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Tarrell Alvin McCraney (born October 17, 1980) is an award-winning American playwright and actor. He is a member of Teo Castellanos/ D Projects Theater Company in Miami and in 2008 became RSC/Warwick International Playwright in Residence at the Royal Shakespeare Company.


McCraney attended the New World School of the Arts High School, (Miami, Fl) receiving the exemplary artist award and the Dean's Award in Theater. He matriculated into the Theater School at DePaul University and received his BFA in acting. In May 2007 he graduated from Yale School of Drama's playwriting program where he received the Cole Porter Playwriting Award upon graduation.

As an actor he has worked with directors such as Tina Landau of the Steppenwolf Theater Ensemble Chicago, IL, David Cromer and BJ Jones artistic director of the North Light Theater (where he co-starred in the Chicago Premiere of Joe Penhall's Blue/Orange), and began a lasting working relationship with Peter Brook and Marie-Helene Etienne of the Bouffes du Nord, Paris.

His Brother/Sister trilogy are set in the Louisiana Projects and explore Yoruba mythology, and Wig Out, which is set in New York drag clubs, explores McCraney's experiences as a gay, black man.[1]

The third play in the Brother/Sister trilogy, Marcus: or the Secret of the Sweet has been optioned by London's Young Vic Theatre.

McCraney heads up an impressive list of out media professionals[2] in the June/July 2009, Forty under 40, issue of The Advocate.


  • The Brother/Sister plays
    • The Brothers Size started as a workshop at the Yale School of Drama and appeared at the Under the Rader Festival at the Public Theater in New York produced by the Foundry Theater and in the IN-Festival at the McCarter Theater, Princeton, NJ 2007. The Brothers Size received its European premiere at the Young Vic in November 2007 to considerable acclaim and an Olivier Award nomination.
    • In The Red and Brown Water, part of the Public Theater's New Works Now Festival 2006 (directed by Tina Landau), winner of the 2007 Kendeda Award at the Alliance Theater Atlanta, GA. European premiere at the Young Vic, London in October 2008 .
    • Marcus; Or the Secret of Sweet appeared in the Carlotta Festival 2007 at the Yale School of Drama.
  • Other plays
    • Without/Sin, and Run Mourner, Run (adapted from Randall Kenan's short story) both received their première at the Yale Cabaret.
    • Wig Out! A play on the KIDZ was work-shopped at the Sundance Theater Lab Summer 2007 and premiered at Off-Broadway's Vineyard Theatre in 2008, before premiering overseas at London's Royal Court Theatre under the title Wig Out!.
    • The Breach, a play on Katrina, was commissioned by Southern Rep Theater, in New Orleans in the Summer of 2006. And received its world premiere August 2007 (marking the 2-year anniversary of the tragedy in New Orleans in New Orleans) as well as playing in December 2007 at the Seattle Rep Theater.




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