Ayad Akhtar and Lucas Hnath, two highly decorated playwrights, can each add another feather to their caps: They have been named winners of the 2017 Steinberg Playwright Awards, given to rising American playwrights. The award comes with $50,000.
Mr. Hnath’s “A Doll’s House, Part 2” received eight Tony nominations. The play imagines the lives of the Helmer family 15 years after the events in Ibsen’s 1879 classic. In his review for The Times, Ben Brantley called the play “smart, funny and utterly engrossing.” Mr. Hnath also wrote “The Christians” and “Red Speedo”; both were Times Critic’s Picks.
Mr. Hnath has a history with the Steinberg Charitable Trust: He has won two Steinberg/ATCA New Play Award Citations, each worth $7,500. “Their support has meant a great deal to me over the course of my career,” Mr. Hnath said in a statement.
In plays such as “The Invisible Hand” and “Disgraced” — which won the 2013 Pulitzer Prize for Drama — Mr. Akhtar explores faith and politics in the U.S. and abroad. His newest play, “Junk,” depicts the high-risk financial world of the 1980s and begins previews at Lincoln Center Theater on Oct. 5.
“I am so honored to share the company of the amazing artists who’ve won this award,” Mr. Akhtar said in a statement. Previous recipients include Branden Jacobs-Jenkins and Annie Baker.
This year’s winners will be celebrated at the “Mimi” Awards at Lincoln Center Theater on Dec. 4.
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