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Lanford Wilson

Playwright

Lanford Wilson (1937 – 2011) authored Balm in Gilead, The Rimers of Eldritch, The Gingham Dog, Lemon Sky, Serenading Louie, The Hot L Baltimore, The Mound Builders, Angels Fall, Burn This, Redwood Curtain, Trinity, Fifth of July, Talley & Son, Talley’s Folly, Book of Days, Rain Dance, Sympathetic Magic, and some 20 one-act plays including Brontosaurus, The Great Nebula in Orion, and the paired The Moonshot Tape and A Poster of the Cosmos. For television, he wrote for “Taxi!!” (no relation to the series) and “The Migrants,” from a story by Tennessee Williams. He also wrote the libretto for Lee Hoiby’s opera of Williams’ Summer and Smoke, and a new translation of Chekhov’s Three Sisters. Wilson co-founded (with Tanya Berezin, Rob Thirkield and Marshall W. Mason) the Circle Repertory Company in New York City and was a resident playwright there from 1969-1995. Awards include the Brandeis University Creative Arts Award in Theatre Arts, The Institute of Arts and Letters Award, The Edward Albee Last Frontier Award, The John Steinbeck Award, The Drama-Logue Award (Los Angeles) for Talley’s Folly and Fifth of July, two New York Drama Critics’ Circle Awards for Best Play (Talley’s Folly and The Hot L Baltimore), two Obie Awards for Best Play (The Hot L Baltimore and The Mound Builders), an Obie Award for Sustained Achievement, and the Pulitzer Prize for Drama (Talley’s Folly). He was a member of the Dramatists Guild Council. The theater community as a whole deeply felt his loss in March 2011 when he passed away at the age of 73.
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