“Forgotten Hollwood”- The Bard of American Theater…

Posted on March 25, 2020 by raideoman1 | No Comments

Manny P. here…

“`Terrence McNally was one of our nation’s great playwrights. His prolific career included winning Tony Awards for Love! Valour! Compassion! and Master Class, and for musicals,  Ragtime and Kiss of the Spider Woman.  His journey spanned sixty years, and his plays, musicals, and operas were routinely staged all over the world.  Terrence explored how people connect. With wit, he tackled the strains within families, war and relationships. He was an openly gay scribe who dealt with homophobia, love, and AIDS. One of his previous interests… novelist Edward Albee.

“`McNally grew up in Corpus Christi listening to radio broadcasts of The Green Hornet and the Metropolitan Opera. While in high school, Terrence was encouraged to write by his gifted English teacher, Maurine McElroy. He would dedicate several of his plays to her. While at the Actors Studio, he was hired by novelist John Steinbeck.  McNally’s earliest theater attempt was writing the musical adaptation of Steinbeck’s East of Eden.

“`Simultaneously busy in regional and off-Broadway theater, as well as, on Broadway, McNally was one of the few playwrights of his generation to successfully pass from the avant-garde to mainstream acclaim. The Ritz was his breakout work. He eventually collaborated three times with legendary composers, John Kander and lyricist Fred Ebb.

“`Some of his Broadway musical adaptations: The Full Monty, adapted from the British film; Catch Me if You Can, based on Steven Spielberg’s motion picture; and a lyrical reworking of Anastasia.

“`In addition to his award-winning plays and musicals, McNally also wrote two operas, multiple screenplays, teleplays, and a memoir.  In 2019, he received a number of Lifetime Achievement awards. The accolade he cherished most:  Queerty named him one of their Pride50 dedicated to:

Trailblazing individuals who actively ensure society remains moving towards equality, acceptance, and dignity for all queer people

 This honor marked the fiftieth anniversary of the Stonewall Riots, considered the watershed moment in the modern LGBTQ Civil Rights movement.

“`A tragic victim from complications of Covid-19, Terrence McNally (above) was eighty-one.

Until next time>                               “never forget”

This entry was posted on Wednesday, March 25th, 2020 at 12:02 am and is filed under Blog by Manny Pacheco. You can follow any comments to this post through the RSS 2.0 feed. You can leave a response, or trackback from your own site.

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