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Martin Sherman (born December 22, 1938) is an American dramatist and screenwriter best known for his stage plays which have been produced in over 55 countries. He rose to fame in 1979 with the production of his Pulitzer Prize-nominated play Bent, which explores the persecution of homosexuals during the Holocaust. Sherman is an openly gay Jew and has lived and worked in London since 1980. Sherman was an only child, born in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania to Russian immigrants Joseph T. Sherman, an attorney, Julia Sherman (née Shapiro). Growing up in Camden, New Jersey, he was first introduced to the theater came at age six when he saw pre-Broadway version of Guys and Dolls (1950) starring Alfred Lunt and Lynn Fontanne. Sheridan's parents encouraged his passion. In an interview with London Times writer Sheridan Morley in 1983, Sherman recalled, "At 12 I joined the Mae Desmond Children's Players and went all around Pennsylvania being a tall dwarf in Snow White and the Seven Dwarfs." As a young teen, Sherman despised school, but consoled himself by often taking the bus into Philadelphia to see plays.