David Lindsay-Abaire

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David Lindsay-Abaire
Born David Abaire
(1969-11-14) November 14, 1969 (age 46)
Boston, Massachusetts, USA
Occupation Playwright, lyricist
Nationality American
Alma mater Sarah Lawrence College ('92)
Spouse Christine Lindsay-Abaire
Notable work(s) Fuddy Meers
Kimberly Akimbo
Good People (play)
Magnum opus Rabbit Hole
Awards Pulitzer Prize for Drama (2007)

David Lindsay-Abaire (born November 14, 1969) is an American playwright, lyricist and screenwriter. He received the Pulitzer Prize for Drama in 2007 for his play Rabbit Hole, which also earned several Tony Award nominations.

Early life and education[edit]

David Lindsay-Abaire was born David Abaire in Boston, Massachusetts. He concentrated in theatre at Sarah Lawrence College, where he graduated in 1992.[1] He was accepted into the Lila Acheson Wallace American Playwrights Program at the Juilliard School,[2] where he wrote under the tutelage of playwrights Marsha Norman and Christopher Durang from 1996 to 1998.[3]


Lindsay-Abaire has received commissions from Dance Theater Workshop and the Jerome Foundation.[citation needed] His play Rabbit Hole was first commissioned by South Coast Repertory, Costa Mesa, California.[4]

He has received awards from the Berilla Kerr Foundation, the Lincoln Center LeComte du Nuoy Fund, Mixed Blood Theater, Primary Stages, the Eugene O'Neill Theatre Center, the Tennessee Williams/ New Orleans Literary Festival, and the South Carolina Playwrights Festival.[citation needed]

Among his influences, Lindsay-Abaire said: "I love Chris’s [Durang] work. And I don’t think there’s been a piece written about me that hasn’t mentioned the fact that he and I live in the same world. But I think I’ve also been influenced by John Guare and Tina Howe and older folks like Feydeau and Ionesco and Joe Orton."[5]

Lindsay-Abaire had his first theatrical success with Fuddy Meers, which was workshopped as part of the National Playwrights Conference at the Eugene O'Neill Theatre Center in 1998 under Artistic Director Lloyd Richards.[6][7] The play premiered Off-Broadway at the Manhattan Theatre Club, running from November 2, 1999 to January 2000[8] and transferred to the Minetta Lane Theatre on January 27, 2000, closing in April 2000 after 16 previews and 78 performances there.[9][10] He returned to the Manhattan Theatre Club in 2001 with Wonder of the World, starring Sarah Jessica Parker, about a wife who suddenly leaves her husband and hops a bus to Niagara Falls in search of freedom, enlightenment, and the meaning of life.[11][12]

Lindsay-Abaire also wrote Kimberly Akimbo (2000),[13] Dotting and Dashing (1999), Snow Angel (1999), [14] and A Devil Inside (Off-Broadway, 1997).[15] Among his early short plays, he wrote The Li'l Plays (1997-1999) which are five comedic plays, each 10-15 minutes in length.[16]

His play Rabbit Hole premiered in 2006 on Broadway with Cynthia Nixon, Tyne Daly, and John Slattery,[17] and won the 2007 Pulitzer Prize for Drama.[18] It was nominated for a Tony Award for Best Play, as well as other Tony awards, and Cynthia Nixon won the 2006 Tony Award as Best Actress.[19]

He wrote the book for the musical High Fidelity, which ran on Broadway in December 2006.[20][21]

He wrote the book and lyrics for the musical Shrek the Musical which ran on Broadway from November 8, 2008 (previews) to January 3, 2010, with Lindsay-Abaire receiving a 2009 Tony Award nomination for Book of a Musical[22] and in the West End in May 2011.[23] The musical ran for 441 performances on Broadway.[24]

Good People officially opened on Broadway on March 3, 2011, with Frances McDormand and Tate Donovan in the lead roles.[25] The play was nominated for the 2011 Tony Award, Best Play and won the 2011 Tony Award, Actress in a Play for McDormand.[26]

His play Ripcord opened Off-Broadway on October 20, 2015 at the Manhattan Theatre Club in a limited engagement. Directed by David Hyde Pierce, the cast features Marylouise Burke, Rachel Dratch and Holland Taylor. The play focuses on two roommates in a retirement home, who according to Variety "devise dirty tricks...to torment one another."[27]


Lindsay-Abaire has written six screenplays: Robots (2005),[28] Inkheart (2008),[29] and Poltergeist (2015).[30] He wrote the screenplay of the 2010 film adaptation of his play Rabbit Hole, in which Nicole Kidman starred. She produced the film, which debuted at the Toronto International Film Festival, and was well received. [31] He wrote the screenplay for DreamWorks Animation, titled Rise of the Guardians (2012), [32] based on a story by co-director William Joyce. He co-wrote the screenplay for Oz the Great and Powerful (2013). [33]

Personal life[edit]

Lindsay-Abaire and his wife Christine have two children together. They live in Brooklyn, New York.[3]

Theatre works (selected)[edit]


  1. ^ "Alumni News and Announcements". Sarah Lawrence College. 2007–2008. 
  2. ^ "Alumni News". The Juilliard School. September 2011. Archived from the original on 2011-11-11. David Lindsay-Abaire (Playwrights ’97) 
  3. ^ a b Marks, Peter (March 12, 2000). "Finding the Humor and the Hope in Fractured Lives". The New York Times. Retrieved December 25, 2008. 
  4. ^ " 'Rabbit Hole' History" circleplayers.net, accessed September 1, 2015
  5. ^ Wren, Celia. "'Fuddy Meers'. Lost in the Funhouse. An Interview with the playwright" Originally published in American Theatre magazine (July/August 2000), accessed September 1, 2015
  6. ^ David Lindsay-Abaire, Fuddy Meers, Dramatists Play Service Inc,, 2000, ISBN 0822217511, p. 2
  7. ^ Lefkowitz, David. "O'Neill Center Playwrights Conference in Full Swing Through Aug. 1" Playbill, July 17, 1998
  8. ^ Jones, Kenneth. "Lindsay-Abaire's New Comedy, 'Fuddy Meers', Opens Nov. 2 at MTC" Playbill, November 2, 1999
  9. ^ Jones, Kenneth. "Off-Broadway's 'Fuddy Meers' Folds, April 16" Playbill, April 16, 2000
  10. ^ "'Fuddy Meers' Listing" lortel.org, accessed September 1, 2015
  11. ^ "Wonder of the World Listing" lortel.org, accessed September 1, 2015
  12. ^ Jones, Kenneth and Simonson, Robert. "Sarah Jessica Parker Beholds 'Wonder of the World', Opening in NYC Nov. 1" Playbill, November 1, 2001
  13. ^ Shirley, Don (April 16, 2001). "How a Teen Copes in a World Thrown 'Akimbo'". The Los Angeles Times. 
  14. ^ Lindsay-Abaire, David (2003). Snow Angel. Playscripts, Inc. 
  15. ^ Bruckner, D. J. R. "Theater in Review" The New York Times, January 23, 1997
  16. ^ Bryer, Jackson R. and Hartig, Mary C. "Lindsay-Abaire, David (1969-)", The Facts on File Companion to American Drama, Infobase Publishing, 2010, ISBN 1438129661, p. 313
  17. ^ " 'Rabbit Hole' Listing" ibdb, accessed September 1, 2015
  18. ^ "Pulitzer Prize Winner, Drama, 2007" pulitzer.org, accessed September 1, 2015
  19. ^ "Just the Facts: List of 2006 Tony Award Winners and Nominees" Playbill. June 11, 2006
  20. ^ High Fidelity at the Internet Broadway Database
  21. ^ '"high Fidelity' Broadway Production" playbillvault.com, accessed October 20, 2015
  22. ^ '"Shrek the Musical" Broadway Production" playbillvault.com, accessed October 20, 2015
  23. ^ Shenton, Mark. "'Shrek the Musical' Begins Performances at West End's Theatre Royal, Drury Lane May 6", Playbill, May 6, 2011
  24. ^ Healy, Patrick (2009-10-21). "Shrek the Musical to Close January 3". The New York Times. 
  25. ^ Jones, Kenenth (November 9, 2010). "Becky Ann Baker, Estelle Parsons, Renée Goldsberry Join World-Premiere Cast of Broadway's Good People". Playbill.com. 
  26. ^ '"Good PeopleLisa. " Broadway Production" playbillvault.com, accessed October 20, 2015
  27. ^ "Review Roundup: David Lindsay-Abaire's RIPCORD Opens Off-Broadway" broadwayworld.com, October 20, 2015
  28. ^ Robots at AllMovie
  29. ^ Inkheart at AllMovie
  30. ^ Poltergeist imdb
  31. ^ Kilday, Greg. "Lionsgate takes trip down 'Rabbit Hole'" The Hollywood Reporter, September 16, 2010
  32. ^ Rise of the Guardians at Rotten Tomatoes
  33. ^ Kennedy, Lisa. "Movie review: 'Oz the Great and Powerful' more amusing than great" Denver Post, March 8, 2013

External links[edit]