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John O'Keefe (playwright)

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John O'Keefe (born 1940) is an American playwright, director and solo performer. Notable awards include the 2002 Los Angeles Drama Critics Circle Award for Times Like These, and a Bessie Award for Shimmer, which was also made into a motion picture by American Playhouse.

Born in Waterloo, Iowa, in 1940, O'Keefe was raised in a series of Catholic orphanages and juvenile homes. He began singing in church choirs at the age of five and pursued his musical interests, subsequently receiving a vocal scholarship at the University of Iowa, where he earned a BA degree in philosophy and an MFA in theater.[citation needed]

O'Keefe moved to San Francisco in the early 1970s, beginning an affiliation with the Magic Theatre that continues to this day. O'Keefe also co-founded the Blake Street Hawkeyes, a performance-lab ensemble based in Berkeley. He wrote the libretto for Chrysalis, a new opera written with Clark Suprynowicz for the Berkeley Opera in 2006.[citation needed]

Major works

  • The Man in the Moon (1983)
  • Shimmer (1988)
  • The Promotion (1989)
  • The Bronte Cycle (2000)
  • Times Like These (2002)


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John O'Keefe (playwright)
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