SUZAN-LORI PARKS’ TOPDOG/UNDERDOG - Previews begin September 27 - AmNews Curtain Raiser


Tuesday, June 14, 2022

SUZAN-LORI PARKS’ TOPDOG/UNDERDOG - Previews begin September 27






Directed by Tony Award-winner



Strictly Limited Engagement on Broadway This Fall


Previews begin September 27

Opening on October 20

At the John Golden Theatre


Tickets Go on Sale Juneteenth National Independence Day

Monday, June 20 at 10am



“Suzan-Lori Parks is a remarkable playwright. She is an original whose fierce intelligence, and fearless approach to craft, subvert theatrical convention and produce a mature and inimitable art that is as exciting as it is fresh. I am standing with my hat in the air.”

– August Wilson


A writer who crosses cultural boundaries, as well as social ones, she has had her work produced everywhere, from the smallest avant-garde stages to Broadway. Her voice is both idiosyncratic and eerily familiar, one of few in the popular theatre to fully exploit the power of spoken Black English.”

- Hilton Als, The New Yorker


“TOPDOG/UNDERDOG is as exciting as any new play from a young American since Tony Kushner’s Angels in America. Both a vivid, present-tense family portrait and an endlessly reverberating allegory, TOPDOG/UNDERDOG plies the fine theatrical art of deception to convey the dangers of role-playing in a society in which race is a performance and prison.”

– Ben Brantley, The New York Times


TOPDOG/UNDERDOG explores the multiple layers of sibling competition and intimacy -- all that love wrapped in hate wrapped in love. But the play is a more complicated and heartbreaking work. Its soul is nourished by the sad, shared loneliness and disappointment of this Black latter-day Booth and Lincoln, so named by their long-vanished father.”

– Peter Marks, The Washington Post


“In TOPDOG/UNDERDOG history screams and bleeds in this work of Parks’ as intensely as ever.”

– Alisa Solomon, The Village Voice


TOPDOG/UNDERDOG is demandingly smart, dark and resonant – an intense examination of who’s up/who’s down tension, her fascination with questions of black/white, older brother/younger brother, freedom/slavery, and family myth past/reality present.”

– Lisa Schwarzbaum, Entertainment Weekly  



SUZAN-LORI PARKS’ Pulitzer Prize-winning masterpiece, TOPDOG/UNDERDOG, will return to Broadway this Fall in a 20th Anniversary Production, directed by Tony Award-winner KENNY LEON and starring Tony Award-nominee COREY HAWKINS (In the Heights, The Tragedy of Macbeth) and Emmy Award-winner YAHYA ABDUL-MATEEN II (Watchmen, Candyman) as brothers Lincoln and Booth.


The strictly limited 16-week engagement will begin previews on Tuesday, September 27th at the John Golden Theatre (252 West 45th Street). The production will officially open on Thursday, October 20th. Tickets will go on sale at on Monday, June 20th, Juneteenth National Independence Day. The production is being produced by David Stone, LaChanze, Rashad V. Chambers, Marc Platt, Debra Martin Chase, and the Shubert Organization.


SUZAN-LORI PARKS’ TOPDOG/UNDERDOG, a darkly comic fable of brotherly love and family identity, tells the story of two brothers, Lincoln (Hawkins) and Booth (Abdul-Mateen II), names given to them as a joke by their father. Haunted by the past and their obsession with the street con game, three-card monte, the brothers come to learn the true nature of their history.


"I’m so blessed that TOPDOG is back on Broadway! What a beautiful opportunity to share this work with new audiences. And, wow, how many writers get to be here for a Broadway revival of their work? I’m grateful and thrilled,” said SUZAN-LORI PARKS. “And doing the show with Kenny, Yahya, and Corey — that’s icing on the gravy, baby!”


SUZAN-LORI PARKS’ TOPDOG/UNDERDOG will feature scenic design by Arnulfo Maldonado, costume design by Dede Ayite, lighting design by Allen Lee Hughes, and sound design by Justin Ellington.  Casting is by Calleri Jensen Davis. Kamra Jacobs will be the Production Stage Manager.


SUZAN-LORI PARKS is the first Black woman to win the Pulitzer Prize for Drama, an award she received in 2002 for TOPDOG/UNDERDOGIn 2018, the play was named “The Greatest American Play of the Past 25 Years” by The New York Times. This unprecedented distinction was awarded unanimously by a special panel of critics convened to examine and rank the most important plays written and produced in the previous 25 years. In addition, when Ben Brantley retired as chief theatre critic for The New York Times, he called TOPDOG/UNDERDOG the best play he reviewed during his tenure.


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