Kennedy Center Announces 2021 Broadway Season

André De Shields in Hadestown. Photo: Matthew Murphy

In anticipation of reopening its doors and resuming mainstage performances, the John F. Kennedy Center for the Performing Arts has announced the 2021 Broadway season lineup.

“Over the past four months I’ve been struck by the heartening proof that we need artists and the arts now more than ever,” said Deborah F. Rutter, President of the Kennedy Center. “The Center has chosen to move forward with optimism balanced by safety and constant re-evaluation as the effects of the pandemic continue to evolve. Even with a shortened season, the Kennedy Center strives to provide a broad range of world-class arts to the widest possible audience—in-person and digitally. Our supporters and patrons have given us strength during these unusual times; as the coming months unfold, we are exceedingly grateful for the patience, flexibility, and trust of our audiences.”

The 2021 season of theater will host some of Broadway’s biggest hits and revivals. The season begins in May with a new 50th anniversary production of Andrew Lloyd Webber’s and Tim Rice’s groundbreaking rock opera and winner of the Olivier Award for Best Revival, Jesus Christ Superstar. The original hip hop improv sensation created by Thomas Kail, Lin-Manuel Miranda, and Anthony Veneziale, Freestyle Love Supreme, also part of Comedy at the Kennedy Center season, comes to the Eisenhower Theater where suggestions from the audience are spun into instantaneous riffs and full-length musical numbers with no two shows alike as it is created live nightly bringing much joy and laughter as it is performed. The acclaimed and sold-out hit on Broadway is also the subject of the recently released “We Are Freestyle Love Supreme” documentary on Hulu that has earned rave reviews at Sundance. The Tony Award® winner for Best Revival of a Musical, Rodgers and Hammerstein’s Oklahoma! comes to the Eisenhower stage with director Daniel Fish’s re-orchestrated and reimagined production for the 21st century as you’ve never seen or heard before.

The summer continues with the Tony® and Grammy Award®–winning Best Musical, Dear Evan Hansen, as it returns to D.C. from where it first premiered; the critically acclaimed Tony® and Grammy Award®-winning musical The Band’s Visit, a joyously offbeat story, set in a remote town where a band of musicians arrive lost, out of the blue. Under the spell of the desert sky, and with beautiful music perfuming the air, the band brings the town to life in unexpected and tantalizing ways; and Disney’s smash megahit Frozen featuring the wildly popular songs from the original film plus an expanded score with a dozen new musical numbers from the film’s Oscar-winning songwriters. The Tony® and Grammy Award®–winning Best Musical Hadestown, by celebrated singer-songwriter Anaïs Mitchell and innovative director Rachel Chavkin, concludes the season with a love story for today intertwining two mythic tales—that of young dreamers Orpheus and Eurydice, and King Hades and his wife Persephone. In addition, Shear Madness, the interactive comedy whodunit that lets the audience solve the crime, will recommence in January 2021 in the Theater Lab.  

The Center’s acclaimed Broadway Center Stage series will continue in 2021. Productions and dates to be announced.  

The 2021 Kennedy Center Theater Schedule:

Performance DatesTheaterCompany
May 25–June 13, 2021 Opera HouseJesus Christ Superstar
June 8–13, 2021 Eisenhower TheaterFreestyle Love Supreme
June 22–27, 2021 Eisenhower TheaterRodgers and Hammerstein’s Oklahoma! 
June 29–July 18, 2021     Opera HouseDear Evan Hansen
July 28–August 8, 2021       Eisenhower TheaterThe Band’s Visit
July 21–September 5, 2021 Opera HouseDisney’s Frozen  
August 10–September 5, 2021 Eisenhower TheaterHadestown 

The Kennedy Center continues to work in consultation with health and safety experts including consultation with medical experts from George Washington University, the National Institutes of Health, United Health Care, and the Wharton School, national and local guidelines, and in accordance with the District of Columbia’s ReOpen DC guidelines for its reopening plans. As the coronavirus pandemic continues to evolve and as the Center and the nation learns more about best practices for reopening, we are committed to reviewing and updating our risk mitigation protocols on an ongoing basis.

For the most up-to-date information regarding protocols both current and for spring of 2021, please check the Kennedy Center website for all measures to ensure patron safety during this time. These protocols are not an absolute protection against contracting COVID-19.  Patrons assume their own risk by entering the facility.

For more information, please visit: