Barnum the musical traces Phineas Taylor Barnum's career from 1835 to 1881 when he joined James A. Bailey to form the circus which was called The Greatest Show on Earth. Barnum is a ... See full summary »





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The story of American showman P.T. Barnum, founder of the circus that became the famous traveling Ringling Bros. and Barnum & Bailey Circus.

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Cast overview, first billed only:
Eileen Battye ...
Charity 'Chairy' Barnum
Christina Collier ...
Sharon Benson ...
Paul Miller ...
Peter Barbour
Sue Barbour
Michael Cantwell
Perry Davey
James Francis Johnston
Graham Fawcett
Richard Gauntlett
Alan Heap


Barnum the musical traces Phineas Taylor Barnum's career from 1835 to 1881 when he joined James A. Bailey to form the circus which was called The Greatest Show on Earth. Barnum is a defender of "the noble art of humbug" with a philosophy, and has a free wheeling ambition to make a fortune. He buys the oldest woman in the world, named Joyce Heath, as a sideshow attraction. Barnum builds a museum of curiosities supported by his wife Charity, who would like him to settle down. Written by Jenny Evans <>

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Biography | Musical





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Did You Know?


Jim Dale won the 1980 Tony Award (New York City) for Actor in a Musical for "Barnum" in the title role. See more »


P.T. Barnum: All right damn it. Why don't we just leave it to the fates. Heads it's yes, tails it's no.
[flips his coin]
P.T. Barnum: Mr. Bailey, you got yourself a partner!
Ringmaster: To the biggest show in the country!
P.T. Barnum: To the greatest show on earth!
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Featured in The Many Faces of...: Michael Crawford (2013) See more »


Thank God I'm Old
Performed by Jennie McGustie
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User Reviews

It's so full of energy!!
2 December 1999 | by (Wisconsin, USA) – See all my reviews

Most people know Michael Crawford as the Phantom of the Opera. Absolutely anyone who has heard or seen him in that (Or anything else for that matter!), and even remotely likes his work should see this movie at least once. Preferablely twice, or three times if possible. It's that good.

The movie is actually a live recording of the London stage show, and musical fans will be happy to know that it retains that feel. The whole show positively throbs with energy, due to the catchy music, the lively numbers involving circus acts, and the extremely talented cast. Michael, of course, is fabulous. His voice is wonderful, his acting is superb, and he even walks high wire. Is there anything this man can't do? The lady who plays his wife is a good singer, and acts in a nice, sincere way. You believe her when she plays her part. The rest of the cast is energetic and really help to bring the exciting numbers to life.

The story is nice too, romantic, fun, and surprisingly black and white. At least in my case, I find my self lost in the plots of several stage musicals. Here it's easy to know what's going on.

Watch this movie. I don't think I can put it any more bluntly.

4 of 5 people found this review helpful.  Was this review helpful to you?

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