Playwright Edward Albee is recovering after undergoing open-heart surgery this summer (12).

The Who's Afraid of Virginia Woolf? author was advised by doctors earlier this year (12) to add his name to a waiting list for a new organ due to his declining health, and in June (12) he was offered a second chance at life.

But the 84-year-old Tony winner admits he was skeptical of the procedure at first.

He tells New York Magazine, "I knew my body was getting weaker and I knew I was going to have to have something done. And they finally said to me, 'Edward, you need open-heart surgery.' When they rip your chest open and do all sorts of silly stuff to it.

"And my reaction to that was, 'What will happen if I don't?' 'You'll probably die in a year.' 'Oh, then I guess there's no choice.'"