Chicago

Chicago

by  Fred Ebb, Bob Fosse, John Kander, Maurine Dallas Watkins

Full Length Musical, Comedy  /  9m, 10f

In roaring twenties Chicago, chorine Roxie Hart murders a faithless lover and convinces her hapless husband, Amos, to take the rap...until he finds out he's been duped and turns on Roxie. Convicted and sent to death row, Roxie and another "Merry Murderess," Velma Kelly, vie for the spotlight and the headlines, ultimately joining forces in search of the "American Dream": fame, fortune, and acquittal. This sharp-edged satire features a dazzling score that sparked immortal staging by Bob Fosse.

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Chicago
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  • Cast Size

    Cast Size

    9m, 10f
  • Duration

    Duration

    120 minutes (2 hours)
  • SubGenre

    Subgenre

    Period
  • Accolades

    Accolades

    Tony, From Broadway
  • Suggested Use

    Suggested Use

    • Competition or audition material
  • Audience

    Target Audience

    • Adult
    • Teen (Age 14 - 18)

Additional Info

In roaring twenties Chicago, chorine Roxie Hart murders a faithless lover and convinces her hapless husband, Amos, to take the rap...until he finds out he's been duped and turns on Roxie. Convicted and sent to death row, Roxie and another "Merry Murderess," Velma Kelly, vie for the spotlight and the headlines, ultimately joining forces in search of the "American Dream": fame, fortune, and acquittal. This sharp-edged satire features a dazzling score that sparked immortal staging by Bob Fosse.

Note on Digital Perusal: Samuel French's new digital perusal process grants easy, digital access to music perusals while protecting the intellectual property of our composers, book writers, and lyricists. Samuel French perusals are intended to be used for finding the perfect show to fit your theater, casting pool, and resources. Perusals should be used to get acquainted with the music and script. They cannot be used to hold auditions, produce the show without a license, or find sheet music for a separate performance

Note on High School Edition: Adapted in collaboration with iTheatrics, Kander & Ebb's legendary and award-winning musical about fame, fortune and acquittal is now widely available to be performed by High Schools across the world. Note that high school and youth organizations may not produce the standard version of CHICAGO, and must apply for CHICAGO: HIGH SCHOOL EDITION

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Accolades

  • NOMINEE! 1975 Tony® Awards: Best Musical, Best Book of a Musical, Best Original Score
    WINNER! 1997 Tony
    ® Award, Best Revival of a Musical

Reviews

"A pulse racing revival that flies us right into musical heaven." - The New York Times

"Wildly entertaining...[with a] dazzling score." - New York Daily News

"As dazzling a demonstration of the craft of musical theatre as you're ever going to see on a Broadway stage." - The New York Post

 “Fosse’s best work, uncompromising and with real strength showing in every idea and image.” - Newsweek

Videos

  • Original 1975 Broadway Commercial
  • 1976 Tony Awards-Original Broadway Company
  • Original Broadway Company-1975
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Considerations

Performing Groups

  • College Theatre / Student
  • Community Theatre
  • Dinner Theatre
  • Professional Theatre
  • Large Stage

Cautions

  • Caution Alcohol Alcohol
  • Artboard 3 Gun Shots
  • Caution Strong Language Strong Language
  • Caution Mild Adult Mild Adult Themes

License details

  • Licensing fees and rental materials quoted upon application.

    This title is currently restricted. Please submit a license request to determine availability.
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Production

Details

  • Time Period: 1920s
  • Duration: 120 minutes (2 hours)
  • Setting: Chicago, Illinois. The late 1920s.
  • Features / Contains: Period Costumes

Music

  • Musical Style: Classic Broadway, Jazz
  • Vocal Demands: Moderate
  • Orchestra Size: Large
  • Chorus Size: Large

Song Samples

All That Jazz
0:00
Funny Honey
0:00
The Cell Block Tango
0:00
When You're Good to Momma
0:00
All I Care About
0:00
A Little Bit of Good
0:00
We Both Reached for the Gun
0:00
Roxie
0:00
I Can't Do It Alone
0:00
My Own Best Friend
0:00
Mr. Cellophane
0:00
When Velma Takes the Stand
0:00
Razzle Dazzle
0:00
Class
0:00
Nowadays
0:00

Casting

9m, 10f

VELMA KELLY: Female, 25-40 (Range: Alto, E3-D5)
Vaudville performer who is accused of murdering her sister and husband. Hardened by fame, she cares for no one but herself and her attempt to get away with murder.

ROXIE HART: Female, 20-30 (Range: Mezzo-Soprano, F3-B4)
Reads and keeps up with murder trials in Chicago, and follows suit by murdering her lover, Fred Casely. She stops at nothing to render a media storm with one goal: to get away with it.

FRED CASELY: Male, 30-50 (Range: Ensemble/Part Flexible)
Roxie’s short lived lover. Murdered for trying to leave Roxie.

SERGEANT FOGARTY: Male, 35-55 (Range: Ensemble/Part Flexible)
Assigned to Roxie’s case. After asking the right questions, he manages to get Roxie to confess.

AMOS HART: Male, 30-50 (Range: Baritone, C3-F#4)
Roxie’s faithful husband. Lies for her and tries to take the blame until he realizes that he has been two-timed by Roxie. Still in love with her, or misguided, he believes anything she says in her pursuit to get out of jail.

LIZ: Female, 18-45 (Range: Ensemble, A3-C#5)
Prisoner at Cook County Jail. She is imprisoned after shooting two warning shots into her husband’s head.

ANNIE: Female, 18-45 (Range: Ensemble, A3-C#5)
Prisoner at the Cook County Jail. Murder’s her lover after finding out he already has six wives. “One of those Mormons, ya’ know.”

JUNE: Female, 18-45 (Range: Ensemble, A3-C#5)
Prisoner at Cook County Jail. After her husband accuses her of screwing the milk man, he mysteriously runs into her knife ten times.

HUNYAK: Female, 25-45 (Range: Non-Singing Role)
Hungarian Prisoner at Cook County Jail. The only English she speaks is the phase, “Not Guilty.” Which follows her to her grave.

MONA: Female, 18-45 (Range: Ensemble, A3-C#5)
Prisoner at Cook County Jail. Murders her lover after he has a round of affairs with other woman, and an occasional man. I guess you could say it was “artistic differences.”

MARTIN HARRISON: Male, 35-55 (Range: Ensemble/Part Flexible)
Ensemble member who doubles as the Master of Ceremonies at times.

MATRON "MAMA" MORTON: Female, 30-50 (Range: Alto, F#3-Bb4)
Leader of the prisoners of Cook County Jail. The total essence of corruption. Accepts bribes for favors from laundry service to making calls to lawyers. “When you’re good to Moma, Moma’s good to you.”

BILLY FLYNN: Male, 35-50 (Range: Baritone Bb2-G4)
Established lawyer who hasn’t lost a woman’s case yet. Master of media manipulation who will get a girl off the hook as long as she can fork up the hefty $5,000 fee.

MARY SUNSHINE: Female, 25-55 (Range: Soprano, Bb3-Bb5)
Sob sister reporter from the Evening Star. Believes there is a little bit of good in everyone and will believe anything she is fed that matches her beliefs.

GO-TO-HELL-KITTY: Female, 21-40 (Range: Ensemble, A3-C#5)
Steals the spotlight when she Murders her husband along with three other woman. Her crimes are labeled “Lake Shore Drive Massacre.”

HARRY: (Range: Ensemble/Part Flexible)
Murdered by Go-To-Hell Kitty for sleeping around with three women behind her back.

AARON: (Range: Ensemble/Part Flexible)
Court appointed lawyer for Hunyak. He tries to get her to confess to speed along the trial.

JUDGE: Male, 40-65 (Range: Ensemble/Part Flexible)
Judge overseeing Roxie’s Trial.

COURT CLERK: (Range: Ensemble/Part Flexible)
Swears people in with their hand on the bible. “Blah, Blah, Truth, Truth. Selp-you God.”

CHORUS (SATB) 


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Cast Attributes

  • Non-Traditional casting
  • Flexible casting
  • Local Celebrity Cameo
  • Room for Extras
  • Strong Role for Leading Man (Star Vehicle)
  • Strong Role for Leading Woman (Star Vehicle)

Resources

Rehearsal Resources

Music Material Rental Packages Glyphs / UI / Tooltip

Full Package

2 Conductor/Rehearsal Piano Scores
20 Chorus Books

Reed I (Piccolo, Clarinet, Soprano & Alto Saxophones)
Reed II (Piccolo, Clarinet, Soprano & Tenor Saxophones)
Reed III (Clarinet, Bass Clarinet, Soprano, Tenor & Baritone Saxophones)
Trumpets I & II (2 Books)
Trombone I
Trombone II
Tuba/Bass
Percussion (Snare Drum, 3 Toms [High, Med., Low-Floor], Bass Drum, Crash Cymbal, Ride Cymbal, Splash Cymbal, Hi Hats, Xylophone [2 notes: F & G], Orchestra Bells or Glockenspiel, NBC Chimes [quasi Vibraphone], Temple Blocks, Cow Bell, Triangle, Tambourine, Castanet Machine, Wood Block, Ratchet, Pop Gun, Siren Whistle [Acme], Slide Whistle, Bike Horn, Clank [Metallic])
Banjo
Keyboard I (Piano, Harmonium)
Keyboard II (Piano, Accordion)
Violin

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Authors

Fred Ebb

Fred Ebb (1928 – 2004) won Tony, Emmy, Grammy, and Kennedy Center Honors Lifetime Achievement Awards for his work as a writer, director, and composer. His collaborations with John Kander, Bob Fosse, Judy Garland, Barbra Streisand, and Liza Minnelli made him a legend in the New York theatre community. Mr. Kander and Mr. ...

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Bob Fosse

Robert Louis Fosse was born in Chicago, Illinois on June 23, 1927. Fosse took an early interest in dance, displaying unusual skill. His parents supported his interest, enrolling him in formal dance training. By his early teens, Fosse was dancing professionally in local nightclubs. It was here that he was first exposed ...

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John Kander

John Harold Kander was born on March 18, 1927 in Kansas City, Missouri to Harold and Berenice (Aaron) Kander. He was exposed to music at an early age. Kander believed that a bout of tuberculosis as a baby, which had kept him isolated from other people, had actually helped him develop his sense of sound. At age six he b ...

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Maurine Dallas Watkins

Maurine Dallas Watkins

Chicago first opened on Broadway at the 46th Street Theatre in New York City on June 3, 1975. It was directed and choreographed by Bob Fosse. 

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