Based on both a 1990s book called Shrek! and the 2001 Dreamworks blockbuster movie of the same name, "Shrek the Musical" opened first in Seattle and then on Broadway in 2008, and is currently touring the US with the production. Jeanine Tesori wrote the music and David Lindsay-Abaire wrote the book and lyrics for "Shrek the Musical".
An audience can expect much more from "Shrek the Musical" than the songs in the original movies. There are new songs as well as great choreographed dancing and scenery. Only one song from the original movie remains: “Welcome to Duloc”. However, some of the dialog is taken straight from the movie.
The plot of "Shrek the Musical" follows closely with the original movie, with much of the cast staying the same. This includes Shrek, Princess Fiona, Donkey and Lord Farquaad. "Shrek the Musical" is a comedic musical, with witty dialog and many pop culture references. It is set in a far-off kingdom where things have gone awry. When Shrek, a hideous ogre, attempts to rescue Fiona, a beautiful princess who proceeds to fall in love with him, hilarity ensues.
The cast and characters change up depending on where the performance is occurring. A different assortment of “banished fairytale creatures” might show up on the US tour than on Broadway, for example. Also, the actors will vary, as obviously an actor can not perform on Broadway and in other US states at the same time.
In 2011, "Shrek the Musical" moved to the London stage as well in the West End area. Its release has generated a great deal of fanfare and anticipation. Much like Broadway in the US, London's West End is a popular destination for theater lovers who wish to see only the highest-class performances of plays and musicals.
Reviews of "Shrek the Musical" have been mixed, but above average overall. The popular entertainment magazine Variety stated that the four leading characters “couldn't be better”. USA Today gave the show 3.5 stars out of 4. However, the New York Times merely says that "Shrek the Musical" is “not bad”. Audience reception has been great enough to expand the show beyond Broadway, and the musical was even nominated for a Tony award for Best Musical.