Broadway plays to see this fall
Discover all the new plays and revivals coming to New York this season.
Spring usually sees the premieres of lots of new Broadway musicals, but in the fall, the play's the thing. (There are still musicals opening, too.) From an epic play about a Jewish family in the 20th century, to a fantasia about Black people on a mass exodus from America, to a revival of a beloved August Wilson play starring Samuel L. Jackson, this season's plays on Broadway aren't just big-budget. They're just plain big, ambitious, and indicative of the flourishing state of plays on Broadway.
In short, go see a play this fall — or several. From comedies to dramas, new works to revivals, there are plenty of choices for everyone's taste. Here is a rundown of all the Broadway plays opening this fall, in order of when performances begin.
Cost of Living
This play by Martyna Mayok, making her Broadway debut, won the 2018 Pulitzer Prize for Drama. It is about two disabled people and their caregivers, who end up supporting each other in unexpected ways. Cost of Living was originally produced off Broadway in 2017 with authentic casting: Gregg Mozgala has cerebral palsy, and Katy Sullivan is a double leg amputee. Mozgala and Sullivan reprise their roles on Broadway in this touching play about the day-to-day life of living with a disability and the importance of maintaining human connection, no matter what life has dealt us. Cost of Living begins performances at the Samuel J. Friedman Theatre on September 13.
This new play by British playwright Tom Stoppard has been described as "Stoppard's Schindler's List" and had a sold-out run on the West End. In two hours and with 38 actors, Leopoldstadt spans over 50 years in the life of one Jewish family. It opens in 1899 in Vienna and ends in 1955 after the Holocaust. Stoppard based the play on his own family's history (he had four grandparents who died in Nazi concentration camps). This is likely to be Stoppard's last play, so come send off the beloved, multi-award-winning playwright by seeing Leopoldstadt. Leopoldstadt begins performances at the Longacre Theatre on September 14.
Death of a Salesman
This classic Arthur Miller play probably needs no introduction (after all, you probably read it in high school). It is about a traveling salesman at the end of his career, realizing he may have wasted his life. This revival is notable for featuring a Black family at its center, which includes Tony Award winner Wendell Pierce (The Wire), Tony nominee Sharon D Clarke (Caroline, or Change), and Tony winner André De Shields (Hadestown). If you thought you knew Death of a Salesman, you will see it with fresh eyes this time. Death of a Salesman begins performances at the Hudson Theatre on September 17.
The Piano Lesson
This classic August Wilson play, a winner of the 1990 Pulitzer Prize for Drama, is getting its first revival. The Piano Lesson is set in 1936 in Pittsburgh after the Great Depression and is about a Black family debating what to do with their heirloom piano: whether to sell it or keep it. The cast for this revival is stacked: Samuel L. Jackson (The Avengers), Danielle Brooks (Orange is the New Black), and John David Washington (BlacKkKlansman). Jackson's wife, LaTanya Richardson Jackson, is also directing The Piano Lesson, making her the first Black woman to direct an August Wilson show on Broadway. The Piano Lesson begins performances at the Ethel Barrymore Theatre on September 19.
Suzan-Lori Parks's play Topdog/Underdog first played on Broadway in 2002 after winning the Pulitzer Prize for Drama (Parks was the first Black woman to win the prestigious award). The play is a popular one in theatre circles, with The New York Times calling it "the greatest American play of the past 25 years" in 2018. Topdog/Underdog is getting a 20th-anniversary revival starring Corey Hawkins (In the Heights) and Yahya Abdul-Mateen II (Watchmen). The play is about two troubled brothers, Lincoln and Booth, who only know how to con their way through life. Topdog/Underdog begins performances at the Golden Theatre on September 27.
Take Me Out
Take Me Out won two Tony Awards last season, including Best Revival of a Play. Audiences could not get enough of Richard Greenberg's play about homophobia in professional baseball, and neither could the actors. The play is returning to Broadway for an encore engagement, with two heavy hitters from the previous cast intact: Tony nominee Jesse Williams (Grey's Anatomy) and Tony winner Jesse Tyler Ferguson (Modern Family). Take yourself out to the ballgame when Take Me Out beings performances at the Gerald Schoenfeld Theatre on October 27.
Ain't No Mo'
Ain't No Mo' has a seemingly bizarre premise: What if Black Americans decided to avert racism by leaving America and going back to Africa on the government's dime? Jordan E. Cooper's satiric play Ain't No Mo' left audiences shook when it premiered in 2019 Off Broadway — think the bawdiness of A Black Lady Sketch Show with the acerbic social commentary of Sorry to Bother You. With the help of Oscar-winning producer Lee Daniels, Ain't No Mo' is coming to Broadway, and Cooper is starring in his play as a colorful flight attendant in a gigantic pink wig. If you want to see the birth of a new theatre star, get a ticket to Ain't No Mo', beginning performances at the Belasco Theatre on November 3.
Ohio State Murders
This play by Adrienne Kennedy isn't technically new; it first premiered in 1992 in Cleveland. But it is Kennedy's first play on Broadway, with Kennedy making her very belated Broadway debut at age 91. Fittingly, her play will be the first to open the newly renamed and refurbished James Earl Jones Theatre (formerly the Cort Theatre). The play follows a professor named Suzanne Alexander, who arrives to deliver a lecture at Ohio State, her alma mater, and is part of a tragedy that occurs on campus. Six-time Tony winner Audra McDonald plays Suzanne in this taunt and thrilling play; it clocks in at only 75 minutes, so you can see the play with plenty of time for dinner and drinks afterward to process what you saw. Ohio State Murders beings performances November 11.
The Collaboration, by Anthony McCarten, had a well-received run in London's West End earlier this year. It will move to New York with its star-studded cast: intact Paul Bettany (Marvel Cinematic Universe) and Jeremy Pope (Choir Boy, Ain't Too Proud). They will play real-life artists Andy Warhol and Jean-Michel Basquiat, respectively, in a play about the unlikely friendship between two artists of different backgrounds and different generations. Come for the celebrities, stay for the art history lesson. The Collaboration begins performances at the Samuel J. Friedman Theatre on November 29.
Between Riverside and Crazy
Stephen Adly Guirgis's play won the Pulitzer Prize for Drama in 2015 after it premiered Off Broadway. The title of the play is pure New York City: It's set in a rent-stabilized apartment on Riverside Drive on Manhattan's West Side. The play is about a retired New York City policeman who is pursuing a discrimination suit against the NYPD, and is fighting a landlord that wants to evict him and the people he shelters in his home. Between Riverside and Crazy begins performances at the Hayes Theater this fall.
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