Avery Hopwood

His Life and Plays
Jack F. Sharrar
Foreword by Nicholas Delbanco
The biography of one of the foremost playwrights of the Jazz Age


In 1920 Avery Hopwood was America's most successful playwright, achieving the distinction of having four concurrent hits on the Broadway stage.

Jack F. Sharrar's critical biography makes use of a rich array of primary sources—including Hopwood's unpublished novel and his letters to such friends as Gertrude Stein, Carl Van Vechten, and Mary Roberts Rinehart—to chronicle Hopwood's life and career. The book provides fresh insights on the playwright, his plays and the personalities who produced and performed in them, by surveying the commercial theater of the period. Until recently out of print, the new edition includes a foreword by Nicholas Delbanco, director of the University of Michigan's Hopwood Awards in Creative Writing Program; an afterword by Sharrar that sheds new light on the passionate, tumultuous relationship between Hopwood and John Floyd; and many rare illustrations from American theater history.

Jack F. Sharrar, Ph.D. , is Director of Academic Affairs, American Conservatory Theater.

Nicholas Delbanco is Professor of English and Director of the University of Michigan's Hopwood Awards Program. His most recent novel is Old Scores (Warner Books, 1997).

Praise / Awards

  • "The definitive biography of this fascinating, somewhat tragic man, who so often made theatergoers forget their woes but who sometimes couldn't forget his own . . . . [A] wonderful book, as deep as it is entertaining."

Product Details

  • 6 x 9.
  • 312pp.
  • 7 drawings, 38 B&W photographs.
Available for sale worldwide

  • Hardcover
  • 1998
  • Available
  • 978-0-472-10963-0

Add to Cart
  • $64.95 U.S.