Estate of David French

David French (1939 – 2010) was one of Canada’s best-known and most successful playwrights. Among his works are the semi-autobiographical Mercer plays: Leaving Home, Of The Fields, Lately, Salt-Water Moon, 1949, and Soldier’s Heart.

Leaving Home, first produced at Toronto’s Tarragon Theatre in 1972, was named one of Canada’s 100 Most Influential Books (Literary Review of Canada) and one of the 1,000 Most Essential Plays in the English Language (Oxford Dictionary of Theatre). The Mercer plays have received productions in every region of Canada and throughout the United States (including a Broadway production of Of The Fields, Lately.) This quintet of plays about a Newfoundland family has also touched audiences in Europe, South America and Australia. French’s other works include the smash-hit backstage comedy Jitters, the pool-hall drama One Crack Out, the memory play That Summer, and translations of Chekhov’s The Seagull, and Strindberg’s Miss Julie.

In 1989, French was inducted into the Newfoundland Arts Hall of Honour, and in 2001 he was appointed an Officer of the Order of Canada. Born in Coley’s Point, Newfoundland, French made his home in Toronto, but spent thirty-nine summers at his cottage in Cable Head, PEI.  David French died in December of 2010. 

For more information about David French's life and work, please visit his website.