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“SEARING! RIVETING! One of the most compelling performances of the young year.” — The Boston Globe
“ASTONISHINGLY POWERFUL! Unforgettable theatre at its best!” — South Shore Critic
“A MUST-SEE! Superbly directed! Very poignant! Firecracker energy!” — WGBH
“Often uproarious - the Huntington revels in Topdog/Underdog.” — WBUR
Suzan-Lori Parks’ thrilling and darkly comic fable of brotherly love and sibling rivalry. Winner of the Pulitzer Prize for Drama! Directed by Tony Award winner Billy Porter (Kinky Boots, The Colored Museum at the Huntington).
“Topdog/Underdog vibrates with the clamor of big ideas, audaciously and exuberantly expressed. Like Invisible Man, Ralph Ellison's landmark novel of 1952, Topdog/Underdog considers nothing less than the existential traps of being African American and male in the United States, the masks that wear the men as well as vice versa.” — The New York Times
Approximate run time: 2 hours and 20 minutes, including one 10-minute intermission.
“I am over the moon about returning to the Huntington with such an important work. I am humbled that both Peter DuBois and Suzan-Lori Parks have entrusted me to interpret this material for a new generation. I promise to make you proud!”— Billy Porter
“Billy Porter directed a sizzling remount of George C. Wolfe’s The Colored Museum in 2015, and I am delighted to welcome him back this spring to direct a major revival of a play that electrified Broadway audiences nearly 15 years ago: Topdog/Underdog. Exploring Suzan-Lori Parks’ dynamic Pulitzer Prize-winning play in 2017 will be extremely timely and impactful. Billy, a triple threat Tony Award winner, has proven that he is a man of boundless talent, and bringing these two brilliant American theatre artists together is a dream.”— Peter DuBois
"Lean in close and watch me now."Watch the trailer for the Huntington's production of Suzan Lori-Parks' Pulitzer Prize-winning Topdog/Underdog.
The rehearsal process for Topdog/Underdog has revealed how incredibly timely and relevant this Pulitzer Prize-winner is. Billy Porter and his cast talk about why Topdog/Underdog is a must-see play right now.
"Real." "Riveting." "It'll take your breath away!" Audiences are spellbound by Topdog/Underdog. Hear what they are saying.
Join us in the rehearsal hall for the first day of Topdog/Underdog.
Go behind the scenes and see how our artisans built Topdog/Underdog.
Meet the cast of the explosive Pulitzer Prize-winning play Topdog/Underdog.
“Thrilling comic drama. Dazzlingly written!” — The New York Times
“Topdog/Underdog is demandingly smart and resonant!” — Entertainment Weekly
Tyrone Mitchell Henderson previously appeared in Topdog/Underdog and Blues for an Alabama Sky at the Huntington. He has also appeared in Bring in ‘da Noise, Bring in ‘da Funk on Broadway. His Off-Broadway credits include Rancho Viejo (Playwrights Horizons), The America Play, Two Noble Kinsmen, and The Tempest (The Public Theater/NYSF), The Piano Lesson (Signature Theatre), and The Public Sings (New York City Center).
Matthew J. Harris recently appeared in Topdog/Underdog and Kirsten Greenidge's Milk Like Sugar at the Huntington. He has regional credits that include In the Heights (Walnut Street Theatre), A Comedy of Errors (Theater at Monmouth), and Twelfth Night (Shakesperience Productions, Inc.). Some of his New York credits include A Midsummer Night’s Dream (The Classical Theatre of Harlem), Macbeth (Pulse Ensemble Theatre), She Calls Me Firefly (New Perspectives Theatre), and Trouble (New York Musical Theatre Festival). His television credits include “Blindspot” and “Person of Interest.” He can also be heard and seen in commercials for Coke Zero, Verizon, Zaxby’s, Footlocker, Bounty, and more. Mr. Harris is also a hip-hop dancer, teacher, and choreographer at Man in Motion maninmotionnyc.com. matthewjharris.net.
Suzan-Lori Parks is one of the most acclaimed playwrights in American drama today. She is the first African American woman to receive the Pulitzer Prize in Drama (for Topdog/Underdog in 2002), is a MacArthur “Genius” Award recipient, was awarded the prestigious Gish Prize for Excellence in the Arts, and was named one of Time magazine’s “100 Innovators for the Next Wave.”
Billy Porter returns to the Huntington having previously directed Topdog/Underdog and The Colored Museum. He is the 2013 Tony, Grammy, Drama Desk, and Outer Critics Circle Award winner for Best Actor in a Musical for his portrayal of Lola in the Best Musical Tony Award-winning Kinky Boots. He was recently seen on Broadway in Shuffle Along, or, the Making of the Musical Sensation of 1921 and All That Followed. Mr. Porter’s one-man show Ghetto Superstar (2005 GLAAD Media Award nomination, Pittsburgh Post-Gazette’s Performer of the Year 2003–2004) debuted at The Public Theater in conjunction with City Theatre of Pittsburgh.
Clint Ramos previously designed sets and/or costumes for Topdog/Underdog, after all the terrible things i do, The Colored Museum, A Raisin in the Sun, Ma Rainey’s Black Bottom, and Ruined at the Huntington. Recent set and/or costume credits include the Broadway productions of Sunday in the Park with George, In Transit, Eclipsed, The Elephant Man (also West End), and Violet.
Driscoll Otto previously designed lights for Topdog/Underdog and The Colored Museum at the Huntington. His Off Broadway credits include Under My Skin and Solving the Riddle. His other New York credits include La Donna del Lago (The Metropolitan Opera), and work with Ars Nova, Mint Theater Company, New Ohio Theatre, La MaMa, Jazz at Lincoln Center, and Gotham Chamber Opera.
Leon Rothenberg designed the sound for Topdog/Underdog and Choice at the Huntington. His Broadway credits include Violet, The Realistic Joneses, The Nance (Tony Award), The Heiress, and Joe Turner’s Come and Gone (Tony Award nomination).
Alaine Alldaffer is also the casting director for Playwrights Horizons, where her credits include Grey Gardens (also for Broadway), Clybourne Park (also for Broadway), and Circle Mirror Transformation (Drama Desk and Obie Awards for Best Ensemble and an Artios Award for casting).
Emily F. McMullen has previously worked on Topdog/Underdog, A Doll's House, Bedroom Farce, Sunday in the Park with George, I Was Most Alive with You, Can You Forgive Her?, Disgraced, A Confederacy of Dunces, A Little Night Music, after all the terrible things I do, The Colored Museum, Vanya and Sonia and Masha and Spike, Awake and Sing!, Guess Who’s Coming to Dinner, Smart People, The Seagull, Venus in Fur, and The Cocktail Hour for the Huntington.
Kevin Schlagle returns to the Huntington after previously working on Topdog/Underdog, Bedroom Farce, Sunday in the Park with George; Can You Forgive Her?; Milk Like Sugar; A Confederacy of Dunces; A Little Night Music; after all the terrible things I do; Come Back, Little Sheba; Vanya and Sonia and Masha and Spike; Smart People; Venus in Fur; Our Town; God of Carnage; Ruined; and Prelude to a Kiss.
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