A Chorus Line - High School Edition


Full Length Musical, Dramatic Comedy  /  10f, 9m

Conceived and Originally Directed and Choreographed by Michael Bennett / Book by James Kirkwood & Nicholas Dante / Music by Marvin Hamlisch / Lyrics by Edward Kleban / Co-Choreographed by Bob Avian / Original Broadway production produced by the New York Shakespeare Festival, Joseph Papp, Producer, in association with Plum Productions, Inc. / Adaptation and support materials for the High School Edition developed by iTheatrics under the supervision of Timothy Allen McDonald

A full-length version of the Pulitzer Prize-winning musical, adapted for performance by students with family audiences.

Photo: Joan Marcus

A Chorus Line - High School Edition
License Estimator

Use this tool for cost estimates based on your specific needs.


  • Cast Size
    Cast Size
    10f, 9m
  • Duration
    105 Minutes
  • Audience
    Target Audience
    • Appropriate for all audiences
  • Winner! The 1976 Pulitzer Prize for Drama
    Winner! Nine 1976 Tony Awards, including Best Musical, Book, Score, Choreography and Director
    Winner! Four 1976 Drama Desk Awards, including Best Music
    Winner! Three 1976 Obie Awards
    Winner! 1976 Theatre World Special Award
    Winner! 1984 Special Gold Tony Award in honor of becoming Broadway's longest-running musical
    Nominee: Two 2007 Tony Awards, including Best Musical Revival
A Chorus Line - High School Edition is a full-length version of the Pulitzer Prize-winning musical, adapted for performance by students with family audiences. Every aspect of the show has been developed specifically for young performers: dialogue and content are age-appropriate, dance sequences are of a length befitting young dancers, and allowances are made to feature actors of any race or ethnicity. The materials have been prepared - with the authors' approval - to help your school or organisation mount the best possible production and to give your students an exciting and rewarding experience.

A Chorus Line is a stunning concept musical capturing the spirit and tension of a Broadway chorus audition. Exploring the inner lives and poignant ambitions of professional Broadway performers, the show features one powerhouse number after another. Memorable musical numbers include "What I Did for Love," "One," "I Can Do That," "At the Ballet," "The Music and the Mirror," and "I Hope I Get It." A brilliantly complex fusion of song, dance, and compellingly authentic drama, the show was instantly recognised as a classic.

Though it remains a full-length musical, A Chorus Line - High School Edition differs from the original version in several ways. Here are some examples of the changes:

  • The character of "Larry" is now "Lori," allowing for an additional female principal role.
  • The open call portion of the audition ("I Hope I Get It") requires fewer boys.
  • No references to smoking or suicide.
  • "Hello Twelve, Hello Thirteen, Hello Love" no longer contains any explicit sexual content.
  • "Dance: Ten; Looks: Three" now features the refrain "This and That," and does not explicitly reference the character's anatomy.
  • The dance sequence in "The Music and the Mirror" is shortened.
  • The first version of "One," in which the actors learn the combination, is simplified.
  • No "R-rated" profanity.
  • The tap sequence is significantly shorter.
  • Paul's monologue is slightly reduced in length.
  • Alternate dialogue is provided for more flexible casting of Connie, Richie and Judy, who can be played by actors of any race or height.
Opening Off-Broadway at The Public Theater on April 15, 1975, A Chorus Line, originally starring Donna McKechnie, Sammy Williams, Robert LuPone and Carole Bishop, transferred to the Shubert Theatre on Broadway on July 25, 1975 and ran for 6,137 performances before closing on April 28, 1990. On September 29, 1983, A Chorus Line became the longest-running show in Broadway history. In London it played 903 performances at the Theatre Royal, Drury Lane. It was revived at the Gerald Schoenfeld Theatre on Broadway in 2006 and played for 759 performances.
A Chorus Line is a celebration of those unsung heroes of the American Musical Theatre: the chorus dancers -- those valiant, over dedicated, underpaid, highly trained performers who back up the star or stars and often make them look even more talented than they are. It is also a celebration of the American Musical itself. A Chorus Line is also about competition, and competition might easily be the common denominator that grabs the audience and holds it by the collective heartstring until the final, ultimate choices are made. For everyone, at one time or another, puts his life on the line. We all compete, no matter what business we're in, for promotion, for attention, for approval and for love. Specifically, A Chorus Line takes the audience through the final grueling audition run by the director, Zach, for a new Broadway musical.

At the beginning of the show, Zach, a driven, compulsive worker, has assembled thirty semi-finalists and is putting them through a vigorous series of dance combinations, including ballet and jazz. Soon he thinks this group down to the final sixteen, eight boys and eight girls. They and the audience know that eventually this number will be cut in half and Zach will choose only four boys and four girls to be in his new musical. Instead of having them read a short audition scene, Zach wants to elicit a personal history from each one: how they got into show business, why they became dancers, what their hopes, fantasies and aspirations are. As he calls upon them individually, they react in every possible way, from bravado to reticence. From childhood on, their memories emerge, blending into a seamless series of musical numbers and monologues, some humorous ("Dance: Ten; Looks: Three"), some poignant ("At the Ballet"), some group reminiscences when they all share their adolescent experiences ("Hello Twelve, Hello Thirteen, Hello Love") and some intimate, as when he calls upon Cassie, his former lover who has returned from California to ask for a chorus job after having been a featured performer ("The Music and the Mirror").

As their individual stories pour out in song ("Nothing") and in spoken words (Paul's monologue), interspersed by learning dance routines that reveal their ability to perform as a faceless drill team ("One"), the audience, as well as Zach, gets to know each one of these ambitious entertainers individually, so that by the show's end, they can identify and root for their favourites as well as empathise with all of them because they all need the job-- they all want to work at their craft.

A Chorus Line departs from the usual glossy backstage musical by presenting a true picture of what it's like to be in the theatre: glamorous, yes, at times, but also tough, heartbreaking and sometimes even tragic, in the case of Paul who is knocked out of the competition by an injury sustained during a dance number ("The Tap Combination"). After these brave dancers explain why they go through a life filled with rejection and injury ("What I Did for Love"), Zach makes his selection, eliminating the last group who reluctantly leave the stage. The lights soon fade on the remaining eight ecstatic dancers as they are told to prepare for rehearsals of their new Broadway show. They fade only to come up as each performer, now dressed in full, shimmering finale costume, reappears to receive an individual bow before joining together to perform the brilliant dance finale ("One") and showing exactly the talent it takes to make it into A Chorus Line.

-James Kirkwood and Nicholas Dante


Performing Groups
  • High School/Secondary
  • College Theatre / Student
  • Youth/Camp Programs
  • No Special Cautions

Licence details

  • Licensing fees and rental materials quoted upon application.



  • Time Period: 1970s
  • Duration: 105 Minutes
  • Setting: A Broadway theatre, 1975.
  • Additional Features: No intermission
  • Features / Contains: Contemporary Costumes / Street Clothes, Period Costumes


10f, 9m
Cast Attributes
  • Role(s) for Asian Actor(s)
  • Role(s) for Black Actor(s)
  • Role(s) for Latino Actor(s)
  • Ensemble cast
  • Strong Role for Leading Woman (Star Vehicle)
(1 male, 1 female)

Zach — Director/Choreographer
Lori — Zach’s assistant

Dancers on the Line
(9 female, 8 male — audition numbers in parentheses)

Cassie (no number)
Sheila (152)
Val (179)
Diana (2)
Judy (23)
Kristine (10)
Maggie (9)
Bebe (37)
Connie (149)

Mike (81)
Richie (44)
Don (5)
Paul (45)
Mark (63)
Greg (67)
Bobby (84)
Al (17)

Named Dancers
(2 female, 2 male)

Frank (boy in the headband)


Cut Dancers / Pit Singers

Casting Notes

The libretto to A Chorus Line - High School Edition includes alternate dialogue for Connie, Richie, and Judy, allowing for casting of actors of any race or height.


  • Musical Style: Pop/Rock, Contemporary Broadway
  • Dance Requirements: Difficult
  • Vocal Demands: Moderate
  • Chorus Size: Medium
1. Opening: "I Hope I Get It" – Zach & Company
2. Morales - Underscore – Orchestra
3. After Opening: The Line – Orchestra
4. Introduction: I Can Do That – Orchestra
5. "I Can Do That" – Mike
6. Introduction: ...And… -- Orchestra
7. "...And..." – Bobby, Richie, Val, Judy & Company
8. Introduction: At the Ballet – Orchestra
9. "At the Ballet" – Sheila, Bebe & Maggie
10. Introduction: Sing – Orchestra
11. "Sing" – Kristine, Al & Company
12. "Montage Part 1: Hello Twelve" – Mark, Connie & Company
13. "Montage Part 2: Nothing" – Diana
14. "Montage Part 3: Mother" – Judy, Maggie & Company
15. "Montage Part 4" – Judy, Greg, Richie & Company
16. "Dance: Ten; Looks: Three" – Val
17. Short Paul Scene – Orchestra
18. "The Music and the Mirror" – Cassie
19. After Music and Mirror – Orchestra
20. End of Paul’s Scene – Orchestra
21. "One" – Company
22. Tap Dance – Company
23. Alternatives – Orchestra
24. "What I Did for Love" – Diana & Company
25. After What I Did For Love – Piano Solo
26. Bows ("One")– Company

Reed I: Piccolo, Flute, Alto Flute (or Clarinet), Clarinet & Alto Saxophone
Reed II: Piccolo, Flute, Eb Clarinet (or Flute), Clarinet, Bass Clarinet & Alto Saxophone
Reed III: Oboe (or Clarinet), English Horn (or Clarinet), Clarinet & Tenor Saxophone
Reed IV: Flute (or Clarinet), Clarinet, Eb Contrabass Clarinet (or Bassoon), Bassoon & Baritone Saxophone
Trumpet I & II (both doubling Flugelhorn)
Trumpet III (doubling Flugelhorn)
Trombone I (tenor)
Trombone II (tenor)
Trombone III (bass)
Percussion I – Mallet Instruments:

  • Glockenspiel
  • Vibraphone
  • Xylophone
  • Chimes
  • Timpani (2 drums)
  • Bongos (2)
  • Congas (2)
  • Triangle
  • Small Triangle
  • Wood Blocks (2)
  • Gran Cassa
  • Tom-tom
  • Tambourine
  • Cowbell
  • Maracas
  • Cabasa
  • Bell Plate
  • Bell Tree

Percussion II – Trap Drums:

  • Bass Drum
  • Snare Drum
  • Hi-Hat
  • Cymbals
  • Tom-toms (3)
  • Floor Tom
  • Triangle
  • Wood Block
  • Cowbell

Keyboard I (multiple registrations; principally Piano)
Keyboard II (multiple registrations; principally Harp)
Keyboard III (multiple registrations; principally Strings)
Bass (Acoustic, Electric & Bass Guitar)



Rehearsal Resources

Music Material Rental Packages Glyphs / UI / Tooltip

Full Package:

1 Director’s Production Guide: A complete director’s script with background material, directorial pointers, details on incorporating the show’s production into the school curriculum and suggestions for involving your community at large.
1 Piano/Vocal Score
22 Libretto/Vocal Books
1 Digital resource download, consisting of:

  • Sing-Along Tracks: Recording of professional vocalists singing the full score, to help your cast learn the songs.
  • Choreography Videos: Simple, effective dance steps and staging ideas for selected songs, with optional choreographer voice-over.
  • Direction Video: Introduction and Rehearsal Session with director/choreographer Baayork Lee, original cast member of A Chorus Line on Broadway.


1 Digital Download of Performance Tracks - recorded professionally.
16-Part Full Orchestration:

1 Reed I
1 Reed II
1 Reed III
1 Reed IV
2 Trumpet I & II 
1 Trumpet III 
1 Trombone I 
1 Trombone II
1 Trombone III 
1 Percussion I – Mallet Instruments
1 Percussion II – Trap Drums
1 Keyboard I 
1 Keyboard II 
1 Keyboard III 
1 Bass 

Optional Additional Materials

A full score is available for this title for an additional fee. Please contact your licensing representative for additional information. 

Additional Resources And Services Available



“One of Broadway’s all-time greats, with more kick than most other shows combined.” – Time Out New York

A Chorus Line is still one of those musicals you will sing about to your grandchildren. It is an occasion of joy, an affirmation of Broadway and a smoke‐signal to the world that the musical can touch unexpected depths in the human heart.” – The New York Times

“Michael Bennett's work stands the test of time. We're lucky to have the opportunity to see this singular sensation once again, no matter what.” – Theatermania

“The startling simplicity of the show still impresses... The show suggests that theatre is both a metaphor for life and a way of escaping it, and there is something genuinely moving about the way it gives an individual voice to performers who are normally just part of an anonymous ensemble.” – The Telegraph

“The show remains an enormously powerful and affecting piece of work: one of Broadway’s all-time greats, with more kick than most other shows combined.” – Time Out

Music Samples


  • A Chorus Line - NY City Center

  • "One"

  • Olivier Awards

  • A Chorus Line in Italy

More videos +


  • A Chorus Line - High School Edition

    Credit: Joan Marcus

  • A Chorus Line - High School Edition

    Credit: Joan Marcus

  • A Chorus Line - High School Edition

    Credit: Joan Marcus



Michael Bennett

Michael Bennett (1943–1987) was an American musical theatre director, writer, choreographer, and dancer. He won seven Tony Awards for his choreography and direction of Broadway shows and was nominated for an additional eleven.Bennett's choreography credits include Henry, Sweet Henry; Promises, Promises; C ...

View full profile

James Kirkwood

James Kirkwood (1924–1989) was an American playwright, author and actor. In 1976 he received the Tony Award, the Drama Desk Award for Outstanding Book of a Musical, and the Pulitzer Prize for Drama for his work on A Chorus Line.Born in Los Angeles, Kirkwood began his career as an actor, appearing on ...

View full profile

Nicholas Dante

Nicholas Dante (1941–1991) was an American dancer and writer, best known for having co-written the book of the musical A Chorus Line. Born Conrado Morales in New York City, Dante began his career as a dancer and performer, appearing on Broadway in Applause, Ambassador and Smith, among othe ...

View full profile

Marvin Hamlisch

June 2, 1944—August 6, 2012As composer, Marvin Hamlisch won virtually every major award that exists: three Oscars, four Grammys, four Emmys, a Tony, three Golden Globe awards, and the Pulitzer Prize (won by A Chorus Line). Only Hamlisch and Richard Rodgers have won a “PEGOT” (P.E.G.O ...

View full profile

Edward Kleban

Edward Kleban (1939-1987) was the lyricist of A Chorus Line, for which he won the The Pulitzer Prize and the 1975 Tony, Drama Desk and Olivier Awards. Mr. Kleban's score for A Class Act was nominated for the 2001 Tony and Drama Desk Awards and also received an Obie Award. Mr. Kleban was a graduate ...

View full profile

Now Playing

Community Experiences