Carlin to Receive Kennedy Center's Mark Twain Prize for American Humor

News   Carlin to Receive Kennedy Center's Mark Twain Prize for American Humor The Kennedy Center for the Performing Arts will posthumously award the eleventh annual Mark Twain Prize for American Humor to the late George Carlin.
George Carlin
George Carlin

Carlin, one of America's foremost humorists, died June 22. The Grammy-winning stand-up comedian, actor and author will be recognized during a Nov. 10 ceremony in the Kennedy Center's Concert Hall. A host of artists to be announced at a later date will recognize the life and achievements of the late comedian.

The 8 PM evening will be taped by WETA Washington, DC. The program, entitled "George Carlin: The Kennedy Center Mark Twain Prize," will air on PBS stations nationwide at a later date.

The Mark Twain Prize, according to press notes, recognizes "people who have had an impact on American society in ways similar to the distinguished 19th century novelist and essayist best known as Mark Twain. As a social commentator, satirist and creator of characters, Samuel Clemens was a fearless observer of society, who startled many while delighting and informing many more with his uncompromising perspective of social injustice and personal folly. He revealed the great truth of humor when he said 'against the assault of laughter nothing can stand.'"

Carlin follows previous recipients Billy Crystal, Steve Martin, Richard Pryor, Jonathan Winters, Carl Reiner, Whoopi Goldberg, Bob Newhart, Lily Tomlin, Lorne Michaels and Neil Simon.

During his lengthy career, Mr. Carlin released 22 solo albums and three New York Times best-selling books. The five-time Emmy-nominated actor starred in 14 HBO specials and numerous television and film productions. He was the first host of "Saturday Night Live" and appeared on "The Tonight Show" more than 130 times.

Tickets for the Kennedy Center salute to Carlin will go on sale Aug. 11. For information about the dinner and post-performance reception, call (202) 416-8333 or e-mail marktwainprize@kennedy-center.org.

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