Born in Los Angeles, Mr. Hwang graduated from Stanford University in 1979. By 1978 he had already written his first play, FOB (Fresh Off the Boat), which won the 1981 Obie Award as the Best New Play of the season when Joseph Papp produced it off-Broadway in New York. Mr. Hwang attended the Yale School of Drama during 1980 and 1981. Through the 1980s, Hwang addressed wider concerns of race, gender, and culture in plays such as THE DANCE AND THE RAILROAD and FAMILY DEVOTIONS. His 1988 Broadway hit, M. BUTTERFLY, won the Tony Award for Best Play, the Outer Critics Circle Award, the Drama Desk Award, the John Gassner Award, and established him as a major modern American playwright. Subsequently, his play GOLDEN CHILD received a 1997 Obie Award for Playwriting, then moved to Broadway, where it received a 1998 Tony nomination for Best Play. His remake of Rodgers & Hammerstein’s FLOWER DRUM SONG earned him his third Tony nomination, for Best Book of a Musical, in 2003, and he represented internationally as co-author of Disney’s AIDA, now in its fifth year on Broadway. In 1998, East West Players christened their new main stage The David Henry Hwang Theatre.
Mr. Hwang has worked on and scripted numerous films, including the screen adaptation of M. BUTTERFLY, GOLDEN GATE, and POSSESSION (co-writer). His opera libretti include three projects with Philip Glass, as well as works with composers Bright Sheng and Osvaldo Golijov. He also co-wrote the song “Solo” with composer/performer Prince.