Despite not finding his purpose in life, the end song "For Now" in Avenue Q gets to this troper. Perhaps not heartwarming in a conventional sense, but still very sweet and wonderful and life-affirming in its own way.
Very heartwarming, in this troper's opinion. "The Money Song," too, just because 'charity will get you out of your self-absorbed nonsense and help you find REAL purpose' is probably the best lesson an adult Sesame Street could give.
For this troper, it was "There's A Fine, Fine Line" that got him. The actress's delivery was so powerful, how could it not? For such a funny musical, it certainly had its fair shares of Crowning Moment of Heartwarming.
Maurice: No matter what the pain we've come this far. I pray that you remain exactly as you are. This really is a case of father knowing best.
Belle': And daughter too.
Maurice: You're never strange.
Belle: Don't ever change.
Both: You're all I've got no matter what...
And the transformation at the end, where Belle thinks the Beast is dead, and he transforms back into his human form. The special effects also make it a Crowning Moment of Awesome.
Cirque Du Soleil
The final scene of the Cirque du Soleil show KOOZA, culminating in that kite finally staying up in the air.
Another Cirque one: KA, where the Court Jester comforts the Twin Brother by teaching him shadow puppets. All the Scenery Porn is admittedly awesome, but this simple scene is arguably the most effective in the show.
"You're Timeless To Me" from Hairspray. A very funny and sweet ode to still loving the one you're with after all these years. "You're fat and old, but baby boring you aint!" just makes me smile.
For this troper, to be more specific, my favorite part of the song is a spoken line between verses when Wilbur says, "Baby, dance with me!" If you think back to one of Edna's lines from Welcome to the 60's, when she says, "Tracy, it's been years since someone's asked me to dance," the line takes a whole new meaning.
Into The Woods
"No One Is Alone" in Stephen Sondheim's Into the Woods, where the characters sing about how sometimes people leave and you have to make your own decisions, but you're still not alone.
At the end, when Red Riding Hood and Jack ask the Baker if they can come live with him now, he tells them no. The two children both look upset, until the Baker finally gives in and says, "Yes! Yes, of course you can live with me!"
The Baker and the Baker's Wife's duet of "It Takes Two", where the Baker's Wife has realized that her husband can change, and the Baker realizes he needs his wife more than he ever knew.
Safe at home with our beautiful prize, just the few of us...
Legally Blonde The Musical
Legally BlondeThe Musical - The song "Legally Blonde Remix" in its entirety. Where to begin? First we get Vivienne admitting that she's wrong and making up with Elle, which was great. Elle decides to be herself in her truly awesome pink suit. Then Paulette gets her Irish Step Dancing UPS Man - It Makes Sense in Context, I swear! Then Brooke fires Callahan and hires Elle... That scene is one moment of heartwarming after another!
Then of course there's the finale - particularly Elle's proposal to Emmett. So cute!
Rodgers And Hammerstein
The song "Boys and Girls like You and Me", sung by the King and Queen, from the Rodgers and Hammerstein version of Cinderella has been known to elicit "awww"s from both audience and cast members.
"Do I love you because you're beautiful/Or are you beautiful, because I love you?"
"I may never come down to earth again..."
The You Are Not Alone moment between Horton and JoJo during the song "Alone in the Universe".
Gertrude listing off the tortures she has endured in a way that clearly implies that she would've gladly gone through more if it would help Horton.
The song "Solla Sollew." All of it, but especially the last part. After describing Solla Sollew in terms akin to heaven or paradise, the singers conclude that in reality they can find it, and "on the day I do, troubles will be through, and I'll be home with you." Being home with your loved ones is all the paradise they need. You really have to listen to this one, here.
The end of Spamalot. Yeah, I know.
This Troper thought that scene with Lancelot and the Prince became this with the "LEAVE HIM ALONE!" line.
Oh yes, definitely. And Herbert finally getting to sing later on, with Lancelot knocking his father over the head with a shovel when he shows up and tells everyone to stop.
Belinsky's monologue on the meaning of art and literature in the first of Tom Stoppard's Coast of Utopia plays, Voyage. Billy Crudup (who played Belinsky in the New York production) got a very deserved Tony for the role.
Though this crosses over into commercial territory, this troper always wells up at "this commercial", which aired after 9/11 to encourage people to come back to New York.
There's something very wonderfully bone-chilling about the full-voiced finale to Hair, "Let the Sun Shine In."
The entire conclusion to Coram Boy. In the play, Aaron is finally united with Alex and Melissa, his parents — although Alex had just learned of his existence recently and Melissa had believed him to be long dead. Also, never mind Meshak, who has had a crap existence (beaten mercilessly by his father in his childhood and forced to help him bury dead babies his father has told desperate mothers he is taking to the Coram Hospital in London in order to extort money from them), finally dies saving Aaron, his "angel child". Sure, it's not how the book ends, but if you honestly care after sitting in that theatre for two and a half hours and aren't in tears... I feel sorry for you.
Basically the entire ending of Equivocation, but especially Judith's monologue about her father's death, and especially especially her Meaningful Echo of her father's comment about "stories that little girls tell to themselves when they think no one is listening."
The end of Tom Stoppard's Rock N Roll, when Jan, about to leave England for what is probably the last time, finally gets up the courage to ask out Esme.
Jan: I came to ask you, will you come with me?
Jan: To Prague.
Esme: Of course. Yes. Of course.
A rather sad example of heartwarming: the end of Francis Poulenc's opera Dialogues of the Carmelites. The nuns are being led to the guillotine, and are being executed one by one. Sister Constance, the youngest of the nuns and last in line, is soon left alone, and it is her turn. Just then, Sister Blanche appears out of the crowd and walks to the scaffold, meaning that Constance and Blanche will die together, just as Constance had fervently hoped.
I don't remember much about the book, but the stage version of Lord of the Flies had one for me, in the third act. Piggy has spent the entire play being, for all intents and purposes, an annoying know it all, or just plain useless at times. However, after his glasses get stolen, he tries his best to face up to the more savage tribe, and remind them who they were before they came to the island.
The ending of You're a Good Man, Charlie Brown. After the very touching song "Happiness," after everyone else leaves the stage, out of everyone in the cast, it's Lucy - the one who always believes the world is ending when Chuck does something right - who faces Charlie Brown and speaks those very words that make up the title of the show.
Starlight Express has the song "There's Me", sung by C.B to Dinah. The fact that C.B (who later would be revealed as a psychotic serial killer who crashes trains for simple enjoyment) cares so much about Dinah and can't bear to see her so heartbroken is probably one of the sweeter things in the musical.
The last ten minutes of the 1992 musical adaptation of The Secret Garden. First there's the Tear Jerker "How Could I Ever Know?" where Archibald Craven comes to understand that he can still love his deceased wife without obsessing over her. His reaction to seeing his sickly son Colin running and playing in the garden with Mary is moving enough, but his response when she more or less asks if she's going to be sent away for doing everything she was told not to do is even moreso: "Mary Lennox, for as long as you shall have us, we are yours, Colin and I. And this is your home. And this, my lovely child, is your garden."
It may just be the production this troper saw, but at the end of The Master Singers of Nurenberg by Richard Wagner, Sixtus Beckmesser, Designated Villain, Dogged Nice Guy, Magnificent Bastard turned Butt Monkey, had absolutely failed at a song and got laughed off. He pulled his lute back to his bench and simply sat there, looking miserable for about seven minutes or so as Walther sang it properly, looking back at him occassionally, before taking his glasses off, just looking down for about five minutes more... ... ...and then, at the end, when a cameraman (seen before, but paid not much attention to — ChekhovsCamera Man) brings the camera in, one of the masters taps him on the shoulder, giving him his hat and leading him along to a chair. It wasn't much, no, but after being loathed by more-or-less everyone, Beckmesser just up and hugged the guy. This troper openly awwed.
South Pacific's Finale Ultimo. Just...that finale. Nellie promises Emile's children that she'll look after them, because she loves them, and then singing with them. And the second time she forgets the words, there's Emile, alive and well. This troper always gets a good feeling when she listens to it.
Green Day's American Idiot. When Tunny and Will see each other again for the first time in at least a year, Will, having been left alone for that year, first violently lashes out at him, desperately trying to punch and kick him, then breaks down completely and grabs Tunny into a crushing hug, burying his face in his neck. And Tunny just stood there, hugging him back. This troper was torn between tears and "awwww!"
"Iolanthe, thou livest?" near the end of Iolanthe. The Lord Chancellor learns that his wife (who he thought dead but actually was a fairy banished for marrying a mortal) is alive. I get misty-eyed each time.
How is Ragtime not mentioned here? So many, many moments, particularly Sarah's part of "New Music", "Wheels of a Dream", "Gliding," "Buffalo Nickel Photoplay inc." where we discover that after all his struggles, Tateh's made it in the movie industry and his daughter is living well. "Our Children", "Make Them Hear You", and the most heartwarming of all, when a still-infant, too-cute-for-words Coalhouse Walker III runs out into Mother's arms during the Epilogue, indicating he was Happily Adopted, adding already to the sweetness of Tateh and Mother's marriage, accompanied by a swirl of beautiful music. It was so incredibly touching that it brought tears to this Troper's eyes.
We're Gonna Be Ok from Vanities: A New Musical, which unfortunately became a Cut Song after the show's Pasadena Playhouse run.
There are quite a few in the musical Top Hat (that is the 2011 stage version of the romantic-comedy film) but one early on is after Jerry tap dances loudly in a hotel room and apologises to the woman from the room below who complains (Dale, who is the love interest), he decides to help her fall asleep with a gentle sand dance. In the film it's not played as sweet and only as fun but in the stage version they certainly do take it seriously and it was so adorable.
Billy's Soliloquy in Carousal. Billy has just'' found out his wife is pregnant and he is just about doing cartwheels, imagining all the great things he'll do with his son, then he realizes this baby could be a girl, and it gets serious and beautiful at the same, he realizes that a boy can grow up rough but a girl needs to be looked after and have a good life. Yet, at the same time, he is still happy about this, and sings tenderly about his little girl. This troper gets a bit choked up by this. It's very believable of a soon-to-be-father. Too bad he dies because his daughter would have been a total daddy's girl
The ending of Carousel is a happy kind of Tear Jerker. He goes to the grad and encourages Louise to believe the guest speaker. The speaker concludes his speech by quoting the opening lines of ''You'll Never Walk Alone'', the graduates stand up and all attendees sing, and Billy tells Louise to believe the guest speaker. Louise joins in the singing, and hesitantly puts her arm around the girl next to her, who was bullying her a few scenes earlier, the girl puts her arm around Louise and they are friends, he's smiling, happy he helped his daughter, then he goes up to Julie, who is sitting there in though, and can feel his presence. Billy tells her he loved her and wants her know that, and she joins in the singing. Then the official who is with him from heaven signals it's time for him to leave, he watches and is finally allowed into heaven.
Leo Frank: I will never understand what I did to deserve you / Or how to be the man that I'm supposed to be / I will never understand if I live a thousand lifetimes / Why you did the things you did for me / Just look at you / How can I not be in love with you / What kind of fool could've taken you for granted for so long?
During a performance of Aladdin closely following the death of Robin Williams, the actor playing Genie stopped during "Friend Like Me" and called out "this is for Robin!". At the end of the song, the audience gave a LONG standing ovation.