When I first encountered Jeremy O. Harris’ work, I knew he was a playwright to be reckoned with. As a creator, he brings his irreverent style and flair for the dramatic to all aspects of his art practice. His vibrant, multilayered plays—like Daddy and Slave Play, which opened on Broadway in October—invite the audience into volatile worlds where identity politics are parsed out with humor and pathos, leaving us with a heightened sense of awareness. By exposing ancient wounds with the hopes of healing them, Jeremy doesn’t shy away from asking tough and taboo questions about the sexual and emotional lives of the characters in his plays—and in doing so, he forces us to confront our own fears and desires. In this way, his work is both titillating and challenging, and unabashedly human. Jeremy is a playwright with a mission, and he has made it his business to open up Broadway and beyond to a new generation of theatergoers by ensuring that young and diverse audiences have access to contemporary storytelling. By using social media and his forays into the fashion world as new ways to reach and grow audiences, he has expanded the breadth of traditional theater.
Nottage is a two-time Pulitzer Prize–winning playwright