Get ‘Set’ for Hairspray, the Musical!

Audiences of all ages love the eight-time Tony Award-winning Hairspray, the Musical. The 1960s-style music, the cheerful dancing, the colorful costumes, and (of course) the lively backdrops make this musical one you will be tapping with the beat and belting out the lyrics for days! 

The Story of Hairspray 

Big-haired teenager Tracy Turnblad has always dreamed of dancing on the Corny Collins Show, a television dance program, but she lacks the trim waistline and the dance moves to be chosen as a dancer. With the help of her black friends, she learns some killer downtown rhythm and blues moves that allow her to pursue her dream of making the show. 

Once chosen, she works to integrate the show so that black and whites can all dance to toe-tapping 1960s music. While the musical is upbeat, colorful, and generally has a positive message, it is also a social commentary on the injustices of American society and the inequities that still exist today. 

Hairspray is a musical with music by Marc Shaiman, lyrics by Scott Wittman and Shaiman, and a book by Mark O’Donnell and Thomas Meehan, based on the 1988 John Waters film Hairspray

Backdrops To Set the Scenes of Hairspray 

Hairspray takes place in Baltimore, Maryland, and has scenes in multiple locations including Corny Collins’ television dance studio, the high school gym, the Turnblad home, and a record store. Each scene may require set changes and could use multiple backdrops. Or, depending on the set design/backdrop budget, you could choose one backdrop and change lighting and angles to change the overall mood of the scene. 

Here are some options that could be used for specific scenes or used throughout the entirety of the performance. 

center stage

This Center Stage Backdrop #2407 shows a stage with floor lights, spotlights, and drapery curtains. Use this for television show scenes or as a high school stage. 

record warp

Looking for a dance-vibe backdrop? This Record Warp III Backdrop #2318 displays wavy musical notes with floating records and yellow stars. This could be used specifically for the scenes with the Corny Collins show or as a general backdrop. 

Gymnasium backdrop

For scenes in the high school or gymnasium, this Gymnasium Backdrop #2352 shows a high school gym with bleachers, exit doors, and lights. 


If you are looking for a backdrop for the Corny Collins show or scenes where Tracy practices her dance moves, this 1950s Novelty Backdrop #2319 will bring you back to the bee-bop days of dance with the musical note scroll, jukeboxes, and silhouettes of a guy in a leather jacket and a girl in a poodle skirt.

For all 33 backdrops designed with Hairspray, the Musical in mind, visit our website and start exploring how you will set the stage for your special production.