Kennedy, Adrienne, 1931–, American playwright, b. Pittsburgh, Pa., as Adrienne Lita Hawkins, grad. Ohio State Univ. (B.A., 1953), studied Columbia (1954–56). Her usually one-act memory plays explore the experiences of African Americans, especially women. Her first produced play, Funnyhouse of a Negro (1964, Obie) takes place in the mind of the protagonist and explores her mixed-race background. Other plays include The Owl Answers (1965), A Rat's Mass (1967), A Movie Star Has to Star in Black and White (1976) June and Jean in Concert (1995, Obie), and Sleep Deprivation Chamber (1996, Obie). Her two-character play He Brought Her Heart Back in a Box (2018) follows the trials of a courtship between a biracial woman and a white man in 1940s small-town Georgia. Kennedy has also written a memoir, People Who Led to My Plays (1987).
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Kennedy, Adrienne(1931– ) playwright; born in Pittsburgh, Pa. Her Funnyhouse of a Negro, about the sufferings of a racially mixed woman, won an Obie award in 1964. She also wrote In His Own Write (1967), based on John Lennon's writings.
The Cambridge Dictionary of American Biography, by John S. Bowman. Copyright © Cambridge University Press 1995. Reproduced with permission.