How Many Musicals Have Won the Pulitzer Prize for Drama? See the List Here!

Take a look at the 10 musicals have been awarded the Pulitzer Prize! 

By: Apr. 30, 2022

Michael R. Jackson's A Strange Loop, the most recent musical to take home the Pulitzer Prize for Drama, has just opened on Broadway! Only 10 musicals in history have been honored with the coveted award.

This year's Winners and Nominated Finalists will be announced on May 9, 2022.

Let's take a look at the 10 musicals that have been awarded the Pulitzer Prize for Drama!

Of Thee I Sing (1932)

Of Thee I Sing, featuring a score by George Gershwin, lyrics by Ira Gershwin and a book by George S. Kaufman and Morrie Ryskind, was the first musical to win the Pulitzer Prize for Drama.

Wintergreen is running for President. To select his first lady, a beauty contest is staged. The winner will be married to Wintergreen and therefore become the next first lady. Wintergreen, however, falls in love with another and the winner of the contest is jilted. She sues and the Supreme Court is brought into the mix to settle the matter.

The original Broadway production opened in 1931 and ran for 441 performances. It was revived on Broadway in 1933 and 1952, and was revived in a City Center Encores! production in 2006. A television version was produced in 1972.

South Pacific (1950)

South Pacific, composed by Richard Rodgers, with lyrics by Oscar Hammerstein II and book by Hammerstein and Joshua Logan, won the Pulitzer Prize for Drama in 1950. The production opened on Broadway in 1949 and ran for 1,925 performances.

The musical is based on James A. Michener's Pulitzer Prize-winning 1947 book Tales of the South Pacific. The plot of South Pacific centers on an American nurse stationed on a South Pacific island during World War II who falls in love with a middle-aged expatriate French plantation owner. This story is intertwined with a secondary romance, between a U.S. lieutenant and a young Tonkinese woman.

The original Broadway production enjoyed critical and box-office success and became the second-longest running Broadway musical to that point (behind Rodgers and Hammerstein's earlier Oklahoma!). Several of its songs, including "Bali Ha'i", "I'm Gonna Wash That Man Right Outa My Hair", "Some Enchanted Evening", "There Is Nothing Like a Dame", "Happy Talk" and Younger Than Springtime" have become popular standards.

The production won 10 Tony Awards, including Best Musical and Best Score, and it is the only musical production to win Tony Awards in all four acting categories. The show has enjoyed many successful revivals and tours, spawning a 1958 film and television adaptations. The 2008 Broadway revival won seven Tonys, including Best Musical Revival.

The 1958 film adaptation of South Pacific was nominated for three Oscars, and won one.

Fiorello! (1960)

Fiorello!, featuring a book by Jerome Weidman and George Abbott, with lyrics by Sheldon Harnick, and music by Jerry Bock, won the Pulitzer Prize for Drama in 1960. Fiorello! opened on Broadway in 1959 and ran for 795 performances.

A big-hearted look at Mayor LaGuardia and his battle for the people of New York City. This charming production has music and lyrics by Tony Award-winners Jerry Bock and Sheldon Harnick (Fiddler On The Roof, She Loves Me) and book by Tony Award and Drama Desk-Winner George Abbott (The Pajama Game, Damn Yankees) and Jerome Weidman (Tenderloin).

Fiorello! was revived on Broadway in 1962. A staged concert production of Fiorello! was performed at the first New York City Center Encores! in 1994. To celebrate the 20th season of the Encores! Fiorello! was presented again as a staged concert in 2013.

How to Succeed in Business Without Really Trying (1962)

How to Succeed in Business Without Really Trying, featuring music by Frank Loesser and book by Abe Burrows, Jack Weinstock, and Willie Gilbert, won the Pulitzer Prize for Drama in 1962. The musical opened on Broadway in 1961 and ran for 1,417 performances. The show won seven Tony Awards, and the New York Drama Critics' Circle award.

The musical is based on How To Succeed in Business Without Really Trying by Shepherd Mead. Power, sex, ambition, and greed are all in a day's work at the office. A window washer climbs the corporate ladder with the help of a trusty manual, but when the boss's arrogant nephew attacks, and the book doesn't have the answer, he'll have to depend on his own wit and creativity to survive.

The show was staged in the West End in 1963, had a national tour in 1996, and was revived on Broadway in 1995 and 2011. In 1967, a film based on the musical was released, featuring members of the original Broadway cast, including Robert Morse in the leading role of J. Pierrepont Finch.

A Chorus Line (1976)

A Chorus Line, featuring music by Marvin Hamlisch, lyrics by Edward Kleban, and a book by James Kirkwood Jr. and Nicholas Dante, won the Pulitzer Prize for Drama in 1976. The musical opened on Broadway in 1975, and ran for 6,137 performances, making it one of the longest running Broadway shows of all time. In addition to the Pulitzer Prize, the musical received twelve Tony Award nominations and won nine.

A Chorus Line tells the story of a group of 17 performers vying for the chance to dance in a Broadway show. After all the sweat and tears, only eight will be chosen for this opportunity of a lifetime. Winner of nine Tony Awards including Best Musical, A Chorus Line is a timeless show for anyone who has ever dared to dream.

The musical spawned a West End production in 1976, a Broadway revival in 2006, and another West End production in 2013. A film adaptation was released in 1985.

Sunday in the Park with George (1985)

Sunday in the Park with George, featuring music and lyrics by Stephen Sondheim and book by James Lapine, won the Pulitzer Prize for Drama in 1985. The musical also won two Tony Awards.

Sondheim and Lapine's masterpiece follows painter Georges Seurat in the months leading up to the completion of his most famous painting, A Sunday Afternoon on the Island of La Grande Jatte. Consumed by his need to "finish the hat," Seurat alienates the French bourgeoisie, spurns his fellow artists, and neglects his lover Dot, not realizing that his actions will reverberate over the next 100 years.

Sunday in the Park with George has had a West End production in 1990, a Broadway concert in 1994, a West End revival in 2006, a Broadway revival in 2008, and a Broadway revival in 2017.

Rent (1996)

Rent, featuring music, lyrics, and book by Jonathan Larson, won the Pulitzer Prize for Drama in 1996. The production opened on Broadway in 1996, and ran for 12 years, making it one of the longest running Broadway shows of all time. The production was nominated for ten Tony Awards, winning four.

A re-imagining of Puccini's La Boheme, RENT follows an unforgettable year in the lives of seven artists struggling to follow their dreams without selling out. With its inspiring message of joy and hope in the face of fear, this timeless celebration of friendship and creativity reminds us to measure our lives with the only thing that truly matters: love.

The show has had several national tours, as well as a production in the West End, which opened in 1999. In 2005, a film adaptation was released featuring most of the original main cast members.

Next to Normal (2010)

Next to Normal, featuring book and lyrics by Brian Yorkey and music by Tom Kitt, won the Pulitzer Prize for Drama in 2010. The musical opened on Broadway in 2009, and ran for 734 performances. The musical was nominated for eleven Tony Awards and won three.

Next to Normal is a contemporary musical that explores how one suburban household copes with crisis. With provocative lyrics, and an electrifying score of more than 30 original songs, Next to Normal shows how far two parents will go to keep themselves sane and their family's world intact.

Next to Normal launched a national tour in 2010, and has had productions in Norway, the Philippines, Singapore, China, Australia, Amsterdam, and more.

Hamilton (2016)

Hamilton, featuring book, music, and lyrics by Lin-Manuel Miranda, won the Pulitzer Prize for Drama in 2016. The production opened on Broadway in 2015, and is still currently running. Hamilton received a record-breaking 16 Tony nominations and won 11 awards, including Best Musical.

The groundbreaking musical sensation, Hamilton, from the mind of Emmy, Tony, and Grammy Award winner Lin-Manuel Miranda and tells the unlikely story of the ten-dollar founding father, Alexander Hamilton who was young, scrappy, and hungry and ready to mark his mark on this new nation.

From bastard orphan to George Washington's right hand man, rebel to war hero, loving husband caught in the country's first sex scandal to the Treasury secretary who made an untrusting world believe in the American economy, Hamilton is an exploration of a political mastermind. This revolutionary tale of America's fiery founding is told through the sounds of the what this nation has become. Directed by Thomas Kail and choreographed by Andy Blankenbuehler, this new musical about taking your shot will turn your world upside down.

A production of Hamilton in Chicago opened in 2017, and a West End production and national tour opened that same year. A second U.S. tour opened in 2018. Hamilton's third U.S. tour opened in 2019, with a three-week engagement in Puerto Rico starring Lin-Manuel Miranda reprising his role as Hamilton. Productions of Hamilton are also currently running in Los Angeles and Australia, with a production scheduled to open in Germany in 2022.

A a live stage recording of the 2015 cast on Broadway was released on Disney+ in 2020.

A Strange Loop (2020)

A Strange Loop, featuring book, music and lyrics by Michael R. Jackson, won the Pulitzer Prize for Drama in 2020. The production recently opened on Broadway on April 26, 2022.

Michael R. Jackson's Pulitzer Prize-winning, blisteringly funny masterwork exposes the heart and soul of a young artist grappling with desires, identity, and instincts he both loves and loathes. Hell-bent on breaking free of his own self-perception, Usher wrestles with the thoughts in his head, brought to life on stage by a hilarious, straight-shooting ensemble. Bold and heartfelt in its truth-telling, A STRANGE LOOP is the big, Black, and queer-ass Great American Musical for all.

*Oklahoma! (1944) Awarded Special Pulitzer Prize

Oklahoma!, the first musical written by Rodgers and Hammerstein, did not win the Pulitzer Prize for Drama, but was awarded a Special Pulitzer Prize in 1944. The production opened on Broadway in 1943, and ran for 2,212 performances.

On a farm in frontier Oklahoma, Laurey and Curley are obviously in love but conceal their feelings from each other by fighting. At a box social, their feelings become more complicated as another expresses interest in Laurey.

Oklahoma! has had Broadway revivals in 1951, 1979, 2002, and 2019, as well as a West End production in 1947, and West End revivals in 1980, and 1998. Productions of Oklahoma! have opened around the world, in Australia, Japan, and more, and has spawned countless tours.

The 1955 film adaptation of Oklahoma! won three Oscars.


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