Irish playwright, born in Omagh, Northern Ireland in 1929. Friel is Ireland's preeminent modern playwright, both prolific, much-performed and internationally renowned. His plays include Translations, Faith Healer, Philadelphia Here I Come, The Freedom of the City and Dancing at Lughnasa, which won the Tony Award for Best Play in 1992.

Friel was also one of the founders, along with poet Seamus Heaney, actor Stephen Rea and academic Seamus Deane, of the Field Day theatre company in Derry in 1980.

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