Ann-Marie MacDonald

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Ann-Marie MacDonald

Anne Marie MacDonald at the Eden Mills Writers Festival in 2015
MacDonald at the Eden Mills Writers' Festival in 2015
Born (1958-10-29) October 29, 1958 (age 64)
CFB Baden-Soellingen, West Germany
OccupationPlaywright, novelist, actress, broadcast host
Notable worksGoodnight Desdemona
Fall on Your Knees
The Way the Crow Flies
Adult Onset
SpouseAlisa Palmer

Ann-Marie MacDonald OC (born October 29, 1958) is a Canadian playwright, author, actress, and broadcast host who lives in Montreal, Quebec, Canada. MacDonald is the daughter of a member of Canada's military; she was born at an air force base near Baden-Baden, West Germany. She is of partial Lebanese descent through her mother.[1]

Life and career[edit]

MacDonald won the Commonwealth Writers Prize for her first novel, Fall on Your Knees (1996),[2] which was selected for Oprah Winfrey's Book Club in January 2002.[3] MacDonald received the Governor General's Award for Drama,[4] the Floyd S. Chalmers Canadian Play Award,[5] and the Canadian Authors Association Drama Award[6] for her play, Goodnight Desdemona (Good Morning Juliet). MacDonald hosted the CBC documentary series Life and Times for seven seasons. MacDonald also hosted CBC's flagship documentary program, Doc Zone for eight seasons. She appeared in the films I've Heard the Mermaids Singing and Better Than Chocolate, among others.

MacDonald's 2003 novel, The Way the Crow Flies, was partly inspired by the Steven Truscott case. Her third novel Adult Onset was released in 2014 and has been translated into five languages. Her fourth novel Fayne was published in 2022.[7]

She was the inaugural Mordecai Richler Reading Room Writer in Residence at Concordia University,[8] and she coaches students in the Acting and Playwriting Programs at the National Theatre School of Canada.

In 2008, MacDonald was awarded an honorary doctorate of humanities by the University of Windsor.[9]

In May 2015, MacDonald was the "big-name author" and "public face"[10] of the inaugural Canadian Authors for Indies Day, organized to bring attention to independent bookstores across the country. Nearly 100 stores and 270 authors participated in the nationwide event.[10]

In December 2018, MacDonald was named as an Officer of the Order of Canada, in recognition of "her multi-faceted contributions to the arts in Canada and for her advocacy of LGBTQ+ and women's rights".[11]

MacDonald is married to the Canadian playwright and theatre director Alisa Palmer.[12][13]






Television (as actress or host)[edit]

Television (as writer)[edit]

See also[edit]


  1. ^ Helen Chryssides, "Prose, plays and the joy of creating", The Canberra Times, April 9, 2000, p. 20
  2. ^ "Fall On Your Knees wins Commonwealth first-book prize". The Hamilton Spectator. Hamilton, Ontario. May 3, 1997. p. W2.
  3. ^ "Fall on Your Knees, by Ann-Marie MacDonald". January 24, 2002. Retrieved May 8, 2020.
  4. ^ Penfield III, Wilder (January 28, 1991). "The Winning Ann-Marie: From Gemini to Governor General's Award". Toronto Sun. Toronto, Ontario, Canada. p. 78.
  5. ^ Crew, Robert (November 4, 1989). "All in a Goodnight's work for busy playwright/actor". Toronto Star. Toronto, Ontario, Canada. p. J3.
  6. ^ Schiefer, Nancy (August 10, 1996). "Novel-Playwright's First Book Has Tremendous Appeal". The London Free Press. London, Ontario, Canada. p. D6.
  7. ^ Grubisic, Brett Josef (October 13, 2022). "Ann-Marie MacDonald's new book 'Fayne' a triple-decker Victorian spoof". Toronto Star. Retrieved December 1, 2022.
  8. ^ McGillis, Ian (September 25, 2015). "Concordia names first Richler resident writer; MacDonald eager to offer support for an often 'very lonely' art". Montreal Gazette (Early ed.). Montreal, Quebec. p. B7.
  9. ^ "Honorary degree recipient's novel selected as Book of the Week". The Lance. University of Windsor. March 30, 2015. p. 1.
  10. ^ a b Godfrey, Laura (February 24, 2015). "First-Ever Canadian Authors for Indies Day Set for May". Publishers Weekly. Retrieved May 25, 2020.
  11. ^ "Governor General Announces 103 New Appointments to the Order of Canada". Canada Newswire. December 27, 2018. Retrieved October 11, 2019.
  12. ^ Cole, Susan G. (September 25 – October 1, 2003). "Ann-Marie MacDonald". Now Toronto. Archived from the original on September 29, 2007. Retrieved September 7, 2007.
  13. ^ "Author Spotlight: Ann-Marie MacDonald". Archived from the original on January 12, 2012. Retrieved October 28, 2019.

External links[edit]