When the 2019 Tony nominations were announced on April 30, the Hadestown team was overwhelmed with joy. The Broadway musical received 14 nominations in just about every category including the nomination for Best Musical.
The show, a musical about the Greek underworld, ended up taking home that highly-coveted award, as well as sweeping seven other prizes that night. However, the journey from Hadestown’s conceptualization to its Broadway premiere in the spring of 2019 was anything but clear-cut.
Anaïs Mitchell, the author and composer of Hadestown, published her concept in 2010 with ulterior motives to bring it onto stage. Six years later, the musical premiered as an Off-Broadway show at the New York Theater Workshop. From there, Hadestown packed up and trekked from Edmonton, Canada to London, ultimately landing back in New York where it finally celebrated its Broadway premiere on April 17 at the Walter Kerr Theater.
The hype about the musical is enormous, but what is Hadestown really all about? Hadestown tells the myth of Orpheus and Eurydice in a post-apocalyptic setting. Orpheus falls in love with Eurydice, but their blissful life together does not last long. Eurydice gets bitten by a snake and dies. To try and save her, Orpheus makes his way to the underworld, which is ruled by Hades, to beg Hades and his wife to bring Eurydice back.
Audiences will find the story’s content to be intense, and similarly the show’s music follows suit – Hadestown’s songs will stick with you. The showstopping first number “Road to Hell” sets the bar very high for the rest of the performance. Another viewer favorite is the toe-tapping, finger-snapping “Way Down Hadestown,” which instantly prompts spectators to get on their feet. The musical is almost completely sung through, and its music enraptures the audience. Fast rhythms alternate with melancholic sounds. Each tune is a memorable, catchy earworm, sticking with viewers for weeks to come.
In the second half of the musical, after almost two hours, the musical is heading for its peak, filling the theater with a special atmosphere permeated both by Orpheus’ hopes and dreams, as well as the lingering dread over the potential outcome of the story.
Filled with emotive highs and lows, Hadestown packs a vigorous punch, treating audiences to a high dose of theatrical drama. After the show’s final twenty minutes, audiences can’t help but strive to rewind the spectacle so as to experience its emotional roller coaster all over again.
See Hadestown Live
Hadestown is hands-down the best musical to grace the Great White Way in a long time! The show succeeds in retelling an ancient myth for our modern times, as well as and raising political and social issues without losing sight of the individual fate of its main characters, with whom the audience certainly forges an incredible closeness. The characters portray human strengths and weaknesses, making them both authentic and extremely relatable. No character is boring, and no song is needless. Hadestown is quite simply one of the most well-loved musicals of the modern era. The audience feels entertained, surprised, moved, and never loses touch with a show which is guaranteed to make them laugh and inevitably cry – just don’t forget to bring a tissue! Hadestown is a prime example of musical theater in its absolute perfection.
After the curtain falls, you might not be able to put your thoughts in to words, and for weeks you might even find yourself humming along to the tunes of the musical. But don’t take our word for it – come experience the complexity of Hadestown in person yourself! The most popular show on Broadway was extended for another 200+ shows at the Walter Kerr Theatre! Find your Hadestown tickets on TicketNetwork.com or browse our complete selection of theater tickets to find a show near you!