Branden Jacobs-Jenkins, Radha Blank and Lisa Kron Among Helen Merrill Award Winners | Playbill

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News Branden Jacobs-Jenkins, Radha Blank and Lisa Kron Among Helen Merrill Award Winners Playwrights Branden Jacobs-Jenkins, Dorothy Fortenberry, Dan LeFranc, Radha Blank and Lisa Kron are the recipients of the 2011 Helen Merrill Awards in Playwrighting.

Branden Jacobs-Jenkins
Branden Jacobs-Jenkins

Named in honor of late theatrical agent and photographer Merrill, each playwright receives $20,000 as part of the award, which continues Merrill's legacy in nurturing new voices in theatre. The awards were presented Sept. 26 at the Algonquin Hotel.

Jacobs-Jenkins (Neighbors, The Octoroon), Fortenberry (Good Egg), LeFranc (The Big Meal) and Blank (Seed) were acknowledged in the Emerging Playwright Award category, while Kron (Well, In the Wake, Fun Home) was recognized as the recipient of the Distinguished Playwright Award.

The selection committee included Obie Award-winning playwright Christopher Durang, Tony-winning costume designer Susan Hilferty, New Dramatists' director of artistic development Emily Morse, and Tony and Olivier-winning playwright Richard Nelson.

Previous winners include David Adjmi, David Auburn, Brooke Berman, Kara Lee Corthron, Nilo Cruz, Angela Eisa Davis, Bathsheba Doran, Will Eno, Marcus Gardley, Gina Gionfriddo, Noah Haidle, Amy Herzog, Albert Innaurato, Tina Howe, Deborah Margolin, David Rabe, Adam Rapp, Sarah Ruhl, Wallace Shawn, Theodora Skipitares, Michael Weller, Samuel Brett Williams and Lanford Wilson.

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