10. Once (Broadway)
Though this quasi-love story about an Irish busker and his piano-playing Czech-born sweetheart is adapted from an Oscar-winning film, it stays true to its unplugged, indie roots.
9. The Heiress (Broadway)
Jessica Chastain and Dan Stevens breathe new life into a sturdy all-American tragedy about a woman so blinkered by rejection that she cannot consider the possibility of acceptance, let alone love.
8. The Gershwins' Porgy and Bess (Broadway)
Nit-pickers groused about cutting the Gershwins’ four-hour opera into a two-and-a-half-hour musical with spoken dialogue. But seeing Audra McDonald belt out classics backed by a 22-piece orchestra, you want to spread your wings and take the sky.
7. Rapture, Blister, Burn (Off Broadway)
Gina Gionfriddo’s thoughtful, funny play centers on a middle-aged female academic whose theories about feminism don’t quite match up the reality of her own life.
6. Newsies (Broadway)
Disney reinvents its 1992 movie flop for the stage, stopping the presses with new songs, new characters, and some of the most energetic dancing ever to hit a Broadway stage.
5. Tribes (Off Broadway)
In Nina Raine’s searing domestic drama, a deaf young man raised in a hearing household makes a break from his fractious family when he learns sign language.
4. Death of a Salesman (Broadway)
Phillip Seymour Hoffman and Andrew Garfield got deserved acclaim, but it was Mike Nichols’ sure-handed direction that made this production not just liked, but well-liked.
3. One Man, Two Guvnors (Broadway)
A gut-busting comedy based on an 18th-century classic, and featuring a star turn by Tony winner James Corden as a rubber-limbed everyman trying to appease two overbearing bosses.
2. Giant (Off Broadway)
Michael John LaChiusa’s lushly melodic score, coupled with a smartly streamlined book by Sybille Pearson, capture the full Cinemascope sweep of Edna Ferber’s epic Texas-set novel.
1. Who's Afraid of Virginia Woolf (Broadway)
Veteran Steppenwolf performers Tracy Letts and Amy Morton discover surprising new depths in Edward Albee’s 50-year-old drama.