Honorary Degree Recipient
Doctor of Humane Letters
College of Liberal Arts, May 21, 2009
Tony Kushner, renowned artist, has contributed to the literary identification of marginalized voices through a prolific body of political art. He is the recipient of a Pulitzer, a Tony and an Emmy Award for his 1991/1992 two-part epic, Angels in America: A Gay Fantasia on National Themes, which provided sweeping accounts of the devastation of AIDS on the gay community. Most recently, he became the first recipient of the Steinberg Distinguished Playwright Award, which honors an American mid-career playwright whose body of work has already been recognized. He wrote the book and lyrics for the musical Caroline, or Change and has translated and adapted Pierre Corneill's The Illusion, S.Y. Ansky's The Dybbuk, Bertolt Brecht's The Good Person of Sezuan and Mother Courage and Her Children, and the English language libretto for the children's opera Brundibár by Hans Krasa. He wrote the screenplays for Mike Nichols' film Angels in America and Steven Spielberg's Munich. He is also the author of several books, including But the Giraffe, A Curtain rising, and Brundibar, to name a few. This spring, the Guthrie Theatre in conjunction with the University of Minnesota, will celebrate Kushner by presenting three of his plays simultaneously. This event is expected to draw strong national and international support.
Biographies are as-of time of award presentation.