Image: "Phantom Of The Opera"
Peter Kramer  /  Getty Images file
The award-winning 'Phantom of the Opera' performed at the Majestic Theatre in New York City, is the longest running show in the history of Broadway.
By
Special to msnbc.com
updated 6/8/2007 3:04:19 PM ET 2007-06-08T19:04:19

Summer is officially here and your big trip to New York City is sure to be a hit.  You're going to all the big sites, already have your reservation at the hottest restaurant and arranged for a horse and carriage ride around Central Park but the decision of what Broadway show to see is the one you just can't figure out. This year has been a very interesting year for the Broadway world. The Producers, the most spectacular Broadway show in years closed without anyone noticing, a slew of shows opened and closed within a month or two and a blond law student came to Broadway and didn't get a Tony nomination for best musical.  Well, with the Tony Awards right around the corner I thought it might be helpful to look at some of the past winners and see if they still stand up to their winning status.

Majestic Theatre
1988 - Phantom of the Opera
: Phantom is still a powerhouse in ticket sales- and I don't know why!  Yes, the story is timeless, the spectacle is stunning and the songs are lovely, but the show is dusty and I think it's time for the Phantom to go away for a while.

Ambassador Theatre
1998 - Chicago (revival): Chicago is now 10 years old and with a slew of celebrity appearances this show has managed to keep its hype.  Ticket sales were strong but they got a nice boost from the film which one the Oscar.  This still remains a great choice for an adult night out.

Minskoff Theatre
1998 - The Lion King: When The Lion King opened it was like nothing Broadway had seen in a long time.  Puppets, spectacle and that special Disney magic came to life on the stage.  Disney's first stab at Broadway still remains stunning for everyone.  The show is a great choice for families but also works as a nice date show.

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Neil Simon Theatre
2003 - Hairspray: It happened with Chicago and it's about to happen with Hairspray- this show is about to be huge!  With a movie coming out and already strong ticket sales Hairspray still holds onto its place as a great show that still deserves its best musical Tony!

John Golden Theatre
2004 - Avenue Q: The Broadway musical for people who don't like Broadway musicals doesn't have the same newness that it had when it opened a few years ago but it still ranks as one of the most imaginative, funny and overall best shows on Broadway.   This show is a hit with the college group but should not be overlooked by others because it just might be the funniest show on Broadway.

Shubert Theatre
2005 - Monty Python's Spamalot:Spamalot is one of those shows that you either love or hate.  If you like the Monty Python movies than it is no wonder why it won the best musical award but if you just don't get the humor than you can't figure out why this beat out Dirty Rotten Scoundrels.  With that said, this show is a very funny musical with some catchy tunes and deserves to be seen.

August Wilson Theatre
2006 - Jersey Boys:Jersey Boys, despite the loud audiences from Jersey (it is called Jersey Boys after all!) is probably the best show on Broadway.  If you like the music of the Four Seasons and want to have a really good time check this one out, you might just start dancing in the aisles!

On Sunday, June 10th, we will discover who will be this years best musical.  It's a tight race with the classic musical Curtains, the unique Grey Gardens, the fantastically fun Mary Poppins and the youthful Spring Awakening.  Gracing the company of the past winners sill on Broadway this years winners will have a lot to live up to.  Who knows, this years best musical may become your favorite!


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