Michael Frayn, 1933–, English playwright and novelist, b. London. After graduating from Cambridge he worked as a reporter and columnist for the Manchester Guardian and the Observer. As a playwright he is probably best known for Noises Off (1982, film 1992), a farce within a farce concerning an English traveling theater troupe. His other notable plays include the dramas Copenhagen (1998, Tony Award), about a meeting between Bohr and Heisenberg and the moral questions surrounding the atomic bomb, and Democracy (2003), about the devotion and disloyalty of an East German spy working as an aide to West German chancellor Willy Brandt. Among his other plays are Clouds (1976), Donkeys' Years (1977), Benefactors (1984), Look Look (1990), Here (1993), and Afterlife (2008). He has also written screenplays and scripts for television. Frayn's novels include The Tin Men (1965), The Russian Interpreter (1966), A Very Private Life (1968), A Landing on the Sun (1991), Now You Know (1992), Headlong (1999), Spies (2002), and Skios (2012). His nonfiction books concerning philosophy are Constructions (1974) and The Human Touch (2006); his travel pieces are collected in Travels with a Typewriter (2009), and his theater pieces in Stage Directions (2008).
See his memoir, My Father's Fortune (2010); study by M. Moseley (2006).