America
3.8k readers

Famous Playwrights from the United States

Updated October 13, 2018 3.8k views846 items

List of notable or famous playwrights from the United States, with bios and photos, including the top playwrights born in the United States and even some popular playwrights who immigrated to the United States. If you're trying to find out the names of famous American playwrights then this list is the perfect resource for you. These playwrights are among the most prominent in their field, and information about each well-known playwright from the United States is included when available.

List is made up of people like Steve Martin and Tyler Perry.

This historic playwrights from the United States list can help answer the questions "Who are some American playwrights of note?" and "Who are the most famous playwrights from the United States?" These prominent playwrights of the United States may or may not be currently alive, but what they all have in common is that they're all respected American playwrights.

Use this list of renowned American playwrights to discover some new playwrights that you aren't familiar with. Don't forget to share this list by clicking one of the social media icons at the top or bottom of the page. {#nodes}
Photo:
...more
  • 1
    Tyler Perry

    BirthplaceNew Orleans, Louisiana, United States of America

    Tyler Perry (born Emmitt Perry Jr.; September 13, 1969) is an American actor, playwright,... more on Wikipedia

    More Tyler Perry 

    The Best Tyler Perry Movies#205 of 269 The Most Trustworthy Celebrities in the World

  • 2
    Steve Martin

    BirthplaceWaco, Texas, United States of America

    Stephen Glenn Martin (born August 14, 1945) is an American actor, comedian, writer, filmmaker,... more on Wikipedia

    More Steve Martin 

    The Best Steve Martin Movies of All Time, Ranked27 Of Steve Martin's Funniest Tweets

  • 3
    Woody Allen

    BirthplaceNew York City, New York, United States of America

    Heywood "Woody" Allen (born December 1, 1935) is an American director, writer, actor, and... more on Wikipedia

    More Woody Allen 

    The Best Woody Allen MoviesThe Best Movies Directed by Woody Allen

  • 4
    Maya Angelou

    Maya Angelou

    Dec. at 86 (1928-2014)

    BirthplaceSt. Louis, Missouri, United States of America

    Maya Angelou ( (listen); born Marguerite Annie Johnson; April 4, 1928 – May 28, 2014) was an... more on Wikipedia

    More Maya Angelou 

    The Best Maya Angelou Quotes#437 of 2,443 The Most Influential People of All Time

  • 5
    Ayn Rand

    Ayn Rand

    Dec. at 77 (1905-1982)

    BirthplaceSaint Petersburg, Russia

    Ayn Rand (; born Alisa Zinovyevna Rosenbaum; February 2 [O.S. January 20] 1905 – March 6,... more on Wikipedia

    More Ayn Rand 

    The Best Ayn Rand BooksThe Best Ayn Rand Quotes

  • 6
    Lewis Black

    BirthplaceUSA, Silver Spring, Maryland

    Lewis Niles Black (born August 30, 1948) is an American stand-up comedian, author, playwright,... more on Wikipedia

    More Lewis Black 

    The Best Lewis Black Albums of All Time#228 of 339 The Funniest People Of All Time

  • 7
    Orson Welles

    Orson Welles

    Dec. at 70 (1915-1985)

    BirthplaceKenosha, Wisconsin, United States of America

    George Orson Welles (May 6, 1915 – October 10, 1985) was an American actor, director, writer... more on Wikipedia

    More Orson Welles 

    The 1938 Fake News Story That Mobilized The Navy... In Fear Of Aliens#248 of 1,357 The Greatest Minds of All Time

  • 8
    Gore Vidal

    Gore Vidal

    Dec. at 87 (1925-2012)

    BirthplaceWest Point, Contiguous United States, New York, Orange County, United States of America

    Eugene Luther Gore Vidal (; born Eugene Louis Vidal, October 3, 1925 – July 31, 2012) was an... more on Wikipedia

    More Gore Vidal 

    The Best Gore Vidal Books#127 of 160 The Most Ridiculous Political Pundits

  • 9
    Lisa Edelstein

    BirthplaceBoston, Massachusetts, United States of America

    Lisa Edelstein (; born May 21, 1967) is an American actress and playwright. Edelstein is known... more on Wikipedia

    More Lisa Edelstein 

    #877 of 1,883 The Greatest Actors & Actresses in Entertainment History#219 of 461 The Best TV Actors of All Time

  • 10
    Harvey Fierstein

    BirthplaceNew York City, New York, United States of America

    Harvey Forbes Fierstein ( FIRE-steen; born June 6, 1954) is an American actor, playwright, and... more on Wikipedia

    More Harvey Fierstein 

    #45 of 125 The Greatest Broadway Stars of All Time#21 of 40 The Greatest Gay Icons in Film

  • 11
    Laurence Fishburne

    BirthplaceAugusta, Georgia, United States of America

    Laurence John Fishburne III (born July 30, 1961) is an American actor, playwright, producer,... more on Wikipedia

    More Laurence Fishburne 

    The Best Laurence Fishburne Movies#6 of 22 Unicef Goodwill Ambassadors For The United States

  • 12
    Mae West

    Mae West

    Age: Died at 87 (1893-1980)

    BirthplaceBushwick, New York City, New York, United States of America

    Mary Jane "Mae" West (August 17, 1893 – November 22, 1980) was an American actress, singer,... more on Wikipedia

    More Mae West 

    The Best Mae West Movies#306 of 853 The Best Actresses in Film History

  • 13
    Tennessee Williams

    Tennessee Williams

    Dec. at 72 (1911-1983)

    BirthplaceColumbus, Mississippi, Lowndes County, United States of America, United States

    Thomas Lanier Williams III (March 26, 1911 – February 25, 1983), known by his pen name... more on Wikipedia

    More Tennessee Williams 

    #81 of 1,172 The Best Writers of All Time#15 of 342 The Greatest American Writers of All Time

  • 14
    Robert Frost

    Robert Frost

    Dec. at 89 (1874-1963)

    BirthplaceCalifornia

    Robert Lee Frost (March 26, 1874 – January 29, 1963) was an American poet. His work was... more on Wikipedia
  • 15
    Langston Hughes

    Langston Hughes

    Dec. at 65 (1902-1967)

    BirthplaceJoplin, Missouri, United States of America

    James Mercer Langston Hughes (February 1, 1902 – May 22, 1967) was an American poet, social... more on Wikipedia

    More Langston Hughes 

    #139 of 171 The Best Short Story Writers of All Time#98 of 111 The Best English Poets of All Time

  • 16
    Howard Zinn

    Howard Zinn

    Dec. at 88 (1922-2010)

    BirthplaceNew York City, New York, United States of America

    Howard Zinn (August 24, 1922 – January 27, 2010) was an American historian, playwright, and... more on Wikipedia

    More Howard Zinn 

    #417 of 438 Famous Men You'd Want to Have a Beer With#81 of 105 The Most Influential Contemporary Americans

  • 17
    Aaron Sorkin

    BirthplaceManhattan, New York City, New York, United States of America

    Aaron Benjamin Sorkin (born June 9, 1961) is an American screenwriter, director, producer, and... more on Wikipedia
  • 18
    James Baldwin

    James Baldwin

    Dec. at 63 (1924-1987)

    BirthplaceHarlem, New York City, New York

    James Arthur Baldwin (August 2, 1924 – December 1, 1987) was an American novelist, playwright,... more on Wikipedia
  • 19
    Neil Simon

    Neil Simon

    Age: 93

    BirthplaceNew York City, New York, United States of America

    Marvin Neil Simon (July 4, 1927 – August 26, 2018) was an American playwright, screenwriter... more on Wikipedia
  • 20
    Peter Stormare

    BirthplaceKumla, Sweden

    Peter Rolf Ingvar Storm (born 27 August 1953), known professionally as Peter Stormare (Swedish... more on Wikipedia

    More Peter Stormare 

    #15 of 25 The 25 Best Comic Book Villain Movie Performances of All Time#29 of 38 Actors You Completely Forgot Were On 'Seinfeld'

  • 21
    Larry Kramer

    BirthplaceEastern United States, Fairfield County, New England, Connecticut, United States of America

    Larry Kramer (born June 25, 1935) is an American playwright, author, film producer, public... more on Wikipedia
  • 22
    Arthur Laurents

    Arthur Laurents

    Age: Died at 94 (1917-2011)

    BirthplaceNew York City, USA, New York

    Arthur Laurents (July 14, 1917 – May 5, 2011) was an American playwright, stage director and... more on Wikipedia
  • 23
    Joyce Carol Oates

    BirthplaceLockport, New York

    Joyce Carol Oates (born June 16, 1938) is an American writer. Oates published her first book... more on Wikipedia

    More Joyce Carol Oates 

    The Best Joyce Carol Oates Books#190 of 303 The Best Novelists of All Time

  • 24
    Wallace Shawn

    BirthplaceNew York City, New York, United States of America

    Wallace Michael Shawn (born November 12, 1943) is an American character actor, voice artist,... more on Wikipedia

    More Wallace Shawn 

    #108 of 146 The Best Hallmark Channel Actors#8 of 27 The Best Actors And Actresses Whose Whole Thing Is Their Voice

  • 25
    Robert Anton Wilson

    Robert Anton Wilson

    Dec. at 75 (1932-2007)

    BirthplaceNew York City, USA, New York

    Robert Anton Wilson (born Robert Edward Wilson; January 18, 1932 – January 11, 2007) was an... more on Wikipedia

    More Robert Anton Wilson 

    #179 of 208 The Best Science-Fiction Authors#45 of 69 The Most Psychedelic People Ever