“Pass Over,” a searing play about two Black males trapped by existential dread in a world the place too a lot of their friends have been killed by police, is coming to Broadway.
A workforce of producers who embody the playwright, Antoinette Chinonye Nwandu, mentioned Tuesday that they’d mount a brand new model of the play on the August Wilson Theater on Broadway later this yr. The manufacturing can be directed by Danya Taymor.
The play, an 85-minute riff on “Waiting for Godot,” started its life in 2017, directed by Taymor at Steppenwolf Theater Company in Chicago. That manufacturing was filmed for Amazon Prime Video by Spike Lee, and in 2018 the play ran at Lincoln Center Theater. It has since had a number of different productions, together with at the Kiln Theater in London.
The play, wherein two associates go time on a metropolis road nook, sharing fears and desires, was prompted partially by the demise of Trayvon Martin, and attracts on the Book of Exodus. Nwandu reworked the play’s ending between the Steppenwolf and Lincoln Center productions, and mentioned she now plans to achieve this once more. In earlier variations, one of many two principal characters died on the finish; Nwandu mentioned that within the Broadway model, they may each survive.
“I wrote the other versions of the play out of anger, and out of a desire to shock white people into caring about the fact that Black lives matter,” Nwandu mentioned. “Now I’m ready to step back from that role of needing to indict white America. White America has been indicted, and continues to be indicted, by the actual death of Black people, so nobody needs to see that theatrically rendered anymore.”
She mentioned the play “is still largely a lament,” however that she is now envisioning a tonal shift on the finish, as she thinks about her personal emotional well-being and that of her viewers. “We all know we need some sort of communal healing,” she mentioned. “We have to witness. We have to grieve. And we have to heal, so we can go out into the world and fight these battles.”
The Broadway manufacturing can have an eclectic producing workforce: Matt Ross, a longtime theater publicist who’s turning into extra energetic as a producer; Jujamcyn Theaters, the corporate that operates the August Wilson Theater; Lincoln Center Theater, the nonprofit that offered the play Off Broadway; Concord Theatricals, a publishing and licensing firm with a rising footprint within the theater world; Renee Montgomery, a retired basketball participant who’s an owner of the Atlanta Dream W.N.B.A. team; the actor Blair Underwood; Madeleine Foster Bersin, who, together with Ross, was a part of the manufacturing workforce for “What the Constitution Means to Me”; and Nwandu.
The forged has not but been introduced.