Alan Ayckbourn: Short Biography

This is the officially approved short biography for Alan Ayckbourn which is used in programmes and other publications. It is available to reproduce for free providing this website is credited.

Alan Ayckbourn
Writer / Director

2018 will mark Alan Ayckbourn's 59th year as a playwright with it being 61 years since he joined the Library Theatre company in Scarborough, of which he was the Artistic Director for 37 years and where he made both his professional playwriting in 1959 and his directorial debut in 1961. He has spent his life in theatre, rarely if ever tempted by television or film, which perhaps explains why he continues to be so prolific. To date he has written 82 plays - the 82nd will premiere this summer at the Stephen Joseph Theatre - and his work has been translated into over 35 languages, is performed on stage and television throughout the world and has won countless awards.

Major successes include:
Relatively Speaking, How the Other Half Loves, Absurd Person Singular, Bedroom Farce, A Chorus of Disapproval and The Norman Conquests. In recent years, there have been revivals of Season's Greetings and A Small Family Business at the National Theatre and in the West End productions of Absent Friends, Relatively Speaking and How The Other Half Loves.

In 2009, he retired as artistic director of the Stephen Joseph, where almost all his plays have been and continue to be first staged. He has also forged close links with the 59E59 Theaters in New York, where he has directed a number of his own plays to great success since 2009. 2018 will see him direct the New York premiere of his 81st play
A Brief History Of Women for the Brits Off Broadway festival.

In recent years, he has been inducted into American Theatre’s Hall of Fame, received the 2010 Critics’ Circle Award for Services to the Arts and became the first British playwright to receive both Olivier and Tony Special Lifetime Achievement Awards. He was knighted in 1997 for 'services to theatre.'

Source: Alan Ayckbourn's official website

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