The George Jean Nathan Award Committee has chosen Scott Brown as the recipient of the 2012-13 prize for the year’s best dramatic criticism.
The award committee comprises of the heads of the English departments of Cornell, Princeton and Yale universities and is administered by Cornell’s Department of English. According to the committee, Brown’s theater criticism is “distinguished for its wit, panoramic attentiveness and, most striking, empathy. Brown is a patient and probing reviewer, able to transcend the limits of his form.”
Brown was theater critic for New York Magazine from 2010-13. He has also been a columnist at Wired magazine and a senior writer for Entertainment Weekly. He co-authored the off-Broadway comedy “Gutenberg! The Musical!” and is working on TV and theater projects.
The Nathan Award was endowed by George Jean Nathan (1882-1958), a prominent theater critic who published 34 books on the theater and co-edited (with H.L. Mencken) two influential magazines, The Smart Set and The American Mercury. Nathan graduated from Cornell in 1904; as a student, he served as editor of The Cornell Daily Sun and the humor magazine The Cornell Widow.
Previous winners include Charles McNulty, Walter Kerr, Jack Kroll, Alisa Solomon, Charles Isherwood, Michael Feingold, Elinor Fuchs, Cornell professor H. Scott McMillin, and last year’s winners, Kenneth Gross and Jonathan Kalb. For more information about the Nathan Award, visit www.arts.cornell.edu/english/awards/nathan.
Linda B. Glaser is a staff writer for the College of Arts and Sciences.