Writers: John Osborne


Show Information

Number of Acts
Tony Award®
Best Play 1964
First Produced
Drama, Historical/Biographical
Period, Multiple Settings
Time & Place
Germany, 1500s
Cast Size
Ideal for
College/University, Community Theatre, Mostly Male Cast, Professional Theatre, Regional Theatre, Star Vehicle Male
Casting Notes
Mostly male cast
Includes adult, mature adult, young adult, elderly characters


Luther is John Osborne’s psychological study of Martin Luther and his journey of faith. Martin Luther, a monk who began the Protestant Reformation from the Catholic Church, struggles with self-loathing, a strained relationship with his father, and constant illness caused by anxiety over his sins. As Martin’s sermons become more heated, Martin begins to challenge the political hierarchy within the Church. Pushed to his limit by the selling of indulgences (letters which grant the owner full or partial absolution from their sins), Martin nails 95 theses to the Church door and challenges any theologian who is willing to a debate. Refusing to retract his statements and denouncing the Pope in a sermon, Luther is banished from Germany and excommunicated from his Order. However, his outspoken nature sparks a rebellion which will not be silenced by the Church. Luther won the Tony Award for Best Play in 1964, after transferring from a successful run in the West End.

Lead Characters

Luther guide sections