Stars including Cameron Diaz, Ben Stiller and Joan Rivers turned out to watch the opening night performance at the Broadway Theatre in New York.
The musical, based on the children's books by William Steig and the Oscar-winning Dreamworks film, tells the story of a swamp-dwelling ogre.
Diaz, who voiced Princess Fiona in the animated version, said she was impressed by the show.
"It's great to see all of the actors playing it together because when we do it for the animated we never see each other," she said.
"We don't work with one another - we all record separately and then they put it all together so you don't really get the dynamics and chemistry that you get with other actors... it's a lot of fun to watch."
However, when asked if she would consider joining the Broadway cast, she said: "No, absolutely not. What they do up there... is to me, impossible. It's wonderful, though."
A fourth Shrek film will open in 2010.