United States Secretary of the Treasury. Miranda was inspired by Ron Chernow’s biography, Alexander Hamilton

Accessible on Overdrive as an ebook and audiobook. You can also listen to the Original Broadway Soundtrack on hoopla.

Wicked by Gregory Maguire

First in the Wicked Years Series, this highly imaginative portrayal of L. Frank Baum’s Wicked Witch of the West was adapted to become a popular Broadway play. Set before Dorothy’s arrival, Elphaba (a.k.a. The Wicked Witch of the West) and Galinda (later known as Glinda) are good friends but unfortunately love the same man. Familiar characters emerge as this interesting perspective of the tale unfolds. The play won multiple Tony Awards and a Grammy.

Listen to the 2003, 2013, and 15th Anniversary 2019 soundtracks on hoopla!

A Streetcar Named Desire by Tennessee Williams

This play opened in 1947 and takes place in New Orleans. Blanche DuBois was going through financial hardships and moved to New Orleans to live with her sister, Stella, and her husband, Stanley. Blanche becomes involved with Stanley’s friend, Mitch, until rumors come to light about why Blanche was fired from her teaching position and how her husband died. There are disturbing scenes depicting cruelty in the flawed characters. This play won many awards, including the Pulitzer Prize and Tony Awards.

Accessible as an ebook and audiobook.

The Importance of being Earnest by Oscar Wilde

The play first premiered in 1895 in London. It was Wilde’s most successful play. Written by the king of the epigram, it abounds with humor. The story is about Algernon Moncrieff and his good friend, Jack Worthing. Jack wants to propose to Algernon’s cousin, Gwendolyn, but has told her his name was Earnest, and she seems to love him more for that fact. Meanwhile, Algernon is intrigued to meet Jack’s niece, Cecily, in the country, and Cecily thinks Algernon’s name is Earnest. This is a light hearted romantic comedy. 

Accessible as an ebook and audiobook

Fleabag by Phoebe Waller-Bridge

Written as a monologue and starring the writer, this funny and moving story debuted in 2013 at the Edinburgh Festival Fringe before going on to theatre in London, and eventually becoming a BBC series which she won a Golden Globe for Best Television Series. She is engaged with the audience during the story, sharing her events with us.

If you want to be swept away in even more screenplays, check out our The Majesty and Magic of Live Performance post, as well as this drama collection on Overdrive/Libby as well as these screenplays, drama movies, musicals, and soundtracks on hoopla.

Video Stream LGBTQ Movies and Series To Celebrate Pride Month!

51 years ago today, the Stonewall riots began, when the New York City police raided the Stonewall Inn club in Greenwich Village and the LGBTQ members fought back, with six days of protests that lead to the gay liberation movement. To commemorate this pivotal point in LGBTQ history, and continue the celebration of Pride Month, here are some movies and TV shows available on IndieFlix and hoopla with your library card! 

Angel Dumott Schunard is one of the kindest and yet most controversial characters in the popular award-winning musical RENT. Throughout the movie, Angel dresses in drag and sometimes identifies as “he” and at other times “she.” However she identifies, she is there for her friends as well as her lover. Angel isn’t alone in being an LGBTQ character in this musical. Maureen Johnson flirts with both guys and girls, making her girlfriend, Joanne, jealous. But RENT isn’t just about the relationships. It’s about coping with illness, the characters finding their voice or calling in life, and trying to make ends meet so they can pay their… you guessed it: rent! 

Also on hoopla is a movie with many recognizable characters, including Christina Ricci, known for her role as Kat in Casper; Lisa Kudrow, recognizable as the eccentric Phoebe Buffay in Friends, and Johnny Galecki, who played Leonard Hofstadter in The Big Bang Theory. In The Opposite of Sex, Ricci portrays 16-year-old Dedee, who runs away from her mother to live with her half-brother, Bill, and intrude on his relationship with his boyfriend, Matt. Despite Dedee being the narrator, there are moments when it’s difficult to be on her side. 

There are plenty of other LGBTQ movies to pick from in hoopla’s LGBTQIA+ Pride Month movie collection, including The Feels, about a girl couple celebrating their joint bachelorette party; My Summer Love, which has a deceptively cheery title for a psychological thriller; and The Wedding Banquet, a comedy about a Chinese yuppie in New York who tries to fake a marriage of convenience to hide his sexuality from his parents in Taiwan. 

If you don’t have the time or patience to sit through a whole movie, or if you’re interested in creative films such as the ones shown at the Marblehead Festival of Arts Film Festival, go over to IndieFlix and try some of the short films and series there. 

Consisting of two seasons of episodes only a few minutes long, The Coffee Shop Series is like a flash fiction series in visual format which you can easily binge in one night. Get a glimpse into everyday encounters Carol experiences in various coffee shops, where she meets girls and guys, sometimes running into them repeatedly, as fate would have it, all the while trying out various types of art, including sketching, writing, and making necklaces. 

One road trip you wouldn’t want to be on is the one with Tristan and Zooey in the 15-minute film, The Thing. With both of them unable to hold their annoyances towards the other about taking the trip, they struggle to reconnect as they travel to “The Thing.”

For something a bit more odd, try Candy Cravings, about a woman who has an insatiable appetite.. for people! It must be difficult to be in a relationship when all you want to do is eat your girlfriend. Find out what happens by logging on to your RB Digital account! 

It doesn’t end there! View the whole Indieflix LGBTQ collection for more short movies and series. You can also find out more about the history of the LGBTQ community in this selection of nonfiction titles, and peruse the reading lists of LGBTQ+ YA Books and YA Novels Featuring Trans and Nonbinary Characters

Also, check out the Pride Month events held by some of our museum partners, including a musical and visual performance from singer-songwriter Anjimile and artist Jess T. Dugan at 2:00 pm today, Sunday, June 28th!