b. 3rd November, 1939
American playwright who has received four Tony Awards, an Emmy, and numerous others awards.
What the gay movement is really about is being yourself. You must be yourself, else you risk becoming invisible.
This success though was the culmination of a long career going back to 1964, when his first play, “Things that go bump in the night” met with a decidedly frosty critical reception, and played only 12 nights. The intervening years were filled with hard graft, a steady stream of output, an ability to learn and improve his craft, and growing critical recognition.
McNally has spoken of the importance of honesty and coming out early in his personal life, and has never shirked from putting gay characters and gay life characters on stage, even long before it became commonly accepted to do so. (The Ritz was set in a gay bathhouse). Two major themes are the difficulties people find in making human connections between each other (and the importance of the search for those connections), and
the power of art (especially opera, and by implication, the theatre) to help us to make these connections, by breaking down the walls that divide us.
In spite of the big themes he addresses in his plays, McNally insists that he does not set out to write plays about issues: his primary concern is to write characters – because that is what audiences pay to come and see.
In addition to his major work in the theatre, McNally has also written the books for musicals and screenplays, and in opera
Sweet Eros (1968)
Where Has Tommy Flowers Gone? (1971)
Bad Habits (1974)
The Ritz (1975)
Frankie and Johnny in the Clair de Lune (1982)
Andre’s Mother (1988)
The Lisbon Traviata (1989)
Lips Together, Teeth Apart (1991)
Love! Valour! Compassion! (1994)
By The Sea, By The Sea, By The Beautiful Sea (1995)
Master Class (1995)
Corpus Christi (1998)
Some Men (2006)
The Golden Age (2010)