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Broadway Lights Will Dim This Week in Memory of Playwright Peter Shaffer


The Broadway community mourns the loss of two-time Tony Award® - winning playwright Peter Shaffer, who passed away on June 6th in County Cork, Ireland at age 90. The marquees of Broadway theatres in New York will be dimmed in his memory on Thursday, June 16, 2016, at exactly 6:45pm for one minute.

Shaffer's play, Equus, won the 1975 Tony Award for Best Play. His screen adaptation of the play was nominated for a Best Adapted Screenplay Oscar in 1977. Amadeus won the 1981 Tony Award for Best Play. His screenplay adaptation of the play won the Best Adapted Screenplay Oscar as well as the Golden Globe Best Screenplay in 1984.

"The acclaimed British dramatist Peter Shaffer who wrote Amadeus and Equus leaves behind a legacy of words through his notable body of critically and commercially successful works," said Charlotte St. Martin, President of the Broadway League. "He will be missed, and our thoughts are with his family and friends."

Shaffer wrote more than 18 plays, including Amadeus, Equus, Black Comedy/White Lies, Lettice and Lovage, The Royal Hunt of the Sun and Five Finger Exercise. His first show on Broadway, Five Finger Exercise opened in 1959. His last Broadway production was a revival Equus in 2008.

His plays Amadeus (1981) and Equus (1975) both won TONY AWARDS for Best Play. Lettice and Lovage (1990) and Black Comedy/White Lies (1967) were both nominated for Best Play. He won an Academy Award for writing the film version of Amadeus.

Several of Shaffer's plays have been adapted to film, including Five Finger Exercise (1962), The Royal Hunt of the Sun (1969), The Public Eye (1962), from which he adapted the 1972 film Follow Me!, Equus (1977), andAmadeus (1984), which won eight Academy Awards including Best Picture. Shaffer received two Academy Award nominations for adapting his plays Equus and Amadeus for the big screen. For writing the screenplay forAmadeus, Shaffer received both the 1984 Best Screenplay Golden Globe and the 1984 Best Adapted Screenplay Oscar.

Shaffer was awarded a British national honor, Commander of the British Empire, in 1987, and he was knighted in 2001.

He is survived by his brother Brian, nephews Milo and Mark, and nieces Cressida and Claudia, whose father and Peter's twin, the playwright and screenwriter Anthony Shaffer ("Sleuth"), died in 2001.

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