Roundabout Theatre Company Sets 'Caroline, or Change' and 'A Soldier's Play'

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From left: David Alan Grier, Blair Underwood, Sharon D. Clarke

The final two Broadway productions in the company's season will open in 2020.

The Roundabout Theatre Company has announced the final two Broadway productions for their current season: A Soldier's Play at American Airlines Theatre, bowing Jan. 21, 2020, and Caroline, or Change, opening April 7 at Studio 54.

Roundabout's staging of A Soldier's Play will be the first Broadway production of Charles Fuller's Pulitzer Prize-winning drama. Directed by Kenny Leon (a Tony winner for A Raisin in the Sun), it will star David Alan Grier (Porgy and Bess) as Sergeant Vernon C. Waters and Blair Underwood (A Streetcar Named Desire) as Captain Richard Davenport, with further casting to be announced.

Fuller's play is set in 1944, when a black sergeant is murdered on an Army base in Louisiana, and an investigator must go up against his white leadership to unravel the crime. Previews for the limited Broadway engagement are set to begin Dec. 27.

A Soldier's Play premiered off-Broadway in 1981 at the Negro Ensemble Company and starred Adolph Caesar, Denzel Washington, Larry B. Riley, Samuel L. Jackson, Peter Friedman and Charles Brown. The production won the New York Drama Critics’ Circle and Obie awards for best play, as well as a Pulitzer Prize.

A 1984 film version was adapted by Fuller for the screen, picking up Academy Award and Golden Globe nominations for best picture and screenplay. Washington, Riley and Caesar reprised their roles for the film, with Caesar earning a supporting actor Oscar nod. A 2005 off-Broadway revival featured Taye Diggs, Anthony Mackie and Steven Pasquale.

The upcoming production's design team will include sets by Derek McLane, costumes by Dede Ayite, lighting by Allen Lee Hughes and sound by Dan Moses Schreier.

Direct from a run on London's West End, Caroline, or Change features a book and lyrics by Tony Kushner (Angels in America), music by Jeanine Tesori (Fun Home), direction by Michael Longhurst and choreography by Ann Yee.

Sharon D. Clarke reprises her 2019 Olivier Award performance in the title role, an African-American maid whose world in 1963 Louisiana ripples with change. The creative team will include sets and costumes by Fly Davis, lighting by Jack Knowles, sound by Paul Arditti, music supervision by Nigel Lilley and music direction by Chris Fenwick. Previews of Caroline are set to begin March 13.

The transfer marks the first Broadway revival for the show, which was nominated for six Tonys in its 2004 premiere, winning best featured actress in a musical for Anika Noni Rose. Additional casting for the upcoming production is to be announced.

Roundabout's 2019-2020 Broadway season will also showcase Tennessee Williams' The Rose Tattoo, starring Marisa Tomei and directed by Trip Cullman, as well as Noah Haidle's Birthday Candles, starring Debra Messing and directed by Vivienne Benesch.