Entertainment & Arts

US playwright Lanford Wilson dies aged 73

Lanford Wilson in 1980
Image caption Wilson was a prominent member of the Off-Broadway theatre scene

Pulitzer prize-winning playwright Lanford Wilson, best known for such plays as Talley's Folly and Burn This, has died aged 73.

The writer passed away at a New Jersey hospital on Wednesday after a long illness, his agent said.

Wilson wrote 17 full-length plays and more than 30 one-acts.

He was awarded the Pulitzer in 1980 for Talley's Folly, part of a trilogy of plays about several generations of a Missouri family.

He died on the eve of a new staging of his 1973 work The Hot L Baltimore at Chicago's Steppenwolf theatre.

Tina Landau, the play's director, said Wilson's "tremendous spirit is with us in the theatre" and that Thursday's performance would be in his honour.

The writer was a prominent member of the Off-Broadway theatre scene and was one of four founders of The Circle Repertory Company in New York.

Marshall W Mason. a friend and collaborator, posted a notice on Facebook saying Wilson's death was "a peaceful, painless end".

"Words cannot express the loss we all will feel," he added. "But we must be grateful for the bountiful beauty he bestowed upon us."

Lanford's Burn This was staged in London in 1990 with John Malkovich and Juliet Stevenson.

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