What do Broadway blockbusters "Hamilton" and "Hadestown" have in common other than their titles begin with an "h"? They all had their New York beginnings as Off-Broadway shows. 

Much more than just an incubator for commercial hits, Off Broadway offers artists and producers the opportunity to present groundbreaking work while offering a budget-friendly option for theater addicts. The big plus is, given the intimate size of Off-Broadway stages, everyone usually has a great seat.

There are close to 100 small stages that can present Off- or Off-Off-Broadway shows in New York City. Some of them house long-running hits that have been delighting audiences for decades, others present short runs. Below is our list of up-and-coming to long-running Off-Broadway shows that theater lovers should have on their radar.

All the Devils are Here: How Shakespeare Invented the Villain

After playing heavies on Broadway in "Spider-Man", "How the Grinch Stole Christmas", and "Hadestown", Patrick Page turns his eye to Shakespeare in his one-man exploration of evil on stage.

All of Me

Kyra Sedgwick stars in a  boldly humorous and candid love story exploring class and disability in America today. April 23 through June 16

A Sign of the Times

New York City during the turbulent era of the 1960s told through some of the most popular music of the time. Closes June 2

Blue Man Group

Long before they became an international sensation, three blue men drummed in paint, played with PVC tubing, and strew toilet paper over audiences in this intimate East Village theater.

Brooklyn Laundry

Cecily Strong from TV's "Saturday Night Live" helms this comedy by the playwright of "Doubt" and screenwriter of "Moonstruck." Closes April 14

Cats: 'The Jellicle Ball'

Andrew Llloyd Webber's musical about fantastical felines has been set in the gay and transgender drag ball era of the 1990s. June 13 through July 14.

Cocktail Magique

This show is so far Off-Broadway, it's in Brooklyn! A 1920s-themed speakeasy magic show promises cocktails and delivers. For audiences 21 and over. 


A new drama about the phone hacking scandal that engulfed Rupert Murdoch's media empire in 2011, stunning the world and upending British politics. Starts February 15

Dead Outlaw

The team behind the Tony Award-winning "The Band's Visit" return with a world premiere musical about a forgotten outlaw whose mummified body ends up as an unlikely amusement park attraction. Closes April 14.

Drunk Shakespeare

A hit in New York, Chicago, DC, Phoenix, and Houston, this show explains what happens when one actor downs five shots of real booze and attempts to perform Shakespeare. For audiences 21 and over.

Eddie Izzard in Hamlet

Eddie Izzard returns to the Greenwich House Theater playing all the roles in a solo performance of Shakespeare's greatest tragedy. Through April 14

The Life and Slimes of Marc Summers

Follow Marc Summers in his journey from host of the 19802 kid's game show "Double Dare" to the Food Network, where he has now worked for more than 20 years. Closes June 2.

Little Shop of Horrors

A man-eating singing plant and a rotating roster of A-list stage talent have been delighting Off-Broadway audiences upstairs at the West Side Theatre since 2019.

The Lonely Few

a New York premiere rock musical about the forces that launch us from home and the gravitational pull that can bring us back. April 27 through June 2.

Molly Sweeney

Irish Rep presents Brian Friel's drama about a blind woman who regains her sight and the differences between seeing and understanding. May 15 through June 30.

Oh, Mary!

Alt-cabaret star and cult TV favorite Cole Escola writes and stars in an off-kilter look at the life of Mary Todd Lincoln "through the lens of an idiot"  Closes May 12.

Perfect Crime

A psychiatrist may have killed her husband. But why is he still alive? This isn't the only question you'll be asking yourself at this head-scratcher of a show. At 36 years it's the longest-running play in New York City history.

The Play That Goes Wrong

A Broadway hit before it transferred to Off-Broadway, the show features an unconscious leading lady, a corpse that can't play dead, and actors who trip over everything (including their lines). 

Sleep No More

Easily New York's most unique theatrical experience, this environmental film noir loose treatment of Shakespeare's MacBeth has audiences wandering rooms, looking for answers, and wanting more. Closes May 27.

Three Houses

Composer/lyricist David Malloy presents a self-described  post-pandemic open mic night parable about magic, madness, and the end of the world. April 30 through June 9.


The Tony Award-winning best musical of 1997 gets a first class treatment as part of City Center's popular Encores! Series. Runs June 11 through June 23.

Titanique: Une Parodie Musicale

As hilarious as a maritime tragedy can get, the Oscar-winning film hits the stage full-steam powered by the hits of Celine Dion.