The Story played the Public Theater last season, in a production which starred Phylicia Rashad. Scott will receive a cash prize of $15,000—an increase over the former amount of $10,000. Wilson will also get a staged reading of a new work immediately following the presentation of the award, set for Nov. 21 at the National Arts Club.
John Belluso earned an honorable mention for his play A Nervous Smile. He receives $5,000—a jump of $2,500 over previous years.
Theatres from across the country were invited to nominate playwrights "who show exceptional promise, but have not yet received prominent national attention." Thirteen theatres participated in this year's process, and winners were chosen by three judges: playwright John Guare; playwright and performer Eric Bogosian and Lincoln Center dramaturg Anne Cattaneo. Wilson was nominated by the Public Theater. New Dramatists nominated Belluso.
The Kesselring Prize is named in honor of Joseph Kesselring, who penned Arsenic and Old Lace. Previous winners of the award include David Auburn, Tony Kushner, Nicky Silver, Anna Deavere Smith and David Lindsay Abaire.