The Best Love Songs From The Musicals

We round up the finest love songs to set the stage for your Valentine's Day...

Whether you’re spending February 14 with your better half, getting a takeaway with the cat, or you’re just happy ignoring the whole thing completely, the songs from the West End’s greatest shows can teach you a thing or two about falling in love.

Take a look at our favourite love songs from the musicals then – a place where emotions are sung loud, where the spotlight always finds your best side, and where real romance is only a curtain call away…

1. ‘As Long As You’re Mine’ (Wicked)

After years of being told she wasn’t good enough, Elphaba struggles to believe her growing feelings for Fiyero are returned. He, on the other hand, sees a whole new world thanks to her and while the pair know their love might not last long, they’re happy to have that brief moment of passion. Besides the romantic lyrics, it’s a stunning duet that really builds and shows off the range of both characters.

2. ‘I’ll Cover You’ (Rent)

Angel and Collins promise to care for and protect each other whatever life throws at them in this wonderfully life-affirming declaration of love and cheap housing agreements. The song gets a reprise later on in the musical but it’s much, much sadder by that point, so make sure you pick the right version or you’ll end up in tears.

3. ‘Can You Feel The Love Tonight?’ (The Lion King)

Truly, there is no greater love than that between a lion and another lion. The best thing about this song is that it’s not actually sung by those ‘in love’, but by pals on the periphery, watching on as their friends admit their feelings for each other.

4. ‘Falling Slowly’ (Once)

Laced with bittersweet undertones of lost loves and broken hearts, the anthemic ‘Falling Slowly’ is a spine-tinglingly haunting song for new, fledgling lovers. The song also won an Oscar, and was covered by The Frames, Ill Divo and Adam Levine.

5. ‘All I Ask Of You’ (The Phantom of the Opera)

Christine and Raoul admit their true feelings, while the Phantom watches on from the shadows – a hauntingly beautiful song to close out Act One of this classic musical. Good for fans of unrequited love, too, if you’re planning on using this playlist an awkward mixtape.

6. ‘Helpless’ (Hamilton)

The moment when Eliza Schuyler meets Alexander Hamilton for the first time is inspired by Beyonce, Alicia Keyes, Brandy and Cole Porter, and it sets the tone for the pair’s sumptuous (and, much later, heartbreaking) romance throughout the show.

7. ‘A Whole New World’ (Aladdin)

The Disney classic peaks when Princess Jasmine and her ‘street rat’ take to the skies and fall madly in love on a flying carpet. Make sure you put the right version on your playlist or you might find the Katie Price and Peter Andre cover by mistake.

8. ‘Paradise By The Dashboard Light’ (Bat Out of Hell)

Meat Loaf sadly left us this year, but the rock opera Bat Out of Hell stands as a perfect tribute to his incredible music. The show packs enough power ballads to keep the fires burning in even the worst relationship, but ‘Paradise By The Dashboard Light’ is the only 8-minute opus about car sex, baseball and Danny DeVito.

9. ‘On My Own’ (Les Misérables)

Eponine wanders the streets imaging the life that could have been, if only her beloved Marius hadn’t fallen in love with someone else and joined the French revolution. Typical, eh?!—still, a wonderfully romantic song.

10. ‘And I Am Telling You I’m Not Going’ (Dreamgirls)

When Effie White tells her lover Curtis that she can’t live without him, she does it in style. This song, which has transcended the context of the show to become a belter for the lovelorn, is a real musical theatre classic and rightly deserves its place on any love song list.

11. ‘I Can Hear The Bells’ (Hairspray)

The heroic Tracy Turnblad fantasises about her perfect marriage to the gorgeous Link Larkin – every schoolgirls’ biggest fantasy. The ultimate ode to love, lust, marriage and children at first sight.

12. ‘It Takes Two’ (Into The Woods)

After endless bickering and toing and froing over how to solve their problems, the Baker and his Wife admit they really have kneaded each other all along. Sorry, needed.

13. ‘The Last Night Of The World’ (Miss Saigon)

Falling in love against the backdrop of the fall of Saigon was never going to be easy, but Chris and Kim continue to live in hope here as they admit their true feelings. Heartbreaking stuff.

14. ‘Lay All Your Love On Me’ (Mamma Mia!)

The musical based on ABBA’s greatest hits is full of pop ditties and ensemble pieces. Sure, there’s other big love song numbers (who can forget Pierce Brosnan’s ‘S.O.S.’ from the film version…), but this track is pop perfection, full of the exuberance of young love, and the perfect way to end any night.