Four playwrights are among this year's 10 winners of the Whiting Writers' Awards, which honors writers in various fields. The playwrights are Danai Gurira and Meg Miroshnik, both of whom reside in Los Angeles, and Samuel D. Hunter and Mona Mansour, who reside in New York.
Each recipient receives $50,000. The awards, handed out since 1985, are organized by the Whiting Foundation and are intended to recognize writers who have yet to achieve prominence in their fields.
This year's winners includes poets Ciaran Berry and Atsuro Riley; fiction writers Alan Heathcock, Hanna Pylväinen and Anthony Marra; and nonfiction writer Sharifa Rhodes-Pitts.
Past playwright recipients include Tony Kushner, David Adjmi, Rajiv Joseph, Bruce Norris and Suzan-Lori Parks.
Gurira's play "The Convert" ran at the Kirk Douglas Theatre this year, while her drama "Eclipsed" ran on the same stage in 2009. Gurira is also an actress and has appeared in the hit AMC series "The Walking Dead" and the HBO series "Treme."
Miroshnik has been produced at Atlanta's Alliance Theatre and at the Pacific Playwrights Festival at South Coast Repertory in Costa Mesa.
Hunter's "A Bright New Boise" is being performed by L.A.'s Rogue Machine Theatre. His new play "The Whale," about a morbidly obsese man, recently opened at Playwrights Horizons in New York. It will be presented at South Coast Repertory in March.