Paradise Blue


Writers: Dominique Morisseau


Show Information

Number of Acts
First Produced
Time & Place
Detroit, Michigan, in a small black community known as Black Bottom on the downtown strip known as Paradise Valley. Paradise Club, 1949.
Cast Size
Ideal for
College/University, Diverse Cast, Mature Audiences, Regional Theatre
Casting Notes
Mostly male cast
Includes adult, mature adult characters


In a strip of Detroit known as Paradise Valley, a man named Blue struggles to keep his father’s business, Paradise Club, afloat during a push towards gentrification. The city wants to kick African-Americans in the community of Black Bottom out by buying up properties up and down the strip. Blue, who is haunted by the memory of his father, teeters on the edge of madness as he decides whether selling the club is selling his soul. Along with the city, another man in Blue’s band, P-Sam, and a mysterious sexy stranger named Silver, begin to fight for ownership over the club, sending Blue and his woman Pumpkin into more confusion. Can Blue’s friend and confidante, Corn, keep Blue from falling into insanity, or will he be caught in Silver’s web? Can Pumpkin stand up for herself and tell Blue what she really feels, or will she concede to his demands? The people who occupy Paradise Club begin to turn on each other and change as the city of Detroit changes around them. Dominique Morisseau illuminates the effects of gentrification and the erasure of Black History on the African-American community with the first play in The Detroit Project, leaving us hungry for more. She continues her exploration with her next plays Detroit ‘67 and Skeleton Crew.

Lead Characters

Paradise Blue guide sections