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Martin McDonagh


Martin McDonagh is a British-Irish screenwriter, director, and one of the most acclaimed playwrights of our time whose body of work spans over two decades.  As a playwright he is celebrated for his absurdist black humor and incendiary spirit that challenges the modern theatre aesthetic. His sensational writing has won him numerous notable awards including three Laurence Olivier Awards, and one Drama Desk Award amongst several Tony nominations.  He has widely been described as the first dramatist since Shakespeare to have four works professionally produced on the London stage in a single season. Bursting onto the theatre scene in the early 90s McDonagh, in a very short period of time, established himself as one of the most provocative playwrights of our time. In 1996, McDonagh won both the Evening Standard Theatre Award for most promising playwright for his first work ever produced The Beauty Queen of Leenane and the Critics’ Circle Theatre Award for most promising playwright. Separated into two trilogies, McDonagh’s first six plays, all of which are fueled by their mockery of conventional depictions of Irish life, are located in and around County Galway, where he spent his holidays as a child. The first, The Leenane Trilogy, is set in a small village on the west coast of Ireland, and consists of The Beauty Queen of Leenane, A Skull in Connemara, and The Lonesome West . His second The Aran Islands Trilogy is set off the coast of County Galway, and consists of The Cripple of Inishmaan, The Lieutenant of Inishmore and The Banshees of Inisheer. His ability to seamlessly blend tragedy with comedy through meticulously-plotted scripts has propelled his career.  Building upon his successes from his Irish trilogies his first non-Irish play, The Pillowman, premiered on Broadway in 2005 earning multiple Tony and Drama Desk Award nominations.  A Behanding in Spokane is McDonagh’s first play set in the United States, premiering on Broadway in March 2010. . The Hangmen hit London’s West End to critical acclaim in 2015 and won the Laurence Olivier Award for Best New Play. His film Seven Psychopaths gained him much critical and commercial acclaim and his 2005 live action short Six Shooter earned him his first Academy Award.  He has been nominated for three other Academy Awards including Best Screenplay for his films In Bruges and Three Billboards Outside Ebbing, Missouri, this year’s Golden Globe winner for Best Film and Best Original Screenplay.