Arts Critic John Simon to Appear in Literary Society Lecture

Teaneck, NJ (March 8, 2006) — John Simon, the New York cultural critic and theater critic of New York magazine for 36 years, will appear at Fairleigh Dickinson University to discuss “On Becoming a Critic” in a Gene Barnett Literary Society Lecture on Monday, March 27.

A celebrated theater, film and music critic, he has long been noted for his acid tongue and stinging style, earning the title “Count Dracula of Shubert Alley.” Simon’s intelligent and eloquent reviews were often provocative. He is the recipient of numerous awards and prizes, including the George Polk Award in film criticism, the George Jean Nathan Award for drama criticism and an award from the American Academy of Arts and Letters.

In a major publishing event in 2005, Applause Books published three volumes of Simon’s collected works—on theater, music and film. This collection spans 30 years and includes his work from New York magazine as well as the Hudson Review, Opera News, the New Leader and National Review.

The publication of “John Simon on Theater,” “John Simon on Music,” and “John Simon on Film,” coincided with his departure from New York magazine. In the introduction to “John Simon on Theater” the director Jack O’Brien writes that Simon was always “outstripping everyone else in both knowledge, history, reference, and that one element without which any critic can be dismissed as merely a ‘reviewer’: he had standards.”

John Simon was born in Serbia and educated at Harvard, earning his bachelor’s, masters and doctoral degrees at that institution. He studied as a Fulbright Fellow in Paris.

The lecture, in Fairleigh Dickinson’s Wilson Auditorium, Dickinson Hall, begins at 8 p.m. and includes a question-and-answer period with the audience. Books will be available for sale and signing. General admission is $10 and there is no advance ticket sale. The doors will open at 7:15 p.m. Groups of 10 or more should call in advance for special seating. Dickinson Hall is the on Hackensack side of the Metropolitan Campus, close to Route 4, off Hackensack Avenue South. For further information, call 201 692 7028.

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Gretchen Johnson

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Fairleigh Dickinson University
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