Stig and Sjöberg.

Dagerman was early drawn to the theater because it "…suited his temperament and his need for masks and disguises. He loved the dramatically poignant, the sudden changes of mood, bold emotions played to their fullest."

—From Olof Lagercrantz, Stig Dagerman biographer

The postwar period was a creative time in Swedish theater and film with legendary director Alf Sjöberg (Miss Julie, starring Anita Björk and Palme d'or in Cannes 1951) and Ingmar Bergman on the rise.

Newspaper clipping from Dagerman's premier as a director.

Sjöberg directed Dagerman's first play, The Man Condemned to Death, with great success. Dagerman completed four more plays, and even made his own directorial debut in The Game of Truth supported by his close actor/director friend, Bengt Ekerot (best known internationally for playing Death in Bergman's The Seventh Seal).

Dagerman divided his first major four plays into two groups:

Dramas of the Condemned: People who feel themselves condemned

Judas' Dramas: Plays about betrayal

Dagerman's fifth major play, created for radio, builds on his last novel Wedding Worries and is penned during a period of writer's block: