The book and lyrics of the extraordinary musical from the Pulitzer Prize-winning author of Angels in America.
1963, Louisiana. The destruction of a Confederate statue might just signal that change is in the air. But, whatever the progress of the civil rights movement, things seem just the same in the Gellman household – for now at least.
Caroline, the black maid to the family, is struggling to stay afloat – emotionally and economically. Noah, the eight-year-old son of her employer, tries to make sense of the world following the death of his mother and his father’s remarriage. When his stepmother comes up with a way for Caroline to take a little more money home, the consequences for Caroline and Noah’s relationship are not what anybody might have expected…
Caroline, or Change is an uplifting and profound portrait of America at a time of momentous social upheaval.
The musical, with book and lyrics by Tony Kushner and music by Jeanine Tesori, was first performed at New York’s Off-Broadway Public Theater, where it opened in November 2003, transferring to the Eugene O’Neill Theatre on Broadway in May 2004.
It received its British premiere at the National Theatre in 2006 and won the Olivier Award for Best New Musical. This edition was published alongside the Chichester Festival Theatre production, which transferred to Hampstead Theatre, London, in 2018.
‘Extraordinary… Perhaps no one short of the author of Angels in America could pull this off… you feel that mixture of terror and rapture that arrives on those rare occasions in theatre and in life when you genuinely don’t know what’s going to happen next’ New York Times
‘Extraordinary… blends socio-historical breadth with intoxicating imagination’
— The Times
‘A modern masterpiece of considerable heft’
— Evening Standard
‘Magnificent… a thought-provoking and satisfying joy’
‘Fantastic… Kushner’s writing achieves something rare: it points to hope, while issuing a reminder that what looks like change can be just going round in so many circles’
— Time Out, London
‘Extraordinary… Perhaps no one short of the author of Angels in America could pull this off… you feel that mixture of terror and rapture that arrives on those rare occasions in theatre and in life when you genuinely don’t know what’s going to happen next’
— New York Times
‘Groundbreaking, daring, beautiful and profoundly humane. The best show of the year’
— Time Out New York
‘Amazing piece of music-theatre… combines great dramatic intensity with wild flights of fantasy and music of thrilling variety and strength… the daring mixture of whimsy, passion and radical politics succeeds triumphantly’
— Daily Telegraph
Best Musical, Critics Circle Awards
Best New Musical, Olivier Awards