Marcus Gardley is a poet-playwright and rising star in American theatre, having been awarded a playwriting residency at Victory Gardens Theatre in Chicago by the Mellon Foundation, chosen as one of 50 writers to watch by Dramatists Magazine, and awarded the 2011 PEN/Laura Pels award for Mid-Career Playwright. His work was brought to local attention early in his career when he workshopped his play Sweet Dream Grandpa in Horizon’s 2003 New South Play Festival and was named a 2005 finalist in the Kendeda Graduate Playwriting Competition at the Alliance Theatre. The New Yorker describes Gardley as “the heir to Garcia Lorca, Pirandello and Tennessee Williams.”
every tongue confess premiered at the Arena Stage in Washington, D.C. in 2010. His other recent plays are On The Levee, a musical which premiered at LCT3/Lincoln Center Theater and was nominated for 11 Audelco Awards including outstanding playwright, and And Jesus Moonwalks the Mississippi, which was produced at The Cutting Ball Theater and received the SF Bay Area Theatre Critics Circle Award nomination for outstanding new play, and The Road Weeps, The Well Runs Dry, currently being produced by a consortium of theatres across the country. Other notable productions are dance of the holy ghost at Yale Repertory Theatre (now under a Broadway option), (L)imitations of Life at the Empty Space in Seattle, and like sun fallin’ in the mouth at the National Black Theatre Festival. He is the recipient of a Helen Merrill Award, a Kesselring Honor, the Gerbode Emerging Playwright Award, the National Alliance for Musical Theatre Award, the Eugene O’Neill Memorial Scholarship, and the ASCAP Cole Porter Award.
Gardley holds an MFA in Playwriting from the Yale Drama School and is a member of New Dramatists, The Dramatists Guild, and The Lark Play Development Center. He is a Visiting Lecturer in Playwriting at Brown University and is currently working on multiple projects, including three new musicals.