Lauren Yee’s ‘Cambodian Rock Band’ Take Steinberg-ATCA Award

Also cited were Noah Haidle’s ‘Birthday Candles’ and Jen Silverman’s ‘Witch,’ with the Osborn Award going to Spenser Davis’s ‘Plainclothes.’

Cambodian Rock Band by Lauren Yee has been named the winner of the Harold and Mimi Steinberg/American Theatre Critics Association New Play Award. The award recognizes the best scripts that premiered professionally outside New York City during 2018 and carries a $25,000 prize. Yee was presented with the award during the 2019 Humana Festival of New American Plays at Actors Theatre of Louisville. Also presented at the ceremony on April 6 was the M. Elizabeth Osborn New Play Award for an emerging playwright, which went to Spenser Davis for his play Plainclothes, which premiered at Chicago’s Broken Nose Theatre.

“The notion of exploring the Cambodian holocaust through contemporary investigation, past survivor memories, and rock ’n’ roll is absolutely inspired, and to execute it with such unexpected humor and supple time shifts is a real accomplishment,” adjudicators on the ATCA New Play Committee said in a statement regarding Yee’s play. “This play felt at once fresh and deeply grounded in history.”

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