The 10 Best Music TV Shows, Ranked by IMDb

While musical movies have been a staple in Hollywood for as long as Hollywood has existed, the same cannot be said for musical TV shows. With huge budgets and long rehearsals, musical projects don’t always work on TV, but that’s started to change in recent years.

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The best part about the explosion of music TV shows is that no two shows are the same. From shows that explore behind-the-scenes Broadway or high school theatrical experiences to mind-blowing shows about musical mediums of sorts or even singing royalty, the music television show genre is truly unmatched.

ten Rise – 6.4

Auli'i Cravalho and the rest of the cast of Rise

Fresh off the success of Moana, Auli’i Cravalho landed his first-ever broadcast TV role as Lillette Suarez in the NBC musical drama series To augment. Based on a true story, To augment followed a group of working-class teenagers who find their place in the world through their school’s revitalized theater program.

The show nailed the often dramatic world of high school drama while showcasing the sheer talent of its cast through performances by spring awakening songs and covers of other popular pop songs. Unfortunately, the series was canceled after just one season.

9 Joy – 6.7

The cast of Glee on stage

Arguably one of the most important and memorable music television shows of the past two decades is Fox’s Joy. First premiering in 2009, the series revitalized the genre of music television shows, especially for young adults and teens.

Set at the fictional McKinley High School, Joy followed the school’s glee club as they adjusted to their new teacher and hoped to start winning competitions. During the series, the Joy the cast performed 754 musical covers of hit pop songs.


8 Soundtrack – 6.8

Soundtrack characters doing a dance audition

Netflix is ​​no stranger to the world of music TV shows, but one of their most underrated is the 2019 musical drama series Soundtrack. The series regularly played with time jumping back and forth as it told the love stories of its characters who were all pursuing performing arts careers in Los Angeles.

Despite an incredibly talented and diverse cast, the series hasn’t met with popular reviews. As such, the show was ultimately canceled by Netflix after one season.

seven High School Musical: The Musical: The Series – 7.3

The cast of High School Musical: The Musical: The Series sings behind the scenes

After years of trying to bring the world of Disney’s greatest DCOM musical high school to another generation, Disney finally got it with the release of the High School Musical: The Musical: The Series. The series premiered on Disney+ in November 2019, and it’s been a hit ever since.

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Now in its second season, the show follows a new group of East High Wildcats as they attempt to put on the best musicals possible under the guidance of their new acting teacher, Miss Jenn. What makes this show so fun is that it regularly incorporates songs from the original musical high school films as well as originals written by the talented cast, which includes Olivia Rodrigo and Joshua Bassett.

6 Smash – 7.7

Katharine McPhee and Megan Hitley in Smash

NBC has a long history of giving music TV shows a platform, and that’s where smash has found its home for two amazing seasons. The drama series followed an ensemble cast that all had different Broadway-sized goals, and it featured some incredible musical numbers, which earned the show a Grammy Award.

In the series, Debra Messing and Christian Borle’s Julia and Tom are industry veterans – a songwriting duo determined to bring a Marilyn Monroe musical to life. Meanwhile, Jack Davenport’s Anjelica Huston and Eileen and Derek are the stereotypical producers and directors. And of course, no show would be complete without a competition for the lead role, where Katharine McPhee and Megan Hilty’s Karen and Ivy come into play.

5 Crazy ex-girlfriend – 7.8

Rachel Bloom leading a dance number in the streets

Crazy ex-girlfriend centered on Rebecca Bunch, a successful New York lawyer who has just been offered a junior partner at her firm, who decides to run away instead of accepting the offer. While on the run, she randomly encounters her summer camp boyfriend and decides to follow him to his hometown of West Covina, California.

Besides being a hilarious musical comedy-drama series with epic musical numbers, Crazy ex-girlfriend also made history for being one of the lowest-rated shows in television history to be renewed for four seasons. Its cult and critical acclaim – including numerous Primetime Emmy wins – is largely responsible for its continued renewal.

4 Fosse/Verdon – 7.9

Fosse watches a routine

Fosse/Verdon is a bit different from most music TV shows, as it’s actually a biographical mini-series that aims to tell the real-life story of director-choreographer Bob Fosse and talented actress and dancer Gwen Verdon. . However, the music still played a huge role in the show, as did the musical numbers.

In fact, music was so important to Fosse/Verdon that the series released weekly albums consisting of all the songs from that week’s episode. Additionally, the series also received seventeen Primetime Emmy nominations, with Michelle Williams winning for her portrayal of Verdon.

3 Galavant – 8.1

King Richard sings

Galavant is truly in a league of its own, combining all the great elements of a music TV show with those of a great fantasy series. Of course, it also helps that the show was created by talented writer Dan Fogelman (best known for It’s us) and included music from the legendary Alan Menken and Glenn Slater.

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The series centers on Galavant, a young hero determined to save his “happiness forever” after his one-time love is stolen from him by King Richard. Galavant ran for two seasons, and during that time the show released two amazing soundtracks with original songs.

2 Zoey’s Extraordinary Playlist – 8.1

Zoey at work while her colleagues sing around her

NBC’s latest musical TV series (which was unfortunately canceled after its second season) is Zoey’s Extraordinary Playlist. The series is truly one of a kind when it comes to musical spectacles, but it still delivered some epic musical numbers that left fans wanting more.

Zoey Clarke is a no-frills computer coder with no interest in anything musical. However, that all changes after a freak accident causes Zoey to hear people’s innermost feelings and desires as they sing popular songs to her and her alone. With this knowledge, Zoey sets out to help those around her get what they truly want.

1 Julie and the Ghosts – 8.5

Julie and the ghosts sing on stage

Julie and the ghosts is arguably one of the best new teen shows of 2020. Based on a Brazilian TV series of the same name, the series follows Julie Molina, a talented high school musician who gave up music after her mother’s untimely death. However, Julie’s passion is rekindled when she accidentally summons a trio of ghostly musicians who once dreamed of being rockstars.

The Netflix series quickly became a fan favorite, amassing a cult following. In addition, Julie and the ghosts featured 15 original songs, 3 of which were nominated for a Daytime Emmy award and one of which won (“Unsaid Emily”).

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