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Photo of Erin Shields by Dahlia Katz.


Erin Shields is a Canadian playwright best known for radical adaptations of classical texts which bring neglected female characters centre stage. Her additional text for Shakespeare’s Much Ado About Nothing at The Stratford Festival gives a voice to silenced Hero at the climax of the play. Queen Goneril, which premiered at Soulpepper Theatre in rep with King Lear, centres Lear’s stifled daughters as they contend for power in a world that insists they remain powerless. Erin’s illuminating and hilarious adaptation of Paradise Lost (Stratford Festival), won the Quebec Writers Federation Prize for Playwriting. And her harrowing tragedy about sexual violence, If We Were Birds, won the Governor General’s Award for playwriting.

Other plays include: Jane Eyre (Citadel Theatre), Piaf/Dietrich (Mirvish Productions/Segal Centre), Beautiful Man (Factory Theatre), The Lady from the Sea (The Shaw Festival), The Millennial Malcontent and Soliciting Temptation (Tarragon Theatre) and Instant (Geordie Theatre). 

Erin’s plays are published by Playwrights Canada Press and you can read more about upcoming projects on her website –

Published Work

Queen Goneril – Playwrights Canada Press

Beau Gars (translation of Beautiful Man by Olivier Sylvestre) – Hamac

The Millennial Malcontent in Voices of a Generation – Playwrights Canada Press

Beautiful Man and Other Short Plays – Playwrights Canada Press

Paradise Lost – Playwrights Canada Press

Instant and Mistatim – Playwrights Canada Press

Soliciting Temptation – Playwrights Canada Press

If We Were Birds – Playwrights Canada Press


  • Dora Award Finalist for Outstanding New Text, Queen Goneril (2023)
  • Quebec Writing Federation Prize for Playwriting, The Millennial Malcontent (2022)
  • Dora Award for Outstanding Musical Production, Piaf/Dietrich (2020)
  • Quebec Writing Federation Prize for Playwriting, Paradise Lost (2018)
  • Governor General’s Award Finalist, Paradise Lost (2019)
  • Carol Bolt Award Finalist, Beautiful Man (2019)
  • Dora Award for Outstanding TYA Production, Instant (2018)
  • Montreal English Theatre Award for Outstanding New Text, Instant (2017)
  • Governor General’s Award for Playwriting, If We Were Birds (2011)

Connect with Me


Shields is a gifted writer

Toronto Star

Shields knows how to use language to stir the imagination

Hamilton Spectator

Every new play from her is a challenge, and a treat.

Toronto Star

The writing is both poetic and muscular, the images are vivid, breathtaking and heart-squeezing … pulsing with life and emotions.