Bio

Rich Orloff writes a lot!  One of the most popular unknown playwrights in the country, Rich’s plays have received thousands of productions, numerous awards, and oodles of laughter.  From his acclaimed comedic explorations of such topics as disability (FUNNY AS A CRUTCH) and an unwanted pregnancy (ENGAGEMENT RULES) to documentary-style plays such as VIETNAM 101: THE WAR ON CAMPUS (also known as DAYS OF POSSIBILITIES), Rich’s plays range widely in style and subject matter, but they all combine irreverence and compassion.

Over the last few years, Rich’s theatrical writing has expanded to new forms.  He has performed his autobiographical monologue IT’S A BEAUTIFUL WOUND at both theaters and mental health conferences around the country.  BLESSINGS FROM THE PANDEMIC, a performance piece, has been performed over Zoom by both theaters and schools, and was published by TRW Plays.  ESTHER IN THE SPOTLIGHT, his first musical comedy, has been performed in New York City, Miami, Toronto and Tel Aviv.

Rich’s poems have appeared in a dozen magazines and on-line journals you’ve probably never heard of.  Rich shares them regularly via email, and they’re read by over 2000 ministers, rabbis, other spiritual leaders, and friends.  His poems have been shared in churches, synagogues, meditation and yoga retreats, and a Unitarian newsletter in Australia.  (Rich has stopped predicting where his poems may appear next.)

Rich’s full-length plays have had over 300 productions and have been presented across the country at such theaters as Arizona Theatre Company, Arkansas Repertory Theatre, Dayton Playhouse, Florida Studio Theatre, New Jersey Rep, Next Act Theatre (Milwaukee), Phoenix Stage Company (Connecticut), Phoenix Theatre Company (Indianapolis), Phoenix Theatre Company (in Phoenix!), and also in Canada, England, Spain, France, the Netherlands, Germany, Austria, Switzerland, Italy, Serbia, Greece, Romania, Bulgaria, Israel, South Africa, India, Malaysia, Australia and New Zealand.  He’s had three plays produced in Finland.  (Thank you, Finland!)

Author of over a dozen one-acts and 80 short plays, Rich’s short works have had over 2000 productions on six of the seven continents… and a staged reading in Antarctica!

Rich’s short comedies have been published seven times in the annual Best American Short Plays series and five times in the annual Best Ten-Minute Plays anthology.  They’ve also been included in the bilingual collection An Anthology of Contemporary American Plays (published in China), in The Bedford Guide to Literature, and in anthologies published by Random House and Western Michigan University Press.  Playscripts has published eight volumes of his short plays. (For details, visit Playscripts.com.)

Rich has also written for newspapers, magazines, radio, TV, industrial films and educational videos.  While in Kosovo in 2000, Rich wrote the children’s play SNOW WHITE AND THE SEVEN DWARFS FIGHT TUBERCULOSIS for Doctors of the World.

Born and raised in Chicago, and a graduate of Oberlin College in Ohio, Rich currently lives in New York City.  He loves getting out of town frequently to remind himself what the rest of the world is like.