Top theatre to see in New York in July

Here are our top picks of New York theatre to check out in July 2023, including summer blockbusters and exciting new Off-Broadway shows across the city.

Gillian Russo
Gillian Russo

Beat the summer heat inside a theatre this July! If you need a break from beaches and barbecues, the theatre is the place to be. The venues are air-conditioned, but the shows there are hot, buzzy productions both on and off Broadway. In a rare ocurrence for midsummer, there are multiple big Broadway openings this month, including the plutonium-powered musical adaptation of a hit film and a behind-the-scenes dive into the original summer blockbuster film.

Elsewhere around the city are encore engagements of acclaimed shows, new world-premiere plays, and plenty of entertainment that the whole family will enjoy now that the kids are on summer break. Check out all the can't-miss shows in July below.

Be sure to also read up on the last-chance Broadway shows closing this summer, and read our complete guide to summer theatre in New York — what to see, where to see it, and how to plan your trip.

Get tickets to a Broadway show on New York Theatre Guide.

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Back to the Future: The Musical

Get ready for 1.21 gigawatts of thrills! The hit 1985 movie Back to the Future is now a Broadway musical, adapted by the film's co-screenwriter Bob Gale. Go by foot, subway, or DeLorean to see the adventures of Marty McFly, a time-traveling teenager who goes from 1985 to 1955. When he accidentally intervenes in his parents' love story, he has to fix things before his own future winds up in jeopardy.

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The Shark Is Broken

On a small boat off Martha's Vineyard, Robert Shaw, Richard Dreyfuss, and Roy Scheider are filming Jaws. They're behind schedule. They're over budget. The mechanical sharks keep malfunctioning. And the tensions are rising. Ian Shaw, Robert Shaw's son, writes and stars in this behind-the-scenes deep dive into one of the most famous film feuds in history, which almost capsized the now-classic Spielberg film before it began.

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Alex Edelman: Just for Us

After the show was met with acclaim and sold out all three of its Off-Broadway runs, Alex Edelman: Just for Us is back once more, just for us. Now on Broadway through August 19, Edelman's stand-up comedy show centers on how he, a Jewish man, infiltrated a neo-Nazi meeting after getting online hate from its attendees. The five-star New York Theatre Guide review reads that the show "doesn’t just live up to the hype — it exceeds it" as Edelman presents a personal portrait of the Jewish experience and of how far empathy can go, while delivering laugh after gut-busting laugh.

Get Alex Edelman: Just For Us tickets now.

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The Cottage

Trade the New York City skyscrapers for an English countryside cottage at this star-studded new farce, featuring Will & Grace's Eric McCormack, Legally Blonde: The Musical's Laura Bell Bundy, Tootsie's Lilli Cooper, SNL's Alex Moffat, and more. In Sandy Rustin's play directed by Seinfeld's Jason Alexander, a woman comes clean about her affair to her husband and her lover's wife all at once. What could go wrong?

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Here Lies Love

This David Byrne and Fatboy Slim-penned disco musical began performances in June, but its official opening is July 20. For this immersive musical, the Broadway Theatre is transformed into a nightclub to tell the story of famous — and notorious — disco lover Imelda Marcos. With pulse-pounding songs, the audience witnesses the rise and fall of the Marcos regime in the Philippines and the dangers of getting swept up by charismatic, powerful people.

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One Woman Show

British comic Liz Kingsman exploded onto the comedy scene with her sharp, clever spoof One Woman Show. She lovingly takes aim at the "messy woman" genre of comedy, putting on a show-within-a-show called Wildfowl about a quirky, sexual, troubled 20something. While poking fun at the tropes within this genre and producing nonstop laughs, Kingsman also asks why this genre seems to be the only path for funny women to succeed. New York Theatre Guide's five-star review calls One Woman Show "a savvy, perfectly executed show that leaves us wondering what an alternative to the current playbook for women's success looks like."

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Hit the gym at Flex, a world-premiere play by Candrice Jones, that turns the Mitzi E. Newhouse Theater into a basketball court. In 1997, the all-Black high school girls' basketball team, the Lady Train, is training in the hopes of one day going pro like their idols in the newly formed WNBA. But can they overcome their interpersonal challenges on and off the court to succeed?

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Let's Call Her Patty

Also on stage at Lincoln Center Theater this summer is Let's Call Her Patty, a world-premiere family drama about mothers, daughters, and how hard it is to be one or both. The title character is a buttoned-up mother whose life is carefully, perfectly planned — until her daughter's cocaine addiction forces her to confront hard truths and step out of her comfort zone to help. Rhea Perlman, Leslie Rodriguez Kritzer, and Arielle Goldman star.

Check back for information on Let's Call Her Patty tickets on New York Theatre Guide.

The Half-God of Rainfall

Classical and modern legends meet in this mythic, poetic play by Inua Ellams. Half-Nigerian mortal, half-Greek god Demi controls the waters, but soon he discovers a new superpower — basketball — that catches the attention of the land gods. His journey to reconcile his two worlds and be a better god than his father (Zeus) takes him to Nigeria to the U.S. to Mount Olympus and back.

Check back for information on The Half-God of Rainfall tickets on New York Theatre Guide.

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