Show History



The story of A Year with Frog and Toad begins in 1970, when Arnold Lobel's classic book, Frog and Toad are Friends, was first published. Lobel received a Caldecott Honor award and went on to publish three additional volumes of Frog and Toad adventures. In 1973, Frog and Toad Together was named a Newbery Honor book, making Lobel one of only a handful of authors to have received honor citations from both of children's literature's highest awards.

In 2002, Adrianne Lobel, the author's daughter and a successful designer and producer in her own right, commissioned a musical based on her father's most beloved characters.


A Year with Frog and Toad, based on all four books in Arnold Lobel's Frog And Toad series, was first workshopped in 2000 at New York Stage and Film at Vassar College, with music by Robert Reale and book and lyrics by Willie Reale. Later, it premiered in full production on August 23, 2002, at the Children's Theatre Company in Minneapolis and ran through November 2, 2002.

The children's musical next moved Off-Broadway to the New Victory Theater, which specializes solely in family-oriented fare. After stellar reviews and a sold out run under the direction of David Petrarca with Daniel Pelzig s choreography, the show transferred to Broadway, where it opened at the Cort Theater on April 13, 2003, running for 73 performances and 15 previews before closing on June 15, 2003.

Following its New York success, A Year with Frog and Toad played a return engagement at the Children's Theatre Company of Minneapolis November 16 through December 31, 2004.

A Year with Frog and Toad has also had huge success regionally. With its appeal to a younger generation, it has enjoyed hit runs in Philadelphia, Austin, Portland and Chicago, just to name a few.

Cultural Influence

  • The original Broadway cast recording of A Year with Frog and Toad was released on April 6, 2004, by P.S. Classics.


  • A Year with Frog and Toad was nominated for three Tony Awards, including Best Musical, Best Book of a Musical and Best Original Score.
  • The show was groundbreaking in that it brought professional children's theatre to the Broadway arena, sparking the interest of the age 3-to-10 set.
  • Actress Kate Reinders, who performed as part of the show in Minneapolis, is featured on the cast album while, on Broadway, Jennifer Gambatese plays the role Reinders originated.
  • Authors, Robert Reale and Willie Reale, are brothers.