Paradise Square

Paradise Square

In the slums of Lower Manhattan in 1863, amidst a divided country and a neighborhood crushed by poverty, one extraordinary community was formed. In the Five Points slum, free Blacks and Irish immigrants lived together in something close to harmony — until larger forces tore their corner of the world apart. Now, the new Broadway musical Paradise Square brings the history of Five Points to glorious life. Paradise Square tickets are on sale now.

At the center of Five Points is Paradise Square, a saloon where the neighborhood’s Black and Irish populations drink and dance together. The bar’s regulars are an eclectic bunch: the Black woman owner, her Irish-Catholic sister-in-law, an anti-abolitionist leader, a just-arrived Irish immigrant with mixed feelings about the neighborhood, and a songwriter desperate to make a buck all congregate together. Within this one bar, all their differing visions of what America should be will clash and mix together.  

Paradise Square features a book co-written by Christina Anderson, Marcus Gardley, and Craig Lucas. Paradise Square on Broadway tells the story of a divided America struggling to define its identity, and a moment in history when the country’s best ideals briefly shone through. 

Jason Howland and Nathan Tysen’s Paradise Square also uses additional material by Masi Asare and Larry Kirwan. The score combines original songs with reimaginings of the works of 19th-century American composer Stephen Foster. Foster was a composer of parlor and minstrel tunes and is typically considered as “the father of American music.” The Paradise Square musical score brings a modern eye to the foundational history of American culture.

Paradise Square combines a thrilling contemporary score with Black American juba and Irish step dancing, two dance styles forms which combined in Five Points slum to eventually form the beginnings of American tap dance. Fela! choreographer and dance legend Bill T. Jones choreographs Paradise Square, with direction by Moisés Kaufman.

Paradise Square was first produced at Berkeley Repertory Theatre in 2018. It will play a pre-Broadway tryout in Chicago, before transferring to the Barrymore Theatre on Broadway. Paradise Square tickets are on sale now.

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About Paradise Square:

It’s 1863 and in a 20-block area of Manhattan known as the Five Points, Black and Irish Americans live side by side, work together, marry, and for a brief period realize racial harmony. However, the intensifying Civil War soon results in the first-ever Federal draft, leading to riots as whites are called to enlist while blacks are barred from serving. Will the hard-won bonds of friendship, community, and family in the Five Points prevail or be severed forever?

By:
Christina Anderson, Marcus Gardley, Craig Lucas and Larry Kirwan
Director:
Moises Kaufman
Songs by:
Jason Howland, Nathan Tysen and Masi Asare
Lighting:
Donald Holder
Sound:
Jon Weston
Design:
Allen Moyer
Choreography:
Bill T. Jones
Costume:
Toni-Leslie James
Cast list:
Joaquina Kalukango, Chilina Kennedy, John Dossett, Sidney DuPont, A.J. Shively, Nathaniel Stampley, Gabrielle McClinton, Jacob Fishel, Kevin Dennis, Karen Burthwright, Kennedy Caughell, Dwayne Clark, Garrett Coleman, Colin Cunliffe, Chloe Davis, Bernard Dotson, Jamal Christopher Douglas, Sam Edgerly, Shiloh Goodin, Jacobi Hall, Sean Jenness, Jay McKenzie, Ben Michael, Jason Oremus, Eilis Quinn, Sara Sheperd, Lael van Keuren, Sir Brock Warren and Hailee Kaleem Wright
Paradise Square Performance Dates & Times
Previews from: 
February 22, 2022
Opening date: 
March 20, 2022
Available from: 
February 22, 2022
Booking to: 
November 27, 2022
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Barrymore Theatre

Address:
243 West 47th Street (between Broadway and 8th Avenue), New York, NY 10036
Nearest subway station:
49th Street station

Latest Paradise Square News & Features

Photo credit: Paradise Square (Photos courtesy of The Press Room NYC)
‘Paradise Square’ gets Broadway transfer at Barrymore Theatre
June 7, 2021

Following a 2018 world premiere and an upcoming engagement in Chicago, Paradise Square will receive its Broadway premiere in 2022.