Playwrights Gather for a Conversation
on Censorship

NCAC Presents an Exclusive Event on June 23 with
Edward Albee, David Henry Hwang, Terrence McNally
and Adam Rapp, with David Cote Moderating


June 23, 2010

CONTACT: Teresa Koberstein, [email protected] (212) 807-6222 ext. 19
                 Larry Horne at [email protected]  or (212) 807-6222 ext. 17



NEW YORK – On Wednesday, June 23 the National Coalition Against Censorship is hosting an unprecedented conversation between four of America’s leading playwrights — Edward Albee, David Henry Hwang, Terrence McNally and Adam Rapp — all of whom have experienced censorship of their work. Time Out New York‘s Theater Editor David Cote will moderate.
"In addition to sharing their own personal experiences with censorship," says NCAC’s Executive Director, Joan Bertin, "they can offer insights into the political and ideological pressures on contemporary arts and culture that influence what gets said and who says it."
The event, Playwrights on Censorship, will take place from 6:30 – 8:30 p.m. at the home of renowned editor Jane Friedman, CEO of Open Road Integrated Media and chair of NCAC’s Free Speech Leadership Council. The evening will be intimate and informal. Space is limited.

Playwrights on Censorship is a follow-up to last year’s event, A Conversation with Toni Morrison. This successful event inaugurated NCAC’s Free Speech Leadership Council, a select national group of arts, cultural, intellectual, legal and business leaders committed to the defense of free expression.

The evening will also highlight an important and ongoing aspect of NCAC’s work. For years, NCAC has defended the works of many playwrights, including Tony Kushner, Christopher Durang, Craig Lucas, Terrence McNally, and David Henry Hwang, as well as the work of student playwrights and directors whose schools have attempted to control student speech. Adam Rapp’s current play, The Metal Children, which ran at the Vineyard Theater in Manhattan, is inspired by the removal of one of his books, The Buffalo Tree, from a high school’s curriculum in Pennsylvania.

This is an exclusive event. For more information, please visit:

About the Playwrights & Moderator:
EDWARD ALBEE has been an ardent critic of censorship and self-censorship in literature. Many of his plays, including The Zoo Story and Who’s Afraid of Virginia Woolf have been censored. He is a recipient of the Gold Medal in Drama from the American Academy and Institute of Arts and Letters, the Kennedy Center Honors, and the National Medal of Arts for his contributions to the theater. His plays include A Delicate Balance (Pulitzer Prize, Tony Award), Seascape (Pulitzer Prize), Three Tall Women (Pulitzer Prize), The Goat or Who Is Sylvia? (Tony Award), and many others.

DAVID HENRY HWANG is a playwright, screenwriter, and librettist best known as the author of M. Butterfly.  Despite its popularity on Broadway, the Tony Award winning play has met with censorship in  the United States and China. His other plays include FOB, Family Devotions; The Sound of Voice, Golden Child, and Yellow Face (Pulitzer Prize Finalist.) His Broadway musicals include his book for Flower Drum Song, Disney’s AIDA (music and lyrics by Elton John and Tim Rice) and Tarzan (music by Phil Collins).

TERRENCE McNALLY has won Tony Awards for his plays Master Class and Love! Valour! Compassion! His play Corpus Christiwas condemned by the Catholic League; its performance canceled this year at Tarleton State University near Fort Worth, Texas.  His other plays include The Lisbon Traviata; Frankie and Johnny in the Clair de Lune; Dedication or The Stuff of Dreams; The Stendhal Syndrome, and most recently, Golden Age at the Kennedy Center.

ADAM RAPP is an Obie-award-winning playwright, director, and author of numerous plays including Nocturne, Blackbird, and Red Light Winter (Pulitzer Prize finalist). He is also the author of graphic novels and young adult fiction, including The Buffalo Tree.

DAVID COTE is theater editor and chief drama critic for Time Out New York. He is also an early-career playwright and librettist. In 2008, he was commissioned by the Gingold Theatrical Group to write a full-length play as part of its Press Cuttings program. He has written opera libretti for composers Stefan Weisman and Robert Paterson. David teaches arts criticism at Brooklyn College. Fellowships: The MacDowell Colony.

About the National Coalition Against Censorship:
The National Coalition Against Censorship (NCAC), founded in 1974, is an alliance of 50 national non-profit organizations, including literary, artistic, religious, educational, professional, labor, and civil liberties groups. United by a conviction that freedom of thought, inquiry, and expression must be defended, we work to educate our own members and the public at large about the dangers of censorship and how to oppose them.

National Coalition Against Censorship
275 7th Ave, #1504
New York, NY 10001