NPR

When It Comes To Family Musicals, Kids' Opinions Matter More Than Critics'

Normally, critical reviews can kill a Broadway show, but not so for kid-focused musicals. Anastasia and Charlie and the Chocolate Factory are currently on Broadway, vying for the kid seal of approval.
Christy Altomare and Derek Klena star in the stage adaptation of the 1997 Fox animated film Anastasia. Source: Matthew Murphy

Creating a hit musical which appeals to family audiences is kind of Broadway's holy grail — think current long-running shows, like The Lion King and Wicked, which have run for decades, or earlier shows like Cats and Annie. Critics don't always give these shows good reviews, but that doesn't seem to matter much. Now, two new musicals are aiming to get the kid stamp of approval.

On a recent Friday evening families poured onto 46th Street after a performance of Charlie and

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