Father Comes Home From the Wars, Parts 1, 2 & 3


Father Comes Home From the Wars, Parts 1, 2 & 3

Full-Length Play, Drama  /  2f, 8m

Father Comes Home From the Wars is an explosively powerful drama about the mess of war, the cost of freedom, and the heartbreak of love, with all three parts presented in one night.

Father Comes Home From the Wars, Parts 1, 2 & 3

  • Cast Size
    Cast Size
    2f, 8m
  • Duration
    More than 120 minutes (2 hours)
  • SubGenre
    Adaptations (Literature), Period
  • Audience
    Target Audience
    Adult, Teen (Age 14 - 18)
  • Finalist: 2015 Pulitzer Prize for Drama
    Winner! 2015 Edward M. Kennedy Prize for a theatrical work inspired by American history
    Winner! 2015 Obie Award for Playwriting
    Nominee: 2015 Lucille Lortel Award, Outstanding Play
    Suzan-Lori Parks is the recipient of the 1992 Whiting Award for Drama

Licence details
  • Minimum Fee: £69 per performance plus VAT when applicable.

    Please submit a license request to determine availability.
Father Comes Home From the Wars, Parts 1, 2 & 3



Pulitzer Prize and Tony Award-winner Suzan-Lori Parks delivers the stunning first installment of a new American Odyssey, set over the course of the Civil War.

Offered his freedom if he joins his master in the ranks of the Confederacy, Hero, a slave, must choose whether to leave the woman and people he loves for what may be yet another empty promise. As his decision brings him face-to-face with a nation at war with itself, the loved ones Hero left behind debate whether to escape or wait for his return…only to discover that for Hero, free will may have come at a great spiritual cost. Father Comes Home From the Wars is an explosively powerful drama about the mess of war, the cost of freedom, and the heartbreak of love, with all three parts seen in one night. Part 1 introduces us to Hero. In Part 2, a band of rebel soldiers test Hero’s loyalty as the cannons approach. Part 3 finds Hero’s loved ones anxiously awaiting his return.

A devastatingly beautiful dramatic work filled with music, wit, and great lyricism, Father Comes Home From the Wars is an epic tale about holding on to who we are and what we love in a country that both brings us together and rips us apart.

Father Comes Home From The Wars (Parts 1, 2, & 3) was developed at the Public Theater Lab in 2009, and the play received its premiere production in 2014 at The Public Theater, under the direction of Jo Bonney. 
Cast Attributes
  • Role(s) for Black Actor(s)
  • Ensemble cast
  • Reduced casting (Doubling Possible)
  • Flexible casting
  • Multicultural casting
  • Strong Role for Leading Man (Star Vehicle)
Performing Groups
  • Community Theatre
  • Professional Theatre
  • Large Stage
  • Blackbox / Second Stage /Fringe Groups
The CHORUS of Less Than Desirable Slaves:

A COLONEL - in the Rebel Army
SMITH - a captive Union Soldier
HERO - the Colonel’s Slave

  • Time Period American Civil War Era
  • Features Period Costumes
  • Additional Features Play w/ Music
  • Duration More than 120 minutes (2 hours)
  • Cautions
    • Mild Adult Themes


“Extraordinary! The best new play I've seen all year.” – The New York Times

“Extraordinary! The best new play I've seen all year. By turns philosophical and playful, lyrical and earthy, Suzan Lori-Parks's new play swoops, leaps, dives and soars across three endlessly stimulating hours, reimagining a turbulent turning point in American history through a cockeyed contemporary lens. The finest work yet from this gifted writer... The wonder of Ms. Parks’s achievement is how smoothly she blends the high and the low, the serious and the humorous, the melodramatic and the grittily realistic.  At once an epic poem, a moving personal drama about one man’s soul struggle, and a seriocomic mediation on liberty, loyalty and identity.” – The New York Times, Read More

“Thrilling! A masterpiece. Heartbreakingly individual, in just the way that history itself is... Suzan-Lori Parks exquisitely twists the plot. She makes us feel as if we are seeing the dreadful dilemmas not just of slavery but of emancipation for the first time.” – New York Magazine, Read More

“Grade A... Stunning. That rare work of art that bears the heavy burden of its subject matter, but carries it lightly... Suzan-Lori Parks brings the full force of her dramatic power. She elevates her themes with echoes of classic literature while at the same time doubling down on comedy.” – Entertainment Weekly, Read More

“Provocative, rich and irreverently funny.” – New York Post, Read More

“Brilliant, beautiful & stunning... This haunting work is funny and tragic, whimsical and lacerating, poetic and poignant, navigating its radical tonal shifts with fluidity and grace. It plugs historical experience directly into the socket of contemporary life.” – The Hollywood Reporter, Read More

“Triumphant! Overloaded with soaring language and provocative debate.” – The Huffington Post, Read More


Scene Study and Classroom Reading: Plays for Colleges and Universities
by Becca Schlossberg
August 23, 2019

Suzan-Lori Parks’ FATHER COMES HOME FROM THE WARS Wins Kennedy Prize
by Courtney Kochuba
February 24, 2015

Suzan-Lori Parks’ FATHER COMES HOME… Named Pulitzer Finalist 
by Courtney Kochuba
April 20, 2015

The Shift of Cultural Conversation: FATHER COMES HOME FROM THE WARS
by Ben Coleman
August 11, 2016


  • Father Comes Home from the Wars Trailer

  • Suzan-Lori Parks and Oskar Eustis Interview



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Suzan-Lori Parks

Named one of Time magazine’s “100 Innovators for the Next New Wave,” in 2002 Suzan-Lori Parks became the first African American woman to receive the Pulitzer Prize in Drama for her Broadway hit Topdog/Underdog.

A MacArthur “Genius” Award recipient, she has also been awarded gr ...

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