Opening night for Square Suite on Broadway is March 28, and although the play stars husband-and-wife duo Matthew Broderick and Sarah Jessica Parker, set designer John Lee Beatty jokes that he really got top marks in the production, which is directed by John Benjamin Hickey. “That’s the title of the play. I was laughing about it with Sarah Jessica and Matthew the other day and I was like, ‘You know, I’ve got the title role here,'” Hickey says. AD.
He really isn’t wrong. The lavishly appointed titular suite (number 719 to be exact) is the only backdrop to the three-act play-turned-film-turned-play. Premiering in 1968, the comedy written by the late Neil Simon involves three different sets of characters, all played by the Ferris Bueller’s day off the actor and the sex and the city star and all staying in Suite 719 at Manhattan’s famed Plaza Hotel: a troubled couple celebrating their anniversary, a Hollywood producer reuniting with their old high school sweetheart, and parents trying to get their daughter out of the bathroom on her wedding day . It’s the first time the showbiz couple, who have been married for more than two decades and share three children together, have appeared together since the 1995 play. How to succeed in business without really trying.
For the interiors, Beatty was influenced by the classic Alfred Hitchcock film, from north to northwest, where Cary Grant’s character stays in a suite at the Plaza while searching for the man who stole his identity. “I started with the film because it had a certain glamor and a beautiful color scheme that really inspired me,” Beatty said. AD. (The 1959 film also marked the Plaza’s debut on the big screen.) A royal champagne color with yellow tones appears on the walls covered in gold damask, the bedspread and the tufted upholstery in Beatty’s stage version – it says it’s a nod to the play being “a champagne experience”. The two-time Tony Award-winning designer also appealed to his own memory, recalling a time when he won a raffle ticket to stay at a hotel and noticed the height of the room’s architecture.