Irish playwright Friel passed away at age 86. He wrote 24 published plays, including the Broadway productions Philadelphia, Here I Come; The Loves of Cass McGuire; Lovers; The Mundy Scheme; The Freedom of the City; Faith Healer; Translations; Dancing at Lughnasa; and Wonderful Tennessee. In addition to plays, he wrote short stories, screenplays and adaptations.
"Known as a gifted storyteller whose work achieved international acclaim for over four decades, Brian Friel’s writing explored social and political life in Ireland through lyrical dramas which played notably on the Broadway stage," said Charlotte St. Martin, President of the Broadway League, in a press statement. "Our thoughts are with his family, friends, and many fans."
Irish Rep, a company that has staged several of his plays Off-Broadway, also honored the Tony-winning playwright with a memorial celebration featuring remembrances and readings Dec. 7. at Manhattan Theatre Club’s Samuel J. Friedman Theatre.
Meadow, who is the artistic director of MTC, commented in an earlier press statement: "Brian Friel, one of the great playwrights of the modern age, brought 20th century Ireland onto world stages, finding in Irish culture aspirations and experiences common to all mankind. I knew when I first read Translations in 1981 that it was the work of a genius...Brian was one of the great humanists and artists of our time who will be greatly missed by all who had the pleasure of knowing him."