jakub | March 30, 2023

AMERICAN THEATRE | Mia Chung, Emma Wippermann Win 2023 Whiting Awards for Drama


Emma Wippermann, Mia Chung.

NEW YORK CITY: The Whiting Foundation has named the 10 winners of the 2023 Whiting Awards, including Mia Chung for drama and Emma Wippermann for poetry and drama. Recipients each receive a $50,000 monetary award.

“Every year we look to the new Whiting Award winners, writing fearlessly at the edge of imagination, to reveal the pathways of our thought and our acts before we know them ourselves,” Courtney Hodell, director of literary programs at the Whiting Foundation, said in a statement. “The prize is meant to create a space of ease in which such transforming work can be made.”

The Whiting Awards were presented at ceremony earlier tonight with a keynote by Pulitzer-winning playwright Ayad Akhtar. Winners will also present at a reading on March 30 at the Center for Fiction in Brooklyn.

Chung’s play Catch as Catch Can was recently produced at Playwrights Horizons. Her work has been produced by Page 73, the Public Theater, the National Asian American Theatre Company, and the Woolly Mammoth Theatre Company, as well as the Royal Court Theatre in the U.K. and the National Theatre Center of Korea. Her plays have been published by Bloomsbury Methuen Drama and Theatre Communications Group. Chung is an alum of the Ma-Yi Writers Lab and New Dramatists, and has received multiple awards, commissions, and residencies. She holds degrees from Yale University, Brown University, and Trinity College Dublin.

Wippermann is a New York-based writer whose work Pleasure as a Series of Objects was published by Patient Sounds in 2019. Her drama Joan of Arkansas, which follows a teenager tasked by God to ensure that an Arkansas Republican presidential candidate adopts radical climate policies, is forthcoming from Ugly Duckling Presse. Wippermann’s work has also appeared in the Quietus, Temporary Art Review, and the SAND Journal, among others.

Other Whiting Award recipients for 2023 include Tommye Blount and Ama Codjoe for poetry; Marcia Douglas, Sidik Fofana, and Carribean Fragoza for fiction, as well as R. Kikuo Johnson for graphic fiction; and Linda Kinstler and Stephania Taladrid for nonfiction.

The Whiting Awards recognize early-career achievements and empower recipients to fulfill the promise of exceptional literary works to come. They have awarded $9.5 million in awards since 1985. All award nominators and judges are invited by the Whiting Foundation, which provides targeted support for writers and scholars, and work anonymously.

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