Michael O'Brien

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Michael O'Brien

Michael O'Brien is a Canadian Theatre/Radio/Web Writer/Creator/Teacher. His original written works include Mad Boy Chronicle, Restitution, Shores of Wonder, and The Last Temptation of Christopher Robin. His adapted versions of classic and contemporary plays and novels have been produced on CBC Radio and on stages across Canada and beyond.

Life and Career

Michael was born in British Columbia and grew up in Northern Ontario and in London, UK. He is a graduate of the University of Ottawa (Theatre/English) and the National Theatre School of Canada (Playwriting/Directing). Since 1993, Michael has been based in Toronto. For several years, he worked at Young People's Theatre as Literary Manager, Playwright in Residence, and Assistant to Artistic Director Maja Ardal. At CBC Radio he created several radio dramas, both original works and dramas adapted from contemporary novels. Elsewhere, his stage works have appeared at Canadian Fringe Festivals, The Theatre Centre, The National Arts Centre (Atelier and Mainstage), Alberta Theatre Projects, Factory Theatre, The Shaw Festival, Two Planks and a Passion and Soulpepper Theatre, as well as 24th St Theatre (Los Angeles, USA) and Southwark Playhouse (London, UK). He has been nominated for the Governor-General's Award for Drama, Chalmers Awards, Dora Mavor Moore Awards, Writers' Guild of Canada Awards, and International Radio Awards. He has been part of the Banff Playwrights' Colony and The Stratford Festival Writer's Retreat. He has been adjudicator at The Sears Drama Festival, and visiting artist/speaker at McGill University, Bishop's College, St Clair College and Fanshawe College. Most recently, Michael was guest teacher/mentor at Soulpepper Academywhere he taught novel-to-stage adaptation. In 2016-17, Michael was guest/mentee with Sarah Garton Stanley at SpiderWebShow Performance, in Web Creation/Directing, thanks to Theatre Ontario's Professional Theatre Training Program. In 2018, his adaptation (w/ Tim Carroll) of "The Magician's Nephew" by C.S. Lewis opened the 2018 Season at The Shaw Festival.


Stage Works/Productions

Works Online

*SPIDERWIRE - A Web/Media Column for SpiderWebShow - Jan-Feb 2017

Works for Radio

  • Hearts of the World – CBC Radio One (WorldPlay Series). Prod. James Roy – 2005
  • Castle Grove (Episode One - Pilot) – CBC Radio One. Prod. James Roy – 2004
  • Winter's Tales (Episode One - "Someone Just For Me") – CBC Radio One. Prod. Gregory J. Sinclair – 2004
  • The Blind Assassin (ad. Margaret Atwood) – CBC Radio One. Prod. Ann Jansen – 2003
  • The Handmaid's Tale (ad. Margaret Atwood) – CBC Radio One. Prod. Ann Jansen – 2002
  • Shores of Wonder (drama, inspired by The Vinland Sagas) - CBC Radio One. Prod. Sally Han – 2000, 2001