Lyle Leverich Biography

hank stramClaim to Fame: Author, Tom: The Unknown Tennessee Williams
DOB: 1920
Date of Death: December 17, 1999
Diabetes Type: unknown

Biographer Lyle Leverich was born in Brooklyn, NY, as Augustus Lyle Leverich, Jr. He served in the Navy during World War II and after a momentary, unsuccessful career writing screenplays and stories, he opened a bookstore in Stinson Beach, CA. From there, he scored his role as producer.

Leverich met Tennessee Williams while producing Williams Two-Character Play in San Francisco, CA. Once Williams officially requested, Leverich began writing his biography that documents the first 34 years of the playwrights life, outlining the emotional and ancestral sources of Williams ingenuity and defining how he surfaced as one of the most important American artists of his century.

Leverich and Williams were in close contact until Williams death in 1983. However, one of the trustees of Williams estate refused to let Leverich quote from Williams unpublished material; the book was published after her death in 1994. Leverichs book, Tom: The Unknown Tennessee Williams, won the George Freedley Award as the best theater book of the year and has since been acknowledged as the respected work on the subject.

Leverich was working on a second volume, Tenn: The Timeless World of Tennessee Williams, which was to cover the rest of Williams life, when he died at the age of 79 from a heart seizure after complications from diabetes.


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Last Modified Date: July 14, 2015

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by Brenda Bell
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