Writer | Dramatist
Frank Strausser started out as an aspiring novelist but segued into theatre when the creative writing guru Robert McKee proclaimed that all writers should take an acting class. Two and half years after studying in the “Saturday Class” at the Beverly Hills Playhouse with the late Milton Katselias, a director and one of the top acting coaches in America, Strausser came away with a heightened grasp for what works dramatically, how to make scenes come alive, and how to develop more compelling characters.
A STORIED PAST
Academy Award best actress nominee and Golden Globe best actress winner Sally Kirkland starred in Strausser's critically acclaimed first play THE POWDER ROOM, which is about a reverse gender-bias incident in a so-called “safe space.” THE SPLIT, a play about a new architectural blueprint for divorced couples, he took to the Edinburgh Fringe Festival. Next, on the very stage in London’s West End that Sir Peter Hall premiered Beckett’s WAITING FOR GODOT, Strausser staged a five week developmental production of PSYCHO THERAPY, a play that Playbill would later describe as "a raucous romp around the couch." Not long after, PSYCHO THERAPY opened Off Broadway at the historic Cherry Lane Theatre and ran for three months. So popular was it with audiences that Goldstar awarded it Roar of the Crowd, meaning it was their highest member-rated show in New York.
With two novels and five full-length plays, Strausser has developed a considerable body of work. Most of his work is situationally fraught like the Kafkaesque paternity question consuming a couple in his novel HERE COMES THE SON. Urgent like the ticking fertility clocks in VALENTINE TRIAGE, which had a developmental production at the Blank Theatre Company in Los Angeles. And topical like his novel PLASTIC about a ripped from the tabloids Hollywood conspiracy to hide evidence of a crime after a celebrity assault.
Strausser has also produced a film, the late, legendary horror film director Tobe Hooper’s return to the genre, THE TOOLBOX MURDERS (Lion’s Gate). His many days spent on set, shadowing Tobe Hopper offered invaluable insight into bringing story to film.
Strausser has two films currently under development. PLASTIC, adapted from his novel, and PSYCHO THERAPY, adapted from his play.
Strausser started out at COSMOPOLITAN magazine, but soon went his own way. Up until he closed it in 2007, his custom publishing company, Strausser Productions, Inc., published hundreds of millions of magazine supplements that appeared at one time or another in just about every major consumer magazine. He also developed the largest 20th anniversary of Earth Day campaign, bringing McDonald’s and the World Wildlife Fund together in a landmark partnership to mobilize kids to make a difference. The project opened up a dialogue with the environmental community that led to McDonald’s discontinuing the use of polystyrene packaging.
He attended graduate school at Harvard University’s Radcliffe Publishing Procedures. As an undergrad, he studied English Literature at the University of California, Santa Barbara.
Select Praise for Frank Strausser
"A comic roadside attraction!" - The New York Times
"A raucous romp around the couch!" - Playbill
"Best bet!" - Los Angeles Times
"Revelations abound. We're not in Kansas anymore." - Hollywood Reporter
"A Must see!!! You're in for a real treat." - Broadway World
"Ferociously focused performance by Sally Kirkland!" - Variety
"Wonderfully witty, intelligent, well thought out script." - BBC Psychologist Donna Dawson
“There’s no doubt Strausser has a sense for character development, dramatic action, and structure.” - Backstage West
“Think Hepburn and Tracy, scripted by Alan Ayckbourn!” - The Scotsman