This new, darker approach to the material incorporates new songs as well as additional biographical details of the Hilton twins' life and historical figures of the era. A cast album preserves the new version of the musical.
Among the new characters for this production of Side Show are Harry Houdini; Texas lawyer Martin Arnold; Loretta, a Hedda Hopper-like gossip columnist; as well as the characters of Auntie and Sir, based on the twins' real life caretakers Mary Hilton and her husband, who helped birth the U.K.-born twins and originally exploited them for monetary gain.
Side Show traces the lives of the Hilton twins from their rough upbringing in a traveling freak show, to their turn as celebrated Vaudeville stars, who were never able to live a life apart from the curious eyes of the public. A cast album preserves many of the songs from the original Broadway production, but large sections of Krieger and Russell's recitative that link the action were unrecorded.
The original 1997 production, which is nearly sung-through, also remains available for licensing alongside the 2014 revival version.