In An Octoroon, Judge Peyton is dead, and his plantation Terrebonne is in financial ruins. Peyton's handsome nephew George arrives as heir apparent, and quickly falls in love with Zoe, a beautiful "octoroon." But, the evil overseer M'Closky has other plans — for both Terrebonne and Zoe.
On December 5, 1859, Dion Boucicault's An Octoroon, based on the novel The Quadroon by Thomas Mayne Reid, opened at the Winter Garden Theatre in New York City. One of the few contemporary plays about slavery in its time, it was quickly christened the great dramatic sensation of the season.
Branden Jacobs-Jenkins collides the sensational plot and heightened theatrical gestures of Boucicault's original with contemporary language and a dueling set of narrators. His An Octoroon is a piece that's firmly about us — here and now.