Harvey Fierstein, Judith Light, Jordan Roth, Billy Porter, Leigh Silverman and More Weigh In On Top 10 Influential LGBT Works

As part of Playbill's 30 Days of Pride, we asked members of the theatrical community to share their personal Top 10 lists of influential LGBT plays and musicals. From The Children's Hour to A Chorus Line, The Normal Heart, Jeffrey and Fun Home, here's what they picked. Join the conversation as part of #PlaybillPride.

Being asked to boil down all the theatrical milestones speaking to LGBT history, issues and stories is no easy task — some of our esteemed contributors even called it "impossible." So, we present these lists with the caveat that they are representative, not comprehensive and are meant to generate conversation about all the amazing work being done on stages around the world. Toward that end, we want to get you in on the conversation! We've partnered with Culturalist.com to display these lists and encourage you to make your own. We're asking of you the same we did these groundbreakers: Name your favorite 10 plays/musicals that speak to LGBT history, experience and relationships. Make your lists here and share them with us at #PlaybillPride. Click through to read each individual list.

Stafford Arima
Photo by Monica Simoes

Stafford Arima

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

La Cage aux Folles Harvey Fierstein/ Jerry Herman, 1983
Total Eclipse Christopher Hampton, 1967
The Normal Heart Larry Kramer, 1985
M. Butterfly David Henry Hwang, 1988
Corpus Christi  Terrence McNally, 1997
Kiss of the Spider Woman Terrence McNally/ John Kander/ Fred Ebb
Cat on a Hot Tin Roof Tennessee Williams, 1955
Falsettos William Finn/ James Lapine, 1992
Angels in America Tony Kushner, 1993
Party David Dillon, 1995

 

Charles Busch

Charles Busch

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

The Captive Edouard Bourdet, 1926
The Drag Mae West, 1927
A Taste of Honey Shelagh Delaney, 1958
The Boys in the Band Mart Crowley, 1968
Torch Song Trilogy Harvey Fierstein, 1977
Vampire Lesbians of Sodom (at the risk of seeming self-aggrandizing) Charles Busch, 1984
La Cage aux Folles Harvey Fierstein/Jerry Herman, 1983
Angels in America Tony Kushner, 1993
Falsettos William Finn/James Lapine, 1992
Love! Valour! Compassion! Terrence McNally, 1995

Colman Domingo

Colman Domingo

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Angels in America Tony Kushner, 1993
The Boys in the Band Mart Crowley, 1968
Insurrection: Holding History Robert O'Hara, 1996
Fat Men in Skirts Nicky Silver, 1998
Gross Indecency: The Three Trials of Oscar Wilde Moisés Kaufman, 1997
The Ritz Terrence McNally, 1975
Suddenly Last Summer Tennessee Williams, 1958
Torch Song Trilogy Harvey Fierstein, 1977
Blade to the Heat Oliver Mayer, 1994
Stop Kiss Diana Son, 1998

Rick Elice
Photo by Joseph Marzullo/WENN

Rick Elice

Some of these are obvious because they feature LGBT characters and overtly LGBT themes, and are indisputably great and/or influential. Others, less overt or not even in the ballpark - but in shining a light on a disenfranchised character, or a secret passion, or an impossibly romantic situation, or an utterly transporting fabulosity, played a meaningful role in inspiring my mind, touching my heart, saving my life, and otherwise giving the gifts that Peter Shaffer cited in his "Lettice and Lovage" as the three E's: Enlarging, Enlivening and Enlightening my soul.

(in alphabetical order)

A Chorus Line James Kirkwood/ Nicholas Dante/ Marvin Hamlisch/ Edward Kleban, 1975
A Doll's House Henrik Ibsen
Angels in America Tony Kushner, 1993
Cyrano de Bergerac Edmond Rostand, 1897
Follies  James Goldman/ Stephen Sondheim, 1971
Hamlet William Shakespeare, circa 1600
The Invention of Love Tom Stoppard, 2001
Love! Valour! Compassion! Terrence McNally, 1995
Torch Song Trilogy Harvey Fierstein, 1977
West Side Story Arthur Laurents/ Leonard Bernstein/Stephen Sondheim, 1957

Harvey Fierstein

Harvey Fierstein

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

The Children's Hour Lillian Hellman, 1934
Who's Afraid of Virginia Woolf? Edward Albee (I don't care what he says), 1962
Entertaining Mr. Sloane Joe Orton, 1964
The Haunted Host Robert Patrick, 1964
Staircase Charles Dyer, 1966
The Boys in the Band Mart Crowley, 1968
Cabaret Joe Masteroff/John Kander/Fred Ebb, 1966
A Chorus Line James Kirkwood/Nicholas Dante/Marvin Hamlisch/Edward Kleban, 1975
Torch Song Trilogy Me, 1977-79
Gemini Albert Innaurato, 1976
Bent Martin Sherman, 1978
Last Summer at Bluefish Cove Jane Chambers, 1980
La Cage aux Folles Me/Jerry Herman, 1983
The Normal Heart Larry Kramer, 1985
Safe Sex Me, 1985
Take Me Out Richard Greenberg, 2002

Barrett Foa

Barrett Foa

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Love! Valour! Compassion! Terrence McNally, 1995
Angels in America Tony Kushner, 1993
The Laramie Project Moisés Kaufman, 2000
The Normal Heart Larry Kramer, 1985
Torch Song Trilogy Harvey Fierstein, 1977
Gross Indecency: The Three Trials of Oscar Wilde Moisés Kaufman, 1997
The Little Dog Laughed Douglas Carter Beane, 2006
Buyer & Cellar Jonathan Tolins, 2013
Avenue Q Robert Lopez/ Jeff Marx/ Jeff Whitty, 2003
The Drunken City Adam Bock, 2008

Judith Light
Photo by Joseph Marzullo

Judith Light

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Angels in America/Part One: Millennium Approaches and Part Two: Perestroika Tony Kushner, 1993
The Normal Heart Larry Kramer, 1985
Take Me Out Richard Greenberg, 2002
Bent Martin Sherman, 1978
Tea and Sympathy Robert Anderson, 1953
Kinky Boots Harvey Fierstein/ Cyndi Lauper 2012
Hedwig and the Angry Inch John Cameron Mitchell/ Stephen Trask, 1998
Falsettos William Finn/James Lapine, 1992
Rent Jonathan Larson, 1996
La Cage aux Folles Harvey Fierstein/Jerry Herman, 1983

Jose Llana

Jose Llana

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Angels in America/Part One: Millennium Approaches and Part Two: Perestroika Tony Kushner, 1992-93
The Normal Heart Larry Kramer, 1985
Torch Song Trilogy Harvey Fierstein, 1977
La Cage aux Folles Harvey Fierstein/Jerry Herman, 1983
The Laramie Project Moisés Kaufman, 2000
Falsettos William Finn/James Lapine, 1992
Love! Valour! Compassion! Terrence McNally, 1995
Next Fall Geoffrey Nauffts, 2009
Fun Home Lisa Kron/ Jeanine Tesori, 2013
Take Me Out Richard Greenberg, 2002

Terrence McNally
Photo by Joseph Marzullo/WENN

Terrence McNally

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Anything by Tennessee Williams
And Things That Go Bump In The Night Terrence McNally, 1964
The Boys in the Band Mart Crowley, 1968
Last Summer at Bluefish Cove Jane Chambers, 1980
Fefu And Her Friends María Irene Fornés, 1977
The Normal Heart Larry Kramer, 1985
As Is William M. Hoffman, 1985
Angels in America Tony Kushner, 1993
Fun Home Lisa Kron/Jeanine Tesori, 2013
Torch Song Trilogy Harvey Fierstein, 1977


 

 

Billy Porter
Photo by Monica Simoes

Billy Porter

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Angels in America Tony Kushner, 1993
The Normal Heart Larry Kramer, 1985
The Colored Museum George C. Wolfe, 1986
Dreamgirls Tom Eyen/Henry Krieger, 1981
The Wiz William F. Brown/Charlie Smalls, 1974
A Chorus Line James Kirkwood/Nicholas Dante/Marvin Hamlisch/Edward Kleban, 1975
Company George Furth/Stephen Sondheim, 1970
La Cage aux Folles Harvey Fierstein/Jerry Herman, 1983
Cat on a Hot Tin Roof Tennessee Williams, 1955
Torch Song Trilogy Harvey Fierstein, 1977

Jordan Roth
Photo by Joseph Marzullo/WENN

 

Jordan Roth

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

The Normal Heart Larry Kramer, 1985
Angels in America Tony Kushner, 1993
Torch Song Trilogy Harvey Fierstein, 1977
Falsettos William Finn/James Lapine, 1992
The Boys in the Band Mart Crowley, 1968
La Cage aux Folles Harvey Fierstein/Jerry Herman, 1983
A Chorus Line James Kirkwood/Nicholas Dante/Marvin Hamlisch/Edward Kleban, 1975
Cat on a Hot Tin Roof Tennessee Williams, 1955
Rent Jonathan Larson, 1996
The Laramie Project Moisés Kaufman, 2000

 

 

Leigh Silverman
Photo by Joseph Marzullo/WENN

Leigh Silverman

 

 

So because I'm reasonably sure the biggies are being covered I felt compelled to reinterpret the question. So... Biggest influences on my LGBT experience?

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Brave Smiles, Voyage to Lesbos, The Secretaries and all the other ridiculous amazing Five Lesbian Brother plays
Anything David Greenspan has ever written
Everything by Split Britches
Holly Hughes making loud, culture-changing queer theatre
The existence of the WOW Café
The existence of Caffe Cino
Finding out Lily Tomlin and Jane Wagner were a couple after seeing her play
Most shows produced at New York Theater Workshop are homo-centric, homo-positive and frequently homo-made
Seeing two gay men be not just fabulous but go to the emotional mat in Angels in America on Broadway
Paula Vogel's brilliant quirky and unique The Baltimore Waltz and Desdemona

Jonathan Tolins
Photo by Joseph Marzullo/WENN

Jonathan Tolins

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

The Boys in the Band Mart Crowley, 1968
The Normal Heart Larry Kramer, 1985
Angels in America Tony Kushner, 1993
Torch Song Trilogy Harvey Fierstein, 1977
Jeffrey Paul Rudnick, 1992
Falsettos William Finn/James Lapine, 1992
The Lisbon Traviata Terrence McNally, 1989
The Children's Hour Lillian Hellman, 1934
A Streetcar Named Desire Tennessee Williams, 1947
La Cage aux Folles Harvey Fierstein/Jerry Herman, 1983

Make your own list here: