Since 1960, a Broadway season without a Neil Simon comedy or musical has been rare one. During the 1966-67 Season, BAREFOOT IN THE PARK, SWEET CHARITY and THE STAR-SPANGLED GIRL were all running simultaneously; in the 1970-71 Season, Broadway theatergoers had their choice of PLAZA SUITE, LASTOF THE RED HOT LOVERS and PROMISES, PROMISES. Next came THE PRISONER OF SECOND AVENUE, THE SUNSHINE BOYS, THE GOOD DOCTOR, GOD’S FAVORITE, CALIFORNIA SUITE and CHAPTER TWO. The author’s most recent stage successes have been BRIGHTON BEACH MEMOIRS (1986), BILOXI BLUES (1986) and BROADWAY BOUND (1972).
Mr. Simon began his writing career in television and later established himself as America’s leading playwright of comedy by creating a succession of Broadway hits. He has also written extensively for the screen. By his own analysis, “Doc” Simon has always been “that person sitting in the corner who’s observing it all,” an insight he explores in his introduction entitled “Portrait of the Writer as a Schizophrenic,” written for the antholog of his plays published by Random House. That volume, THE COMEDY OF NEIL SIMON, is a tribute to the brilliance of its author, as are the Tony Award he received for Best Playwright of 1965 and his selection as Cue magazine’s Entertainer of the Year for 1972.