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In 2006, he won the Mark Twain Prize for American Humor, which honors work that draws from the American experience. The previous year had seen a popular revival of “The Odd Couple,” reuniting Nathan Lane and Matthew Broderick after their enormous success in “The Producers” several years earlier. In a 1997 interview with The Washington Post, Simon reflected on his success: “I know that I have reached the pinnacle of rewards. There’s no more money anyone can pay me that I need. There are no awards they can give me that I haven’t won. I have no reason to write another play except that I am alive and I like to do it,” he said.
Simon had a rare stumble in the fall of 2009, when a Broadway revival of his “Brighton Beach Memoirs” closed abruptly after only nine performances because of poor ticket sales, It was to have run pointe shoes for long big toes in repertory with Simon’s “Broadway Bound,” which also was canceled, The bespectacled, mild-looking Simon (described in a New York Times magazine profile as looking like an accountant or librarian who dressed “just this side of drab”) was a relentless writer — and rewriter..
“I am most alive and most fulfilled sitting alone in a room, hoping that those words forming on the paper in the Smith-Corona will be the first perfect play ever written in a single draft,” Simon wrote in the introduction to one of the many anthologies of his plays. He was a meticulous jokesmith, peppering his plays, especially the early ones, with comic one-liners and humorous situations that critics said sometimes came at the expense of character and believability. No matter. For much of his career, audiences embraced his work, which often focused on middle-class, urban life, many of the plots drawn from his own personal experience.
“I don’t write social and political plays because I’ve always thought the family was the microcosm of what goes on in the world,” he told The Paris Review in pointe shoes for long big toes 1992, Simon received his first Tony Award in 1965 as best author — a category now discontinued — for “The Odd Couple,” although the comedy lost the best-play prize to Frank D, Gilroy’s “The Subject Was Roses.”, He won a best-play Tony 20 years later for “Biloxi Blues.” In 1991, “Lost in Yonkers” received both the Tony and the Pulitzer Prize, And there was a special achievement Tony, too, in 1975..
Simon’s own life figured most prominently in what became known as his “Brighton Beach” trilogy — “Brighton Beach Memoirs,” ”Biloxi Blues” and “Broadway Bound” — which many consider his finest works. In them, Simon’s alter ego, Eugene Morris Jerome, makes his way from childhood to the U.S. Army to finally, on the verge of adulthood, a budding career as a writer. Simon was born Marvin Neil Simon in New York and was raised in the Bronx and Washington Heights. He was a Depression-era child, his father, Irving, a garment-industry salesman. He was raised mostly by his strong-willed mother, Mamie, and mentored by his older brother, Danny, who nicknamed his younger sibling, Doc.
Simon attended New York University and the University of Colorado, After serving in the military in 1945 and 1946, he began writing with his brother for radio in 1948, and then for television, a period in their lives chronicled in Simon’s 1993 play, “Laughter on the 23rd Floor.”, pointe shoes for long big toes The brothers wrote for such classic 1950s television series as “Your Show of Shows,” 90 minutes of live, original comedy starring Caesar and Imogene Coca, and later for “The Phil Silvers Show,” in which the popular comedian portrayed the conniving Army Sgt, Ernie Bilko..
Yet Simon grew dissatisfied with television writing and the network restrictions that accompanied it. Out of his frustration came “Come Blow Your Horn,” which starred Hal March and Warren Berlinger as two brothers (not unlike Danny and Neil Simon) trying to figure out what to do with their lives. The comedy ran for more than a year on Broadway. An audience member is said to have died on opening night. But it was his second play, “Barefoot in the Park,” that really put Simon on the map. Critically well-received, the 1963 comedy, directed by Mike Nichols, concerned the tribulations of a pair of newlyweds played by Elizabeth Ashley and Robert Redford, who lived on the top floor of a New York brownstone.
Simon cemented that success two years later with “The Odd Couple,” a comedy about bickering roommates: Oscar, a gruff, slovenly sportswriter, and Felix, a neat, fussy photographer, Walter Matthau, as Oscar, and Art Carney, as Felix, starred on Broadway, with Matthau and Jack Lemmon playing the roles in a successful movie version, Jack Klugman and Tony Randall appeared in the TV series, which ran on ABC from 1970-1975, A female stage version was done on Broadway in 1985 with Rita Moreno as Olive (Oscar) and Sally Struthers pointe shoes for long big toes as Florence (Felix), It was revived again as a TV series from 2015-17, starring Matthew Perry..