ELLIOTT SIRKIN is a 1991 graduate of the Institute for Advanced Theatre Training at Harvard, and an honors BA from Johns Hopkins with a concentration in English literature before that. A freelance writer and occasional consultant, in the last 30 years his essays, reviews, and articles have appeared in, among other places, After Dark, American Film, The Atlantic Monthly, Ballet Review, The Boston Globe, Bostonia, The Chicago Sun-Times, The Chicago Tribune, Film Comment, Film Quarterly, Harvard Magazine, The Nation, New York Magazine, The New York Times Arts & Leisure, The New York Times Book Review, Newsday, New York Newsday, The Philadelphia Inquirer, Playbill, Travel & Leisure, Vogue, and The Washington Post Book World.

As a first reader at HarperCollins in the 1970s, he discovered Armistad Maupin’s Tales of the City and Joan Givner’s Katherine Anne Porter. He also co-edited Dorothy Hart’s Thou Swell, Thou Witty: The Life and Lyrics of Lorenz Hart (1976).

He was a consultant in film and theater to the editor of Radcliffe’s Schlessinger Library’s encyclopedia Notable American Women (Harvard University Press, 2004) and Research Consultant for The Manhattan Theatre Club’s Dorothy Fields revue, A Lady Needs A Change (1978).

Much praised as an interviewer, his subjects have included, among many others, William Styron, Helen Hayes, Kristen Chenoweth, Bette Davis, Bobby Short, Gore Vidal, Andrew Holleran, Joanne Woodward, A. Scott Berg, and Diana Vreeland.

At 20 and 21, he was, and remains, the youngest contributor ever to Film Comment and Film Quarterly. For the last several years, he has been working on a long book of an autobiographical nature.

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Some comments about Elliott Sirkin’s work:

“What a nifty writer you are...” — Mary Martin

“Many thanks for your splendid story. I shall always try to justify your wonderful words.” — Ethel Merman

“Your piece is delightfully put together, and I enjoyed it very much indeed.” — Diana Vreeland

“I just wanted to tell you that your piece was the most perceptive article that has been written about Miss Piggy and the other characters on The Muppet Show.” — Frank Oz

“Thank you for your review of Edie: An American Life. It is rare to read such a brilliant critque” — Jean Stein

“Thank you for that interview, which was very successful.” — Helen Hayes

“Your interview with me was smashing. One of the best I ever had...” — Bette Davis

“I would say you are generally quite right.” — Diana Trilling, writing to Elliott on reading one of Elliot’s many controversial book reviews.

There are other quotes like this, but Elliott doesn’t like to brag.

Selected Writing

A few of Elliott's favorites from his essays, interviews, and reviews:

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