The show was originally produced on August 12, 2007 by the Steppenwolf Theatre Company at the Downstairs Theatre in Chicago. The Broadway production began previews on October 30, 2007, at the Imperial Theatre only days before the 2007 Broadway stagehand strike on November 10 which temporarily closed most shows on Broadway. The strike continued through the official opening date of November 20, forcing the show to reschedule its December 4 opening. The Broadway show closed on June 28, 2009, after 648 performances and 18 previews. The Broadway debut used much of cast from Steppenwolf in Chicago, and opened to receive wide acclaim. The production, originally slated to close on February 17, 2008, was extended for three weeks to March 9 after the strike, and later extended to April 13, 2008, when it was subsequently given an open-ended commercial run.
Both the Steppenwolf and Broadway productions were directed by Anna D. Shapiro, featuring scenic design by Todd Rosenthal, costume design by Ana Kuzmanic, lighting design by Ann G. Wrightson, sound design by Richard Woodbury, original music by David Singer, dramaturgy by Edward Sobel, dialect coaching by Cecille O'Reilly, and fight choreography by Charles Coyl. Both productions were stage managed by Deb Styer, with Jane Grey joining the New York company. August: Osage County made its UK debut at London's National Theatre in November 2008. Additionally, a US National Tour was launched at Denver's Ellie Caulkins Opera House on July 24, 2009 with Estelle Parsons portraying the role as Violet. This production went on to tour throughout the country. The play made its Israeli debut at Habima Theatre in Tel Aviv in January 2009 starring Gila Almagor. The play made its Puerto Rican debut at the Rene Marquez Theater Hall of the Luis A. Ferre Performing Arts Center in San Juan in March 2009 starring Gladys Rodríguez.
It also was presented in Australia, at the Arts Centre Playhouse, Melbourne, produced by the Melbourne Theatre Company, and starring Robyn Nevin, from 23 May to June 27, 2009. The New Theatre (Newtown) production directed by Louise Fischer, with Alice Livingston as Violet opened on 8 June 2018. The large cast engaged the audience for 3 hours and 10 minutes with 2 intervals. The tri-level house was successfully created with staircases mezaninnes by Ester Roseberg, Tom Bannerman and Rodger Wishart. Emilia Stubbs Grigoriou was Johnna who has reverted to her Cheyenne name and is given a few seconds of attention to explain the significance of the Turtle Pouch she wears around her neck.
The play had its German premiere in Mannheim at the Nationaltheater (October 31, 2008) under the title "Eine Familie" (German for "A family"), directed by Burkhard C. Kosminski. The Austrian premiere in Vienna, in the Akademietheater from October 31, 2009, onwards was staged by the Latvian director Alvis Hermanis and featured Kirsten Dene in the role of Violet Weston. The play has been translated into Spanish and premiered in Buenos Aires, Argentina at the Teatro Lola Membrives, starring Norma Aleandro and Mercedes Morán. It ran there for more than a year, with frequent sold-out houses. The play made its Swedish debut at Göteborg City Theatre. Opening Night on January 29, 2010, starring Ann Petrén, and its Danish at the Betty Nansen Theatre in Copenhagen. It was due to premiere in Montevideo by mid-2010, at the Teatro El Galpón. August premiered on April 29, 2010 in Lima, at the Teatro La Plaza – Isil, starring Claudia Dammert. The Catalan play premiered on November 25, 2010 in the Catalan National Theatre (Teatre Nacional de Catalunya, Barcelona) with great success. It was renewed for another season during 2012. The cast included Anna Lizaran as Violet and Emma Vilarasau as Barbara. The Steppenwolf Theatre Company opened a production in Sydney in conjunction with the Sydney Theatre Company in August 2010.
The amateur debut of the play was made by Hingham High School in Hingham, Massachusetts, on May 4, 2012, and was followed by a production at the Hawken School Hawken Players Society production, on November 7–10, 2013. The New Zealand premiere of the play was presented by Auckland Theatre Company in September 2010, starring Jennifer Ward-Lealand, Stuart Devenie and Nancy Brunning and directed by Colin McColl. The Wellington production opened at Circa Theatre on April 1, 2011, with Jennifer Ludlam reprising the role of Violet. In April 2014, the play premiered in Romania, at the Iași National Theatre. The play had its national regional premiere on September 9, 2010, in Albuquerque, NM with Fusion Theatre Company. According to the company's website, the run for this production was completely sold out. The cast included professional and Tony-nominated actors such as Laurie Thomas and Joanne Camp, and was directed by Gil Lazier. Review: http://www.talkinbroadway.com/regional/alb/alb15.html The play had its university premiere on September 23, 2010, in a unique co-production undertaken by Wright State University's Department of Theatre, Dance and Motion Pictures and The Human Race Theatre Company of Dayton, Ohio. The production was the first co-production of its kind for this play, combining seven professional actors with six students (EMC candidates) in WSU's BFA Acting program, and played to over four thousand during its three-week run in the Robert and Elaine Stein Auditorium on the Wright State campus.
This production featured Susanne Marley as Violet Weston, the role she had played in the Broadway production, and Rainbow Dickerson, also from the Broadway production, as well as six students from the WSU undergraduate theatre program. The play has its Dutch premiere on May 1, 2011 at the Stadsschouwburg Utrecht (Utrecht City Theatre) by theatre company De Utrechtse Spelen. It will be directed by Antoine Uitdehaag and stars Tjitske Reidinga, Peter Blok, Ria Eimers and Tom de Ket. The Dutch title is Augustus: Oklahoma. It made its Florida premiere at Florida Repertory Theatre Company in Fort Myers in March 2011. On April 20, 2011, the show open at the Oregon Shakespeare Festival. The play had its North Carolina regional premiere on August 25, 2011 at the Carolina Actors Studio Theatre in Charlotte. It was chosen for the 2011 Graduation Production of the Department of Foreign Languages and Literatures, National Taiwan University, premiering on May 11. August: Osage County had its first college premiere at Western Illinois University on April 20, 2011. Due to a serious fall during its final week of rehearsal, the director had to step in for the lead and perform the role of Violet Weston.
The Spanish version (Agosto (condado de Osage)) of the play opened on December 7, 2011, in Madrid, with an all-star-cast including Amparo Baró as Violet, Carmen Machi as Barbara, Alicia Borrachero as Ivy, Clara Sanchis as Karen, Sonsoles Benedicto as Mattie-Fae and Irene Escolar as Jean among many others, directed by Gerardo Vera. The show closed on February 22, 2012, after a huge success.
In India, veteran theatre actor and director Lillete Dubey has directed a slightly adapted version of the play and has been touring with it in several Indian cities such as Delhi, Mumbai and Bangalore. In the Indian version, while the name of the play and those of most characters remain the same, the narrative has been shifted to the Indian state of Goa. Many well-known Indian theatre and film actors have major roles in the play, with Dubey herself playing the role of Violet with Sandhya Mridul as Barbara, Kitu Gidwani as Mattie, Mita Vashisht as Karen and Suchitra Pillai as Ivy.
The Polish adaptation of the play, titled "Sierpień" (meaning "August"), had its premiere in Teatr Studio in Warsaw on February 2, 2012. Imperium Theater in Leiden, The Netherlands, was the first amateur theater company outside the United States to perform the play, on May 12, 2012. The PACE (Performing Arts Curriculum Experience) program at Mamaroneck High School opened their 2013 season with August: Osage County on October 23rd, 2013. The Fox Network's cartoon comedy series American Dad did an over the top, metaphor-festooned satirical send up of the play's style as well as Clifford Odets' Paradise Lost, called “Blood Crieth Unto Heaven.” The UMass Theatre Guild of University of Massachusetts Amherst premiered an entirely student-run production of August: Osage County on April 9, 2015.