2019 Broadway fall season preview of plays: Which will be remembered by the Tony Awards?

A new Broadway season is gearing up, and there are currently nine productions of plays (seven new, two revivals) set to open this fall. Could we be seeing any of them contend at this year’s Tony Awards? Below, we recap the plot of each play as well as the awards history of its author, cast, creative types, the opening, and (where applicable) closing dates.

“Betrayal” (opens September 5; closes December 8)
In the third Broadway revival of Harold Pinter’s 1978 award-winning play, the story charts a compelling seven-year romance, thrillingly captured in reverse chronological order.

The original Broadway production received Tony nominations for star Blythe Danner and director Peter Hall. This production is coming in after a successful run in London’s West End earlier this year. The cast includes Emmy nominee Tom Hiddleston (“The Night Manager,” 2016), Zawe Ashton, SAG winner Charlie Cox (“Boardwalk Empire,” 2012), and is directed by Laurence Olivier Award winner Jamie Lloyd (“The Pride,” 2009).

“The Height of the Storm” (opens September 24; closes November 17)
In this new play by Tony nominee Florian Zeller (“The Father,” 2016), for 50 years, the lives of André and Madeleine have been filled with the everyday pleasures and unfathomable mysteries of an enduring marriage. That is until suddenly their life together begins to unravel, and this loving relationship is faced with the inevitability of change. 

This production presented by Manhattan Theatre Club is coming in after a successful run in the West End last year. The cast includes two-time Tony winner Jonathan Pryce (“Comedians,” 1977; “Miss Saigon,” 1991), four-time Tony nominee Eileen Atkins, Amanda Drew, James Hillier, Outer Critics Circle nominee Lisa O’Hare (“A Gentleman’s Guide to Love & Murder”), BAFTA nominee Lucy Cohu (“The Queen’s Sister,” 2006), and is directed by Tony nominee Jonathan Kent (“Long Day’s Journey Into Night,” 2016).

“The Great Society” (opens October 1; closes December 29)
In Robert Schenkkan’s sequel to his 2014 Tony-winning play, “All the Way,” the story follows president Lyndon B. Johnson’s epic triumph in a landslide election to the agonizing decision not to run for re-election just three years later. It was an era that would define history forever: the rise of the Civil Rights Movement, the deaths of Martin Luther King, Jr. and Robert F. Kennedy, the destruction of Vietnam and the creation of some of the greatest social programs America has ever known—with one man at the center of it all: LBJ.

The production presented by Lincoln Center Theater stars Emmy winner Brian Cox (“Nuremberg,” 2001), three-time Tony nominee Marc Kudisch (“Thoroughly Modern Millie,” 2002; “Chitty Chitty Bang Bang,” 2005; “9 to 5,” 2009), Emmy winner Richard Thomas (“The Waltons,” 1973), Grantham Coleman, Tony nominee Bryce Pinkham (“A Gentleman’s Guide to Love & Murder”), Emmy winner Gordon Clapp (“NYPD Blue,” 1998), Tony winner Frank Wood (“Side Man,” 1999), Barbara Garrick (“A Thousand Clowns,” 2001), Tony nominee David Garrison (“A Day in Hollywood/A Night in the Ukraine,” 1980), Matthew Rauch (“Junk,” 2017), Marchánt Davis, Brian Dykstra, Ty Jones, Christopher Livingston, Angela Pierce, Nikkole Salter, Tramell Tillman, and is directed by Drama Desk nominee Bill Rauch (“All the Way”).

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“Slave Play” (opens October 6; closes January 5, 2020)
In this new play by Jeremy O. Harris, the old South lives on at the MacGregor Plantation-in the breeze, in the cotton fields…and in the crack of the whip. It’s an antebellum fever-dream, where fear and desire entwine in the looming shadow of the Master’s House. Jim trembles as Kaneisha handles melons in the cottage, Alana perspires in time with the plucking of Phillip’s fiddle in the boudoir, while Dustin cowers at the heel of Gary’s big, black boot in the barn. Nothing is as it seems, and yet everything is as it seems.

This production is coming in after a successful run at Off-Broadway’s New York Theatre Workshop last year. The cast includes Drama Desk nominee Paul Alexander Nolan (“Bright Star,” 2016), Joaquina Kalukango (“The Color Purple,” 2015), Ato Blankson-Wood (“Lysistrata Jones,” 2011), James Cusati-Moyer (“Six Degrees of Separation,” 2017), Sullivan Jones, Chalia La Tour, Irene Sofia Lucio, Annie McNamara, and is directed by Robert O’Hara.

“Linda Vista” (opens October 10; closes November 10)
In the Broadway premiere of this play by Tony & Pulitzer Prize winner Tracy Letts (“August: Osage County,” 2008), the story takes a brutal look at Wheeler, a 50-year-old divorcee in the throes of a mid-life spiral. Just out of his ex-wife’s garage and into a place of his own, Wheeler starts on a path toward self-discovery—navigating blind dates, old friends and new love.

The production presented by Second Stage Theater stars Ian Barford (“The Curious Incident of the Dog in the Night-Time,” 2014), Sally Murphy (“Carousel,” 1994), Caroline Neff (“Airline Highway,” 2015), Chantal Thuy, Jim True-Frost (“The Rivals,” 2004), Cory Vander Broek, Troy West, and is directed by Drama Desk nominee Dexter Bullard (Off-Broadway’s “Bug,” 2004).

“The Rose Tattoo” (opens October 15; closes December 8)
In the third Broadway revival of Tennessee Williams’ 1951 play, the story follows a widow who rekindles her desire for love, lust and life in the arms of a fiery suitor.

The original production which starred Marueen Stapelton and Eli Wallach won four Tony Awards (including Best Play). It was then brought to the big screen in 1955, where it received 8 Academy Award nominations (including Best Picture). This production presented by Roundabout Theatre Company stars Oscar winner Marisa Tomei (“My Cousin Vinny,” 1992), Emun Elliott, Cassie Beck (“The Humans,” 2016), Andréa Burns (“In the Heights,” 2008), Greg Hildrith (“Frozen,” 2018), Drama Desk nominee Carolyn Mignini (“Tintypes,” 1980), Paige Gilbert, Alexander Bello (“All My Sons,” 2019), Tina Benko (“The Cherry Orchard,” 2016), Susan Cella, Isabella Iannelli, Ellyn Marie Marsh, Drama Desk nominee Portia (Off-Broadway’s “McReele,” 2005), Ella Rubin, Jennifer Sanchez, three-time SAG Winner Constance Shulman (“Orange is the New Black,” 2015-17), Burke Swanson, Jacob Michael Laval, and is directed by Drama Desk nominee Trip Cullman (Off-Broadway’s “A Small Fire,” 2011).

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“The Sound Inside” (opens October 17; closes January 12, 2020)
In this new play by Pulitzer Prize finalist Adam Rapp (“Red Light Winter,” 2006), the story follows Bella Baird, an accomplished professor at an Ivy League university who prizes her solitude. But when she faces a challenge she cannot tackle alone, she allies herself with a brilliant and mysterious student, Christopher.

The production presented by Lincoln Center Theater stars Tony winner Mary-Louise Parker (“Proof,” 2001), Will Hochman, and is directed by Tony winner David Cromer (“The Band’s Visit,” 2018).

“The Inheritance” (previews begin September 27; opens November 17)
In this new play by Matthew Lopez inspired by E.M. Forster’s 1910 novel, “Howards End,” the story follows the interlinking lives of three generations of gay men searching for a community of their own – and a place to call home.

This production is coming in after a successful run in the West End, where it won four Olivier Awards (including Best New Play). The cast includes Kyle Soller, Samuel H. Levine, Paul Hilton, Andrew Burnap, Tony winner John Benjamin Hickey (“The Normal Heart,” 2011), two-time Tony nominee Lois Smith (“The Grapes of Wrath,” 1990; “Buried Child,” 1996), Jonathan Burke, Jordan Barbour, Darryl Gene Daughtry, Jr., Dylan Frederick, Kyle Harris, Arturo Luis Soria, Carson McCalley, and is directed by two-time Tony winner Stephen Daldry (“An Inspector Calls”, 1994; “Billy Elliot,” 2009).

“A Christmas Carol” (opens November 20; closes January 5, 2020)
In this new stage adaptation of Charles Dickens’ 1843 novella of the same name, the story follows Ebenezer Scrooge, an elderly miser who is visited by the ghost of his former business partner Jacob Marley and the spirits of Christmas Past, Present and Yet to Come. After their visits, Scrooge is transformed into a kinder, gentler man.

Adapted for the stage by Tony winner Jack Thorne (“Harry Potter & the Cursed Child,” 2018), this production is coming in after successful runs in the West End. The Broadway premiere stars Campbell Scott (whose father, George C. Scott, previously earned an Emmy nomination for playing Scrooge in the 1984 TV movie adaptation), and is directed by Tony winner Matthew Warchus (“God of Carnage,” 2009).

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