“Good writers define reality; bad ones merely restate it. A good writer turns fact into truth; a bad writer will, more often than not, accomplish the opposite.” – Edward Albee
Born on this date in 1928, Albee wrote plays often considered frank examinations of the modern condition. Among his best known are The Zoo Story, The Sandbox, Who's Afraid of Virginia Woolf? and A Delicate Balance, the latter being the first of three of his plays to win the Pulitzer Prize for Drama (the other two being Three Tall Women, and Seascape.
Virginia Woolf and The Goat, or Who is Sylvia? won Broadway’s Tony Awards for Best Play – and Albee himself was awarded a Lifetime Achievement Tony, the first of many lifetime achievement awards. Between 1995 and his death last September he also was awarded the Gold Medal in Drama, feted at the Kennedy Center Honors, and given the National Medal in the Arts.
A native New Yorker who was often at odds with critics, he once said, “The difference between critics and audiences is that one is a group of humans and one is not.” He also famously noted that he thought it would be a good idea to have friends in both Heaven and Hell.
His advice to blossoming playwrights was to remember that, “A play is fiction – and fiction is fact distilled into truth.”
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