Authors on Stage with Jay Tunney

Category: Authors on Stage
Location: Adrian Lamb Room

Gene Tunney, the world heavyweight-boxing champion from 1926 to 1928, seemed an unusual companion for George Bernard Shaw, but Shaw, a world-famous playwright, found the Irish-American athlete to be "among the very few for whom I have established a warm affection."

The Prizefighter and the Playwright chronicles the legendary relationship that formed between this celebrated odd couple. From the beginning, it seemed a strange relationship, as Tunney was 40 years younger and the men could not have occupied more different worlds. Yet it is clear that these two famous men, comfortable on the world stage, longed for friendship when they were out of the celebrity spotlight.

Author Jay R. Tunney is the son of the famous fighter, and his book is a beautifully woven and often surprising biography of the two men. The book evolved from the acclaimed BBC radio program The Master and the Boy.