The Book of Mormon is a religious satire musical with book, lyrics, and music by Trey Parker, Robert Lopez, and Matt Stone. Best known for creating the animated comedy South Park, Parker and Stone co-created the music with Lopez, a co-composer/co-lyricist of Avenue Q and Frozen. The Book of Mormon tells the story of two young Mormon missionaries sent to a remote village in northern Uganda, where a brutal warlord is threatening the local population. Naïve and optimistic, the two missionaries try to share the Book of Mormon, one of their scriptures—which only one of them has read—but have trouble connecting with the locals, who are more worried about war, famine, poverty, and AIDS than about religion.
Development on the musical began in 2003, with the trio meeting sporadically to work on the musical for several years after Parker and Stone saw Avenue Q. Parker and Stone grew up in Colorado, and references to The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints had been commonplace in their previous works. For research, the trio took a trip to Salt Lake City to meet with current and former Mormon missionaries. Developmental workshops were staged beginning in 2008. The show's producer, Scott Rudin, opted to open the show directly on Broadway. The LDS Church issued a polite, measured response to the musical, and purchased advertising space in its playbill in later runs. After nearly seven years of development, the show opened on Broadway in March 2011. The Book of Mormon garnered overwhelmingly positive critical response, and set records in ticket sales for the Eugene O'Neill Theatre. The show was awarded nine Tony Awards, one of which was for Best Musical, and a Grammy Award for Best Musical Theater Album. The original Broadway cast recording became the highest-charting Broadway cast album in over four decades, reaching number three on the Billboard charts. The musical premiered in the West End in 2013, and has staged two national tours.