2013 HONORED PLAYWRIGHT

Constance Congdon


Constance Congdon has been called "one of the best playwrights our country and our language has ever produced" by playwright Tony Kushner in Kushner's introduction to her collection Tales of the Lost Formicans and Other Plays. In addition to Tales of the Lost Formicans, which has had more than 200 productions, world-wide. Congdon's plays include: Casanova, Dog Opera, both produced at the Public Theatre, No Mercy (Humana Festival),Losing Father’s Body (Portland Stage (Maine), Lips, (Primary Stages), Native American, (Portland Stage (Maine), (Lyric Hammersmith Studio).


Her latest play, Paradise Street, was most recently workshopped at the JAW Festival at Portland Stage in Oregon. Three commissions from the American Conservatory Theater: A Mother, starring Olympia Dukakis, a new verse version of The Misanthrope, and a new adaptation of The Imaginary Invalid, were all produced by ACT and have gone on to other productions. Also at ACT: Moontel Six, a commission by the A.C.T. Young Conservatory and subsequently performed at London's National Theatre, followed by another production of the two-act version at San Francisco’s Zeum and directed by Young Conservatory Director, Craig Slaight.The Automata Pietà, another YC commission, received its world premiere at San Francisco's Magic Theatre in 2002; Nightingales went to the Theatre Royale Bath’s Youth Theatre. Congdon’s No Mercy, and its companion piece, One Day Earlier; were part of the 2000 season devoted to Congdon at the Profile Theatre.


She has also written a number of opera libretti and seven plays for the Children's Theatre Company of Minneapolis. The Children of the Elvi, Congdon's epic and NOT suitable for children, finally received its premiere at the Key City Public Theater in 2007. Congdon’s plays have been produced throughout the world, including Cairo and Berlin. Her plays are published, mainly, by Broadway Plays Publishing. Samuel French published Dog Opera. A collection of four of her plays has been published by TCG, Inc. Her new verse version of Tartuffe will be included in the next Norton Anthology of Drama, and is out in a single-volume Norton Critical edition. She’s been writing a long time and can thank the NEA, the Rockefeller Foundation, the W. Alton Jones Foundation, the Guggenheim Foundation, the Arnold Weisberger Award, the Berilla Kerr Award, and, most recently, The Helen Merrill Award for making this more possible. She’s an alum of New Dramatists, member of The Dramatists Guild and of PEN. Congdon has taught playwriting at the Yale School of Drama, but her home is as playwright-in-residence at Amherst College where she’s been teaching for a couple of decades.