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Five Family-Friendly Musicals

Winnie The Pooh Rockefeller Productions/ Photos by Evan Zimmerman for MurphyMade.

Looking to make story time more exciting for your child? Bring them to the theatre! While some shows may be too long or mature for younger audiences, there are plenty of shows that are made for families and children of all ages, many of which have appeared on Center Theatre Group stages!

Here are five family-friendly musicals to get young ones interested in the magical world of musical theatre! 

Winnie the Pooh the Musical 

Join Winnie the Pooh on a journey through the Hundred Acre Woods where he searches for honey and finds a crew of famous friends—Tigger, Eeyore, and more—along the way. The beloved Disney cartoon characters come to life with cuddly puppets—which achieve a realistic look of “fluff” through fine feathers. The musical was just presented at the Kirk Douglas Theatre in 2022 and is now touring at venues across the United States. 

Mary Poppins 

Mary Poppins told the time-tested tale of the classic 1964 Disney film onstage for a new generation at the Ahmanson Theatre in 2012. Based upon the stories of P.L. Travers, the magical nanny Mary Poppins takes Jane and Michael on an adventure like no other to bring light and joy to their family. It will bring a ‘spoonful of sugar’ to everyone’s day! 

The Sound of Music 

High-spirited nun Maria becomes the governess for a widowed family of seven, teaching them the restorative power of love and family in the classic musical The Sound of Music. The national tour of the stage adaptation of the beloved 1965 film began at the Ahmanson Theatre in 2015. It is inspiring and endearing to see children of all ages on stage, and can provide life lessons for everyone young and old alike. 

13 The Musical

For tweenagers, 13 The Musical captures the growing pains and social challenges of adolescence. Evan moves from New York City to a small town in Indiana, where he must face social hierarchies, bullying, and his Bar Mitzvah! This coming-of-age musical was developed here at Center Theatre Group, starting as a workshop at the Kirk Douglas Theatre before its world premiere at the Mark Taper Forum in 2007. It was recently adapted into a Netflix movie in 2022! 

The Secret Garden

Last, but not least, is The Secret Garden,opening at the Ahmanson Theatre in February. Follow young, orphaned Mary Lennox as she's sent from her home in India to live with her reclusive uncle on his haunted English country estate. Guided by an exceptionally beautiful score, Mary's unapologetic curiosity and the help of unlikely companions send her on a thrilling quest to untangle the pieces of her family's past and, most importantly—discover herself.