[[caption-width-right:250:Original cast. [[Theatre/MerrilyWeRollAlong Unoriginal]] [[CopycatCover cover.]]]]
->So come with us on an omnibus\\
To a theatre-goers' soiree\\
To that Neverland where the hits get panned\\
Forbidden Broadway!
-->--'''Volume 1 Opening Theme'''

''Forbidden Broadway'' is a parody revue show written and directed by Gerard Alessandrini that originally ran off-Broadway from 1982 to 2009. The early incarnations of the show spoofed musicals from the Golden Age and iconic performers like Ethel Merman and Carol Channing, but the format was quickly adapted to [[MusicalPastiche pastiche]] works in the current Broadway season. As the revue gained reputation, it became a [[SincerestFormOfFlattery point of honor]] in the theatre community to have one's work parodied by ''Forbidden Broadway''; as New York Times chief theatre critic Ben Brantley wrote in his review of the 2000 edition: "such a detailed evisceration happens to be the highest compliment you can give a musical star. It means that there is something there to parody."

''Forbidden Broadway'' is typically performed by a cast of two men and two women with piano accompaniment. The show went on hiatus in 2009, but returned to turning out new editions off-Broadway in the summer of 2012. It's also toured the U.S., has yielded two spinoffs, and even made a few trips overseas. A spinoff of sorts entitled Spamilton, a parody of Theatre/{{Hamilton}}, opened in 2016.

* TheAbridgedSeries: Predating even ''Theatre/TheCompleteWorksOfWilliamShakespeareAbridged''.
* ActorAllusion: [[invoked]] Many, especially musical references to the careers of pop singers appearing in musicals. For example:
** In [[Theatre/LaCageAuxFolles "I Ham What I Ham"]], George Hearn fastens a bracelet around his arm and shouts, "At last, my arm is complete again!" (Hearn replaced Len Cariou in the title role in the original production of ''Theatre/SweeneyToddTheDemonBarberOfFleetStreet''.)
** When ''Theatre/BloodBrothers'''s Broadway run featured David Cassidy and Petula Clark in leading roles, their 1960s hits "I Think I Love You" and "Downtown" became "I Think I'm Acting" and "[[DownerEnding Downshow]]."
** The parody of the 1996 Broadway revival of ''Theatre/TheKingAndI'' had Donna Murphy playing Anna as her previous character of Fosca from ''Theatre/{{Passion}}'' (which closed too quickly to parody on its own).
** The parody of the 2012 Broadway revival of ''Music/{{Evita}}'' had Music/RickyMartin singing (what else?) "Livin' Evita Loca".
* AdolfHitlarious: In ''Comes Out Swinging'' and the 2014 London edition, ''Theatre/{{Cabaret}}'' is crossed over with an attack on the increasing number of musicals having corporate backing/sponsorship with "Broadway Belongs to Me", in which executives take the place of Nazis and corporate logos (Disney, Warner Bros., etc.) take the place of the swastikas!
* AffectionateParody: Alessandrini has great affection for the theatre in general, and some performers/composers/playwrights in particular. On the other hand, some genres (e.g. [[JukeboxMusical jukebox musicals]]) and individuals are mocked without mercy or affection.
* TheAlcoholic: "I Wonder What the King is Drinking Tonight" mocked Creator/RichardBurton's drinking problems at the time of his RoleReprisal in the 1980 revival of ''Theatre/{{Camelot}}''.
* BadBadActing: Creator/DavidMamet tries to teach Music/{{Madonna}} how to act in ''Theatre/SpeedThePlow'', and doesn't make much headway: [[Theatre/MyFairLady "I strain in vain to train Madonna's brain."]]
* BestKnownForTheFanservice: Invoked in "Let Me Enter Naked," where Creator/DanielRadcliffe explains that girls flock to ''Theatre/{{Equus}}'' because "Film/HarryPotter naked makes this ol' creaky play sublime."
* BetterThanABareBulb: As always, but in particular the act of hanging a lampshade ''on'' the lampshading in "The Song That Goes Like This" from ''Theatre/{{Spamalot}}'', owing to the tendency of post-millenial musical comedies to poke fun at musical conventions and styles -- generally, "real" musicals didn't do that when this revue launched.
* BrainlessBeauty: John Davidson, as mocked for his ''State Fair'' performance in "Oh, What A Beautiful Moron."
* {{Camp}}: "You Can't Stop the Camp" mocks ''Film/{{Hairspray}}'', ''Film/{{Xanadu}}'', and similar shows.
* CharlieAndTheChocolateParody: The 2014 London edition spoofs [[Theatre/CharlieAndTheChocolateFactory the 2013 stage musical adaptation]] of ''Literature/CharlieAndTheChocolateFactory'' -- which [[BootstrappedTheme incorporates]] the most famous song from [[Film/WillyWonkaAndTheChocolateFactory the 1971 film version]], "Pure Imagination", into an otherwise new song score -- with "No Imagination". Gags include West End musical stalwart Elaine Paige turning up as an Oompa-Loompa (see HeightAngst below for more on her), a malfunctioning Great Glass Elevator, and an unflattering comparison with ''Theatre/{{Matilda}}'' (another Creator/RoaldDahl adaptation).
* CityShoutOuts:
** In "Ambition" (a spoof of [[Theatre/FiddlerOnTheRoof "Tradition"]]), there's a line that on the cast album goes, "But here in our little village of Manhattan, there are over 50,000 actors, all trying their best not to end up in Baltimore." When on tour, "Baltimore" usually gets changed to the town they are performing in.
** "Look Around (The Schuyler Puppets)" had the cast sing about "all the new shows happening in New York, we said New York..." then they look at how "yucky" the shows are and go "New Yuck!" (Chris Anthony Giles makes a "finger to mouth to cause vomiting motion" in some of the clips of this song being performed.)
* CoverVersion: Music/BarbraStreisand and Creator/MandyPatinkin's covers of showtunes are the subject of several parodies.
* TheDeterminator: ''Spamilton'' has Lin-Manuel Miranda go, "There's a better Broadway out there, and I'm gonna find it -- Or BUILD IT!" This segues into [[IAmSong "His Shot,"]] where Lin-Manuel vows, "I am not gonna let Broadway rot!" and gets the others to reprise this vow:
--> I am not gonna let Broadway rot!
--> I am not gonna let Broadway rot!
--> This is my own revolution, a hip-hop solution
--> and I'm not throwing away my shot!
** Later in the song, Juwan Crowley's character adds, "I am not throwing away my pot!"
* DramaticUnmask: Andrew Lloyd Webber, the "Phantom of the Musical," is revealed to be Mickey Mouse when Sarah Brightman rips off his mask.
* EverybodyHasLotsOfSex: The parody of ''Theatre/AspectsOfLove'', "I Sleep With Everyone."
* EverythingsBetterWithMonkeys: The flying monkeys from ''Theatre/{{Wicked}}'' make a special appearance in "Please Don't Monkey With Broadway".
* FakeCrossOver: ''[[Series/LawAndOrderSpecialVictimsUnit Forbidden Broadway: Special Victims Unit]]'' opens with versions of Creator/JerryOrbach and B. D. Wong on the case, as both were Broadway ''and'' ''Franchise/LawAndOrder'' stars.
* FollowTheBouncingBall: The sing-along of "Into the Words" has Music/StephenSondheim telling the audience to "follow the bouncing razor."
* FormerChildStar:
-->I'm forty years old\\
And I haven't worked since I played Theatre/{{Annie}}\\
When I was ten...
* HaveIMentionedIAmHeterosexualToday: In "The Boy Who's Odd", they imagine Creator/HughJackman saying this (almost verbatim) when invited to host the Tony Awards.
* HeightAngst: Elaine Paige as [[Film/SunsetBoulevard Norma Desmond]] (in ''Forbidden Broadway Strikes Back''):
-->'''Zoe''': I won't have a word said against her. But a three-foot Norma Desmond? I ask you...\\
'''Elaine''': I'm not small! It's the sets that got bigger!
* IAmSong: Daveed Diggs in ''Spamilton'' gets one where he's "Daveed Diggs -- The Fresh Prince of Big Hair," which mashes up the theme to ''The Fresh Prince of Bel Air'' with "Ships and Guns" from ''Theater/{{Hamilton}}'', Daveed's big song as Lafayette in Act One.
* IncrediblyLongNote: In their take on "Wheels of a Dream" from ''Theatre/{{Ragtime}}'':
-->We'll sing till the rafters ring\\
And emote till we overbloat\\
And then this song, this song will end\\
With a really long nooooooooooooooooooooooote!
* IntercontinuityCrossover: Sometimes they make a bit of sense, like ''Grand Hotel'' and ''Theatre/TheSoundOfMusic'' both getting crossed with ''Theatre/{{Cabaret}}'' since all three are set in 1930s Germany/Austria, or ''Theatre/{{Matilda}}'' and ''Film/BillyElliot'''s child actors lamenting that they're "Exploited Children". Sometimes they just pair up things that were running in the same Broadway season, like ''Theatre/WhosAfraidOfVirginiaWoolf'' and ''Theatre/{{Doubt}}''.
* IntercourseWithYou: "Shall We Boink?", with Donna Murphy and Lou Diamond Phillips trying to make ''Theatre/TheKingAndI'' HotterAndSexier.
* IWantSong:
** "Ambition" takes "[[Theatre/FiddlerOnTheRoof Tradition]]" and turns it into an anthem for the struggling actor.
** "The Film When It Happens" takes "[[Theatre/{{Hamilton}} The Room Where It Happens]]" and turns it to a WTHCastingAgency worst-case scenario of actors being cast for the movie version of Theatre/{{Hamilton}}. Leslie Odom, Jr. desperately wants to reprise his Tony-award winning role as Aaron Burr, but laments he's "not gonna be" in the Film when it happens. It was jibed that casting would include Johnny Depp as Hamilton, Shia LeBoeuf as Jefferson, hinted Russell Crowe would be cast as Burr instead.
* LimeyGoesToHollywood: [[invoked]] Discussed in the Creator/JudiDench number, "Why Can't Americans Do Theater Like The Brits?"
* MassiveMultiplayerEnsembleNumber: "One Day More" from ''Theatre/LesMiserables'' is the definitive straight example of the trope. ''Forbidden Broadway'' takes it on with just four actors in [[Main/LongRunners "Ten Years More"]] to hilarious results.
* MediumAwareness
* MiseryPoker: The parody of "It Sucks To Be Me" from ''Theatre/AvenueQ'' has as its contestants Brooke Shields (subbing for Donna Murphy in a ''Wonderful Town'' revival), Tom Hewitt (starring in ''Dracula: The Musical''), Creator/StephenSchwartz (always snubbed for the Tony for Best Original Score) and a JapaneseTourist (who sees all the sucky shows New York City has to offer).
* MusicalPastiche
* MythologyGag: Former ''Forbidden Broadway'' cast member Tom Plotkin gets specifically mentioned by name in their parody of ''{{Theatre/Footloose}}''.
* PaintedOnPants: The ''Theatre/{{Rent}}'' parody includes a song called "Ouch, They're Tight!"
* ParodyNames: Frequently applied to show titles ("Grand Hotel? Grand Hotel? No, this is the ''Grim'' Hotel"), but very rarely applied to characters ([[Theatre/TheLionKing "Rafreaky"]] being one exception), and never to actors.
* RaceLift: Equity president Colleen Dewhurst, who protested the casting of Jonathan Pryce in ''Theatre/MissSaigon'' (and, unfortunately for the parody, died not that many months later), was played by African-American actress Mary Denise Bentley.
-->"In order to protest Cameron Mackintosh bringing Jonathan Pryce over from London to play this role, I have now become black."
* RageAgainstTheAuthor: "Forbidden Theatre/{{Assassins}}" has John Hinkley and Squeaky Fromme aiming their guns at Music/StephenSondheim for writing music and lyrics too difficult for them to perform.
* ReadingAheadInTheScript: The characters of the ''Theatre/{{Rent}}'' parody read ahead in the script for ''Theatre/LaBoheme'' to see what they should do next. It isn't that much help, since "This Ain't Bohème."
* RoyaltiesHeir: From ''Rude Awakening'''s goof on the short-lived JukeboxMusical ''[[Music/JohnLennon Lennon]]'':
-->'''[[Theatre/{{Oklahoma}} Curly]]''': Yoko Ono? What the Sam Hill are you doing on Broadway?\\
'''Yoko''': Collecting royalties. You see, every 1960s rock-and-roller had a wife, and every wife now holds the music rights.
* RuleOfThree: ''Spamilton'' had Lin-Manuel being accosted for ''Theater/{{Hamilton}}'' tickets by three [[Theatre/SweeneyToddTheDemonBarberOfFleetStreet "Beggar Women"]], but the tickets and the Beggar Women aren't who they claim to be:
** The first is Bernadette Peters, who'd gotten tickets to "Tuck Neverlasting."
** The second got tickets to ''Film/SchoolOfRock'' and it's Liza Minelli, who goes into her own song, "Down With Rap."
** The last one got "Two-fers" for "Shuffle Along," which she complains "That show closed after Audra ([=McDonald=]) left!" Lin-Manuel recognizes HER as "You're Audra [=McDonald=]! The HAS-Been! You haven't won a Tony in months!"
* SincerestFormOfFlattery: The real Carol Channing appears on Volume 3 to get a little advice on her Carol Channing impersonation.
* SmallNameBigEgo: From [[Theatre/TheBookOfMormon "The Book of Morons"]]:
-->"...and I believe that ancient Jews like Richard Rodgers didn't write very good musicals."
* {{Spinoff}}: ''Forbidden Hollywood'' in TheNineties and ''Forbidden Vegas'' at the TurnOfTheMillennium. In 2016, '''Spamilton: An American Parody.''
** TheLastofTheseisNotLikeTheOthers: '''Spamilton'' is mostly based off of '''Hamilton'' instead of just a song or two (as Gerard Allesandrini said, "This is not '''Forbidden Broadway'' with ''Hamilton'' in it, this is ''Hamilton'' with ''Forbidden Broadway'' in it!" It also has a story in it where it gives a fictional account of how Lin-Manuel Miranda revitalized Broadway with ''Hamilton.''
* StrangeSyntaxSpeaker: Mag in "How Are Things in Irish Drama?" (''Theatre/FiniansRainbow'''s "How Are Things in Glocca Morra?"), the parody of Creator/MartinMcDonagh's ''The Beauty Queen of Leenan'':
-->'''Mag:''' It's an old crone I'm getting to be, Maureen, an old crone...\\
'''Maureen:''' Stop reversing your syntax, you hateful cow! You'd try the patience of a saint!
* StrawCritic: Ben Brantley from the ''New York Times'' destroys the car in ''Theatre/{{Ragtime}}'' with what he calls "a little review from the boys down at the office."
* SurpriseIncest: Subverted in the parody of ''Theatre/SpringAwakening'':
-->'''Mother''': Oh, God! What have you done!\\
'''Wendla and Melchior''': Mother! ''(To each other.)'' That's my mother, not yours. Stop doing that! ''(To Mother.)'' Mother!\\
'''Mother''': Actually, I am both of your mothers.\\
'''Wendla and Melchior''': Both? But that would mean... eeew!\\
'''Mother''': Let me explain. In some scenes, I am Melchior's mother, and in others, I am Wendla's. I also play a piano teacher, and when I wear this hat, I'm Frau Knuppledick. Four different characters, all wearing the same dress.
* TakeThat: Far too many to count, really, but include:
** "Stop Cats! A Chorus Cat" bewails the indignity of ''Theatre/{{Cats}}'' overtaking ''Theatre/AChorusLine'' as the longest-running Broadway musical.
** The show has a low, low opinion of ''Theatre/JerseyBoys'', mocking the high-pitched singing ("Walk like a man/Sing like a girl"), deriding the [[ShowDontTell excessive narration]] ("by simply narrating 89% of this show, we can tell three times as much of the ordinary backstage story, and throw in more unrelated pop songs than Theatre/MammaMia"), and calling it overproduced pop trash that steals from actual Broadway.
** It holds [[Theatre/JukeboxMusical Jukebox musicals]] in universal contempt: "Oh, what a terrible genre, oh what a terrible blight. Beach Boys and Beatles on Broadway, tormentin' folks every night."
** Disney gets more than a few of these in ''Rude Awakening'' with regards to ''Theatre/MaryPoppins'' and ''Theatre/TheLittleMermaid''.
** Not only is ''Theatre/{{Spamalot}}'' accused of ripping off ''Forbidden Broadway'', the spoof also calls Monty Python fans annoying.
** As with the AdolfHitlarious bit in ''Comes Out Swinging'', the earlier edition ''Rude Awakening'' compares the increasing corporate sponsorship of Broadway with Nazification.
** ''Theatre/AspectsOfLove'' is summarized (to the tune of 'Love changes everything') as "I sleep with everyone...and if you're in the audience, then you'll sleep too!"
** ''Theatre/JekyllAndHyde'' is described as "not quite as good [as Theatre/LesMiserables or Theatre/PhantomOfTheOpera] but just as long and dimly lit" and its music is "perfect for people who find Creator/AndrewLloydWebber's music too challenging!"
** The ''Theatre/InTheHeights'' parody calls it "a contemporary ''Theatre/WestSideStory'', full of Latinos, but not as good or gory". Prior to that, Creator/LinManuelMiranda admits he can't act, and that his raps overwhelm viewers with exposition.
** "Look Around (The Schuyler Puppets)" gets the cast singing about "how yucky shows all are mashing up right now," with three fictional mash ups: "An American Psycho in Paris (a TakeThat on the closed ''Literature/AmericanPsycho'' musical)," "The Lion King and I" and "Avenue Crucible (''Theatre/AvenueQ'' and ''Theatre/TheCrucible'')"
* ThatsAllFolks: Every version of the show ends with one of these, some longer than others.
* {{Transgender}}: Given as the reason why Creator/LaurenBacall is "one of the girls who sings like a boy."
* TheTriple: From ''Forbidden Broadway Goes to Rehab'':
-->'''Creator/BernadettePeters:''' I never forgot you, Steve. You gave me so much.\\
'''Music/StephenSondheim:''' What did I ever give you?\\
'''Bernadette:''' Many things. ''Theatre/{{Sunday in the Park|WithGeorge}}''. ''Theatre/IntoTheWoods''. Vocal damage.
* {{Troperiffic}}
* TrouserSpace: In the ''Theatre/SpringAwakening'' parody, Melchior unzips his fly and pulls out a microphone.
* TruckDriversGearChange: Inverted in "I Couldn't Hit The Note" (pastiche of [[Theatre/MyFairLady "I Could Have Danced All Night"]]). Spoofing how Creator/JulieAndrews couldn't hit high notes anymore, the song keeps modulating [[http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=xdQ2yq-erIY down.]] This became HarsherInHindsight when ''Forbidden Broadway'' continued to perform the number after Andrews lost most of her range in a botched throat surgery.
* WeDidntStartTheBillyJoelParodies: Shockingly averted. The ''Movin' Out'' spoof used "My Life" instead.
* WeUsedToBeFriends: ''Theatre/{{Wicked}}'' co-stars Creator/KristinChenoweth and Creator/IdinaMenzel are not only both "Popular" but bestest friends until Idina wins the Tony Award for Best Actress, after which Idina decides she's gonna try defying Chenoweth.