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Bess Wohl

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Bess Wohl BIO

Bess Wohl’s plays include SMALL MOUTH SOUNDS (featured in top ten lists in The New York Times, The Guardian, New York Post, and others, currently on a national tour), AMERICAN HERO, BARCELONA (multiple Ovation Award nominations), TOUCHED, IN, CATS TALK BACK and PRETTY FILTHY, in collaboration with Michael Friedman and The Civilians (Lucille Lortel and Drama Desk nominations for Outstanding Musical). Her newest play, CONTINUITY, was recently developed at Chicago’s Goodman Theater as part of the New Stages festival.

She also writes for film and television and her film, IRREPLACEABLE YOU, premiered on Netflix in February of 2018, starring Gugu Mbatha-Raw, Christopher Walken, Kate McKinnon and Steve Coogan. She won an Athena Award for her original screenplay, VIRGINIA and her screenplay, IN, was included on Hollywood’s Black List of best scripts. She has developed original television projects for HBO, ABC, USA, FOX and others.

Her plays have been produced or developed at theaters in New York and around the country, including Second Stage, Manhattan Theatre Club, Ars Nova, The Williamstown Theatre Festival, The Geffen Playhouse, Goodman Theater, People’s Light and Theatre Company, The Contemporary American Theater Festival, Vineyard Arts Project, The Pioneer Theatre, The Pittsburgh Public Theater, The Northlight Theater, TheaterWorks New Works Fesitval, Ojai Playwright's Conference, the Cape Cod Theatre Project, PlayPenn and the New York International Fringe Festival (Award for Best Overall Production).

In 2015, Bess won the Sam Norkin special Drama Desk Award for “establishing herself as an important voice in New York theater.” Other awards include the John Gassner Outer Critics Circle Award. She currently holds new play commissions from Lincoln Center, Manhattan Theater Club, Second Stage, The Williamstown Theatre Festival and Hartford Stage. She is a MacDowell fellow, an associate artist with the New York based investigative theater troupe, The Civilians, and an alumna of Ars Nova’s Play Group.

In her previous life as an actress, Bess appeared onstage in New York and regionally, and in numerous films and TV shows where she has given birth, solved crimes, committed crimes, been wrongly accused, and come back from the dead.

She is a graduate of Harvard and the Yale School of Drama.

Bess Wohl Photos



Bess Wohl Productions

[Off-Broadway, 2014]



Bess Wohl Awards and Nominations

Tony Awards - 2020 - Best Play

Bess Wohl, Grand Horizons

Drama Desk Awards - 2015 - Sam Norkin Off-Broadway Award

Bess WohlAmerican Hero, Pretty Filthy, Small Mouth Sounds

Bess Wohl Videos

Bess Wohl News

Eric Berryman, Johanna Day & More Join SCENE PARTNERS World Premiere at Vineyard Theatre

Discover the latest additions to the cast of 'Scene Partners' at the Vineyard Theatre. Learn more about the exciting world premiere production and stay up-to-date with the latest news.

Second Stage Founder Carole Rothman Will Depart After 45 Years

Carole Rothman, the founder of Second Stage, the prestigious theater company that has launched the careers of some of the greatest American playwrights over the past 45 years, is leaving the company. 

Matthew Scott Returns to 54 Below With THE JESUS YEAR: A LETTER FROM MY DAD

Matthew Scott Returns to 54 Below With THE JESUS YEAR: A LETTER FROM MY DAD this month. The performance is on September 26th, 7PM. Learn more about the show and how to get tickets here!

Karen Allen & Reed Birney to Star in World Premiere Of Donald Margulies' LUNAR ECLIPSE at Shakespeare & Company

'Lunar Eclipse,' a new play by Donald Margulies, makes its world premiere at Shakespeare & Company. Directed by James Warwick, the play features Karen Allen and Reed Birney as a long-married couple reflecting on life and time during a lunar eclipse.

Corey Stoll, Natalie Gold & Alyssa Emily Marvin to Join Sarah Paulson in APPROPRIATE

Golden Globe Award nominee Corey Stoll (“House of Cards,” “Billions”), Natalie Gold (“Succession”), and Alyssa Emily Marvin (Grey House) join Emmy, Golden Globe, and SAG Award winner Sarah Paulson in Branden Jacobs-Jenkins’ APPROPRIATE at Second Stage Theater, directed by Lila Neugebauer.

Players Guild of Leonia to Present GRAND HORIZONS Next Month

Players Guild of Leonia, founded in 1919, will present Bess Wohl's, Grand Horizons, at the Civil War Drill Hall Theatre. Get performance and ticket information here!

Jessica Lange, Jim Parsons, Celia Keenan-Bolger Will Lead Paula Vogel's MOTHER PLAY on Broadway

The world premiere of MOTHER PLAY, written by Pulitzer Prize winner Paula Vogel and directed by Tina Landau is coming to Broadway. We have all the details on who will star in the new play!

RUSSIAN TROLL FARM: A WORKPLACE COMEDY Will Play Off-Broadway In January 2024

Sarah Gancher's Russian Troll Farm: A Workplace Comedy, which premiered at Geva Theatrethis past spring, will play Off-Broadway later this season at the Vineyard Theatre in New York City.

HADESTOWN to Return to Los Angeles for a Limited Engagement in October

Discover the dates and locations for the highly anticipated limited engagement of Hadestown in Los Angeles this October. Don't miss your chance to witness the magic of this renowned musical.

Ars Nova & National Black Theatre to Present World Premiere of (PRAY), A SACRED OFFERING by nicHi douglas

Discover the world premiere of (pray), a captivating production presented by Ars Nova and National Black Theatre in New York City. Don't miss this limited engagement performance that explores the profound power of sacred offerings.

Yale Rep's WISH YOU WERE HERE Cast and Creative Team Revealed

Yale Repertory Theatre  begins its 2023–24 season with Wish You Were Here by Sanaz Toossi, directed by Sivan Battat, October 5–28, at Yale Repertory Theatre. Opening Night is Thursday, October 12, which is also press night.

Vineyard Theatre Sets World Premiere & New York Premiere for 2023-24 Season

Discover the eagerly anticipated lineup of world premiere and New York premiere shows coming to Vineyard Theatre for their 2023-24 season. Get all the details on performance dates and highlights in this comprehensive article.

Review: GRAND HORIZONS at Kansas City Actors Theatre

“Grand Horizons” is the tongue-in–cheek moniker given the senior development to which the fifty-year, mostly amicable marriage of Bill and Nancy French has recently been downsized. “Buckle your seat belts… it is going to be a bumpy (and funny) ride.”

Stage West Presents The Touching Comedy GRAND HORIZONS By Bess Wohl

Nancy and Bill…50 years together and counting. Only problem?  Nancy wants out!  Stage West presents the regional premiere of the funny, surprising, and sometimes painfully honest Tony-nominee Grand Horizons, by Bess Wohl, which begins a 5-week run on Thursday, August 31. 

Ars Nova Unveils Exciting 2023-2024 Season Featuring Two World Premieres and Flexible Ticket Pricing

Get a sneak peek of Ars Nova's highly anticipated 2023-2024 season, featuring two world premiere productions. Discover how you can secure your tickets at affordable prices for these must-see shows. Don't miss out on the excitement!

THE HIP HOP NUTCRACKER Is Coming To The Fisher Theatre in December

As artists, industry and fans celebrate the 50th anniversary of Hip Hop around the globe, The Hip Hop Nutcracker has announced its 2023 tour to more than 25 U.S. cities including Detroit’s Fisher Theatre for ONE SHOW ONLY on Saturday, December 9.

THE HIP HOP NUTCRACKER Will Return on National Tour to More Than 25 Cities

A holiday dance mash-up for the whole family during hip hop's 50th year! As artists, industry and fans celebrate the 50th anniversary of Hip Hop around the globe today, The Hip Hop Nutcracker announced its 2023 tour to more than 25 U.S. cities.

Ensemble Studio Theatre Unveils Exciting Lineup for the 2023-24 Season

Get a sneak peek into the highly anticipated 2023-24 season at Ensemble Studio Theatre, featuring an impressive lineup of plays and events that are sure to captivate theater enthusiasts. Find out what to expect and mark your calendars for an unforgettable theatrical experience.

James Monroe Iglehart, Michael Urie, Leslie Rodriguez Kritzer Will Lead SPAMALOT; Ethan Slater & Christopher Fitzgerald Join Cast

The court of the St. James Theatre has assembled! The Tony Award-winning Best Musical comedy Monty Python’s SPAMALOT has just announced its cast and we have the full list!

Kellie Overbey, Carmen Zilles & T. Ryder Smith to Star in Christina Masciotti's NO GOOD THINGS DWELL IN THE FLESH

Experience the riveting performances of Kellie Overbey, Carmen Zilles, and T. Ryder Smith in 'NO GOOD THINGS DWELL IN THE FLESH,' a compelling play by Christina Masciotti. Don't miss this powerful production that will leave you captivated.


Bess Wohl has written 4 shows including Small Mouth Sounds (Playwright), Continuity (Playwright), Make Believe (Playwright), Grand Horizons (Playwright).

Bess Wohl has been nominated for several awards throughout her career. She was nominated for Best Play at the Tony Awards for "Grand Horizons." Additionally, she received a nomination for the John Gassner Award at the Outer Critics Circle Awards for "Small Mouth Sounds." Wohl also received a nomination for the Sam Norkin Off-Broadway Award at the Drama Desk Awards for her work on "American Hero," "Pretty Filthy," and "Small Mouth Sounds."

Bess Wohl has won several awards for her work in the theater. She received the John Gassner Award from the Outer Critics Circle Awards for her play "Small Mouth Sounds." Additionally, she was honored with the Sam Norkin Off-Broadway Award from the Drama Desk Awards for her plays "American Hero," "Pretty Filthy," and "Small Mouth Sounds." These accolades recognize her talent and contributions to the world of theater.

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