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University of Texas at Austin

Terrence McNally:

A Preliminary Inventory of His Papers at the Harry Ransom Center

Creator: McNally, Terrence, 1938-2020
Title: Terrence McNally Papers
Dates: 1950s-2019
Extent: 60 boxes, 2 oversize boxes, 2 oversize folders (26.8 linear feet), and 2148 electronic files (30.5 GB)
Abstract: The papers, which document McNally's career as a dramatist, include all of his major works for stage, screen, and television, as well as correspondence, electronic files, posters, production photographs, programs, and reviews. Articles by and about McNally, awards, and photographs are present in the papers. His public appearances, which include benefit performances, conferences, lectures, speeches, tributes, and memorials, are also represented.
Call Number: Manuscript Collection MS-04844
Language: English
Access: Open for research. Researchers must create an online Research Account and agree to the Materials Use Policy before using archival materials. To request access to electronic files, please email Reference.
Restrictions on Use: Certain restrictions apply to the use of electronic files. Researchers must agree to the Materials Use Policy for Electronic Files before accessing them. Original computer disks and forensic disk images are restricted. Copying electronic files, including screenshots and printouts, is not permitted.

Administrative Information

Acquisition: Gifts, 1999-2003 (Gift no. 11458, 11513, 11686, 11870, 12188)
Processed by: Liz Murray, Emily Barker, Sean Castilla, 2003 Born digital materials processed, arranged, and described by Chance Adams and Brenna Edwards, 2015-2022.

Harry Ransom Center, The University of Texas at Austin

Scope and Contents

This collection of Terrence McNally's papers includes all his major works for stage, screen, and television, as well as unproduced works, correspondence, and career-related material. McNally's achievements include numerous plays, operas, and musicals such as Corpus Christi; Dead Man Walking; Frankie and Johnny in the Clair de Lune; The Full Monty; Kiss of the Spider Woman; Lips Together, Teeth Apart; The Lisbon Traviata; Love! Valour! Compassion!; Master Class; A Perfect Ganesh; Ragtime; The Rink; The Ritz; and The Visit. His collaborations with John Kander, Fred Ebb, and Jake Heggie, as well as his long-time association with the Manhattan Theatre Club, have been particularly productive and rewarding. Early in his career he was the recipient of two Guggenheim fellowships, followed by numerous awards, including four Tony Awards, an Emmy Award for "Andre's Mother," and Drama Desk and Lucille Lortel Awards, among others. McNally's generous gift of his papers to the Ransom Center incorporates material previously held at the Wisconsin Historical Society. In all, the collection dates from McNally's high school years through 2002.
The collection is organized in three series: I. Works; II. Career-Related and Personal; and III. Works of Others.
The works in Series I are arranged alphabetically by title. Unless described otherwise, the works are stage plays. Within titles, scripts are presented in order of creation, followed by correspondence, posters, production photographs, programs, and reviews. Translations and international productions are grouped separately, under each title.
The Career-Related and Personal material in Series II includes articles by and about McNally, awards, correspondence, interviews, papers and notes from high school and college years, and photographs, including an early series by Richard Avendon. Correspondence is arranged chronologically from 1955 to 2002. McNally's many public appearances, including benefit performances, conferences, lectures, speeches, tributes, and memorials, are also well-represented. His love of the opera is reflected in the opera-related projects and writings including his long-standing participation in the Metropolitan Opera Radio Network's "Opera News on the Air," as well as articles written on the subject.
Series III contains articles and programs collected by McNally but not directly related to his work, as well as writings by Tom Bywaters, Steven Lyons, and Royce Ryton.
Numerous books, serials, audio tapes, videos, compact discs, and memorabilia received with the papers were transferred to appropriate departments within the Ransom Center.

Terrence McNally Papers--Folder List