Steve Cuden’s new book BEATING BROADWAY: How to Create Stories for Musicals That Get Standing Ovations is a comprehensive guide that expertly breaks down musical storytelling into its basic components and explains how stories for hit musicals are created. It is now available on This how-to book by veteran storyteller and successful creator of musicals, Steve Cuden, is for both amateurs and professionals trying to create successful musicals. In addition to practical advice on what makes a good book for a musical, Steve breaks down 40 popular musical plays and films into beats, explaining what works and why.

With the popularity of musicals at an all-time high around the world, there is a yearning for new musicals. In this comprehensive guide, readers learn how the plots and stories behind musicals are developed and honed. With his breezy, lighthearted approach, Cuden give creators at all levels valuable advice for building winning musical stories.

Steve Cuden co-created the Broadway and international hit musical JEKYLL & HYDE with noted composer Frank Wildhorn. He teamed with Wildhorn again to co-conceive the international hit musical RUDOLF, AFFAIRE MAYERLING which has been produced in Europe, Japan and Korea. Cuden, who has successfully written for theatre, TV and film, offers writers the know-how and encouragement to construct brilliant, attention-grabbing musical storylines.

BEATING BROADWAY examines the structure of 35 beloved Broadway musicals and 5 evergreen musical films to show how strong, well-crafted stories strengthen and support successful musicals (from SOUTH PACIFIC and MY FAIR LADY to AVENUE Q and WICKED). Cuden breaks down each musical into key narrative beats and plot points to give readers practical, down-to-earth advice for crafting successful musical theater stories that will touch audiences.

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BEATING BROADWAY is a take-you-by-the-hand guided tutorial written by a seasoned professional who really knows his stuff. This book feeds your mind with how stories for musicals are made. If you are interested in creating or producing a musical, Steve’s insights will be helpful and inspiring to you.”

--Jeff Marx, TONY Award-winning composer/lyricist of AVENUE Q

“BEATING BROADWAY digs deep to the core of how stories for successful musicals are created. This is a must-have book for anyone who wants to write exceptional musicals or is just a fan.”

--Scott Wittman, TONY Award-winning lyricist of HAIRSPRAY and co-lyricist and Executive Producer for the hit TV Series, SMASH.

“Beat-by-beat, Steve Cuden breaks down story, structure, and song spotting so you can beat the Broadway musical before it beats you!” 

--Cheri Steinkellner, Emmy-winning Writer/Producer of CHEERS and TEACHER’S PET, TONY-nominated writer of SISTER ACT.