Prize winning author and playwright, Sarah Ruhl, will be celebrating the release of her new book, Letters From Max, in a special discussion with Tony award-winning actress, Mary-Louise Parker at The Strand’s Book Room(828 Broadway, New York, NY 10003) on Thursday, September 20th from 7–8 PM. For admission info, please call 212-473-1452 or visit www.strandbooks.com.
Playwright Sarah Ruhl’s book is co-authored with Max Ritvo, a poet and former playwriting student of Ruhl’s who passed away in 2016. Studded with poems and songs, Letters From Max is a deeply moving portrait of a friendship, and a shimmering exploration of love, art, mortality, and the afterlife. Letters From Max is available.
Ruhl explains, “Max Ritvo was a beautiful poet and human being, and he was also my student at Yale for a year. I think he was a genius, and lots of other people do too, but what’s more, he had a genius for friendship. The book is one part reminiscence, one part poetry, and one part correspondence. In a way, it’s an overheard conversation I had with Max for about four years as Max grappled with cancer, wrote ferociously, made jokes, contemplated the afterlife, wrote two astounding books of poetry, gave of himself profoundly to the people around him, and ultimately succumbed to Ewing’s Sarcoma two years ago. All of us who knew Max miss him terribly, and the book was a way to remember him.”* * * * *
Sarah Ruhl’s plays include In the Next Room, or the Vibrator Play (Pulitzer Prize finalist, Tony Award nominee), The Clean House (Pulitzer Prize finalist, winner of the Susan Smith Blackburn Prize); Passion Play, a cycle; Dead Man’s Cell Phone(winner of the Helen Hayes Award); and, most recently, Stage Kiss and Dear Elizabeth. She has been the recipient of a MacArthur Fellowship, the Helen Merrill Emerging Playwrights Award, the Whiting Writers’ Award, and the PEN/Laura Pels International Foundation for Theater Award for a midcareer playwright. Her collection of essays 100 Essays I Don’t Have Time to Write was named a New York Times Notable Book of 2014. She is currently on the faculty of the Yale School of Drama and lives in Brooklyn with her family.
Mary-Louise Parker is an Tony award-winning actor. She is known for her work on Showtime’s Weeds, Mike Nichols’ Angels in America, and The West Wing and in TV movie The Robber Bride. She recently starred in the miniseries When We Rise, Mr. Mercedes, and Billions. Other television credits include Sugartime, Christmas in Conway, Saint Maybe, A Place for Annie, Vinegar Hill, Miracle Run, and many others. She has appeared in several films including The Assassination of Jesse James, Saved!, Behaving Badly, Romance & Cigarettes, Fried Green Tomatoes, Bullets Over Broadway, and many more. Parker has originated multiple roles, including in Sarah Ruhl’s Dead Man’s Cell Phone. Mary-Louise was an on-staff contributer atEsquire magazine for over a decade, and has written for The New York Times, O magazine, Bullett, Bust, The Riveter, In Style, Hemispheres, and others. She has also written a number of books.