Alan Ayckbourn: Playwright

Alan Ayckbourn is most recognised as a playwright. His plays are performed throughout the world and he is recognised as one of the world's most performed living playwrights. His plays have been translated into more than 30 different languages.

You can find out more about Alan Ayckbourn's plays in detail in the
plays section of the website as well as a definitive list of all his writings here.

Here we present a few facts about the playwright with regard to his playwriting career.
  • Alan Ayckbourn has written - as of 2017 - 82 full length plays; his 81st - A Brief History of Women - will premiere in summer 2017 and his 82nd - Better Off Dead - will open in 2018 at the Stephen Joseph Theatre.
  • He has also written more than 25 other assorted revues, one act plays, adaptations, books and plays for children.
  • Alan Ayckbourn began his professional play-writing career in 1959 at the Library Theatre, Scarborough, with his first full-length play The Square Cat.
  • Since 1959, all but four of his plays have premiered in Scarborough at either the Library Theatre, the Stephen Joseph Theatre In The Round or the Stephen Joseph Theatre.
  • Alan Ayckbourn's first West End transfer was Mr Whatnot in 1964. It was not successful.
  • Alan Ayckbourn's second West End transfer was Relatively Speaking in 1967. It was considerably more successful….
  • As of writing, 39 of his full-length plays have been produced in London's West End or at the National Theatre.
  • He is believed to be the only playwright to have had plays running simultaneously in the commercial West End, the National Theatre and the London fringe at the same time.
  • In 1975, he had five plays running simultaneously in the West End - a record at the time.
  • As of writing, nine of his plays have been produced on Broadway (not including Off Broadway).
  • In 1975, he had four plays running simultaneously on Broadway - a record at the time
  • Alan Ayckbourn's plays have been translated into more than 35 languages including Welsh, Esperanto, Hebrew and Japanese.
  • His plays have also been adapted for film, television and radio - although Alan Ayckbourn himself has only ever written one screenplay.
  • He is the only playwright to have won both the Laurence Olivier Awards Special Award and the Special Tony Award For Lifetime Achievement In Theatre.
All information correct at time of writing.

Copyright: Simon Murgatroyd. Please do not reproduce without permission of the copyright holder.