show_topdog.jpg

Topdog/Underdog

 

Suzan-Lori Park's Pulitzer Prize-winning masterpiece, TOPDOG/UNDERDOG, returns to Broadway this Fall in a 20th Anniversary Production, directed by Tony
Award®-winner Kenny Leon.

A darkly comic fable of brotherly love and family identity, TOPDOG/UNDERDOG tells
the story of two brothers, Lincoln and Booth, 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.

Suzan-Lori Park is the first Black woman to win the Pulitzer Prize for Drama, an award she received in 2002 for TOPDOG/UNDERDOG. In 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.

 

“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

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

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