A.R. Gurney Biography

A.R. Gurney
A.R. Gurney

Albert Ramsdell Gurney, less formally known as "Pete," is one of the most prolific and produced playwrights in America. His work focuses primarily on the issues and realities of middle-class American life and has been produced on international theatre stages for more than 30 years.

After receiving a bachelor of arts degree in 1952, Gurney joined the United States Navy during the Korean War, writing shows to entertain the military personnel. Following his discharge in 1955, he enrolled in the Yale School of Drama where he received his master's degree in playwriting. Later he joined the faculty at Massachusetts Institute of Technology in Cambridge where he taught until 1987.

In 1958, Gurney wrote Love in Buffalo the first musical ever produced at Yale. His breakthrough success came in 1982 with The Dining Room. Other award- winning plays include The Perfect Party, Another Antigone, The Cocktail Hour, Love Letters and A Cheever Evening. His two most recent plays premiered earlier this year - Sylvia, at the Manhattan Theatre Club and Overtime at The Old Globe Theatre in San Diego.

Gurney is the recipient of many awards, notably a Drama Desk Award in 1971, a Rockefeller Award in 1977 and two Lucille Lortel Awards in 1989 and 1994. He is on the Artistic Board of Playwrights Horizons and is currently on leave from M.I.T.

Later Life premiered off-Broadway for a limited run at Playwrights Horizon on May 23, 1993. It tells the story of love and second chances, and according to Gurney, has been a high point in his career.

(Later Life program notes from Canadian Stage Company. Author of notes not credited.)

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Recent Performances of works by A.R. Gurney
Production/Credit WhereOpening Night
Love Letters Nutley Little Theatre 12/13/2019
Sylvia Circle Players 5/17/2019
The Cocktail Hour South Street Players 5/3/2013
The Cocktail Hour Chester Theatre Group 11/4/2011
Sylvia Center Players (Freehold) 7/22/2011
The Fourth Wall 4th Wall Theatre 9/24/2010
Love Letters Teaneck New Theatre 2/6/2009
Love Letters Bergen County Players 5/18/2008
Sylvia Somerset Valley Players 7/20/2007
The Cocktail Hour Circle Players 4/21/2006
The Fourth Wall Bergen County Players 5/7/2005
Sylvia First Avenue Playhouse 5/6/2005
Scenes From American Life Princeton Summer Theater 7/10/2004
The Dining Room Florham Park Players 2/20/2004
Love Letters Stage East Ensemble 2/13/2004
The Dining Room Painted River Theater Company 5/14/2003
Wayside Motor Inn Old Library Theatre 3/1/2003
Ancestral Voices Players Guild of Leonia 1/24/2003
Sylvia Iron Mountain Stage Company 4/20/2002
Sylvia East Brunswick Community Players 4/12/2002
Sylvia Jersey Central Theatre Company 4/5/2002
Love Letters Florham Park Players 2/15/2002
Sylvia Bickford Theater 2/14/2002
Labor Day Summit Playhouse Association 11/2/2001
Love Letters Brook Arts Center 6/15/2001
The Dining Room Theater Project 5/3/2001
Sylvia Players Guild of Leonia 2/23/2001
Love Letters Sketch Club Players 2/9/2001
Human Events George Street Playhouse 1/6/2001
Sylvia Radburn Players 11/10/2000
What I Did Last Summer Theater Project 11/9/2000
Sylvia Tri-State Actors Theater 7/20/2000
Love Letters Old Library Theatre 5/6/2000
Ancestral Voices George Street Playhouse 4/29/2000
The Golden Fleece Theater Project 3/23/2000
Sylvia Circle Players 3/17/2000
Love Letters Hudson Shakespeare Company 1/28/2000
Labor Day SummerFun 7/13/1999
The Dining Room What Exit? Theatre Company 4/8/1999
Darlene and The Guest Lecturer George Street Playhouse 10/24/1998
Love Letters Bergen County Players 9/27/1998
Sylvia Bergen County Players 1/2/1998
Sylvia Chatham Players 10/1/1997
The Dining Room Two River Theatre Company 9/1/1997
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