Thesp receives top Mark

Martin given American Humor prize on Oct. 23

WASHINGTON — Steve Martin will receive this year’s Mark Twain Prize for American Humor from the John F. Kennedy Center. The multifaceted funnyman will be honored Oct. 23 at the center’s Concert Hall, with the occasion likely to be broadcast on PBS.

Upon learning of the award, Martin said, “I think Mark Twain is a great guy and I can’t wait to meet him.”

He joins Richard Pryor, Jonathan Winters, Carl Reiner, Whoopi Goldberg, Bob Newhart, Lily Tomlin and Lorne Michaels as a recipient of the annual Kennedy Center award.

Center chairman Stephen A. Schwarzman praised the versatility of the actor, author, playwright and standup comic. Among the films he has written and toplined in are “Dead Men Don’t Wear Plaid,” “The Man With Two Brains,” “Roxanne,” “L.A. Story” and “Bowfinger.”

He has had two plays produced Off Broadway, “Picasso at the Lapin Agile” and “The Underpants.” He has published two novellas, “Shopgirl” and “The Pleasure of My Company,” as well as a collection of comic pieces, “Pure Drivel.” His work frequently appears in the New Yorker and the New York Times.

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