Common to make Broadway debut with ‘Between Riverside and Crazy’

The Emmy-, Grammy-, and Oscar-winning performer has joined the cast of the Pulitzer Prize-winning dark comedy, which opens this fall.

Common will be making his Broadway debut this fall. The rapper-actor has been cast in the Pulitzer Prize-winning play, Stephen Adly Guirgis’ “Between Riverside and Crazy,” the Second Stage Theater has announced.

The play, which originated as an Off-Broadway production in 2015 at the Tony Kiser Theater, will retain several original cast members in its move to Broadway at Second Stage’s Hayes Theater. The returning members include Victor Almanzar, Elizabeth Canavan, Rosal Colón, Liza Colón-Zayas, Tony Award nominee Stephen McKinley Henderson and Michael Rispoli. Common will play the role of Junior.

“Between Riverside and Crazy” is a dark comedy that follows the recently paroled Junior and his ex-cop and recent widower father, Walter “Pops” Washington (Henderson). Pops is trying to hold on to his apartment, one of the last rent-stabilized apartments on Riverside Drive. They must contend with City Hall, the landlord, old wounds, and sketchy neighbors as they realize that the old days are behind them.

Common will make his Broadway debut this fall in Stephen Adly Guirgis’ “Between Riverside and Crazy.” (Photo by Ilya S. Savenok/Getty Images for Common’s Book Tour In New York)

Common’s Broadway debut unofficially signals his bid to become an EGOT (Emmy Grammy Oscar Tony) winner. A Tony is all that stands between the artist and membership in the prestigious club.

The Chicago MC won a 2017 Emmy Award for Outstanding Original Music and Lyrics for his song, “Letter to the Free,” from the documentary, “13th.” He has won three Grammy Awards in his career, the latest in 2014 for Best Song Written for Visual Media for “Glory” from the motion picture, “Selma.” That same year, he also won the Best Original Song Oscar for “Glory.”

While “Between Riverside and Crazy” marks his Broadway debut, Common has a lengthy acting career. Over the years, he’s appeared on TV shows and in several films, including “Hell on Wheels,” “American Gangster,” “Just Wright,” “Smokin’ Aces” and the “John Wick” franchise.

“Between Riverside and Crazy,” which Austin Pendleton directs, starts previews on Nov. 30 before officially opening on Dec. 19.

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