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Drama Canadian

The Collected Stage Drama of Marie-Claire Blais

by (author) Marie-Claire Blais

translated by Nigel Spencer

Cormorant Books
Initial publish date
Mar 2009
  • Paperback / softback

    Publish Date
    Mar 2009
    List Price

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Best known as the most important voice in Quobcois fiction of the last fifty years, Marie-Claire Blais is also an accomplished playwright. Her works have been performed in French on Radio-Canada, and on the stages of Montreal and Quebec City. In her stage plays, as with her radio plays and her fiction, Marie-Claire Blais works from a post-religious world view, but with the structures of religion in place; in short, she is a contemporary Dante, writing about good and evil in a civil context. Her characters, however, are more than just symbols; they are real people, struggling with moral dilemmas. In the novel, A Season in the Life of Emmanuel, Blais wrote from the point of view of a child under a table; the point of view itself was a metaphor for the society in which she found herself in the late 1950s and early 1960s, just prior to Quebec_s Quiet Revolution. The plays included in this edition are evidence of Blais_ great talent when brought to bear on the theatre, especially in the plays The Execution, Desire, and Envy.

About the authors

MARIE-CLAIRE BLAIS is the internationally revered author of more than twenty-five books, many of which have been published around the world. In addition to the Governor General's Literary Award for Fiction, which she has won four times, Blais has been awarded the Gilles-Corbeil Prize, the Médicis Prize, the Molson Prize, and Guggenheim Fellowships. She divides her time between Key West, Florida, and Quebec.

Marie-Claire Blais' profile page

Nigel Spencer's work includes acting, directing, teaching, educational research and training, journalism, subtitling and co-scripting films, as well as script-doctoring.

He taught the first bilingual graduate course on Comparative Canadian Dramaturgy (l'Université de Sherbrooke), and a performance-based course on Shakespeare at the State University of New York (Plattsburgh).

He has published six books of translated work by Marie-Claire Blais, including Thunder and Light, Augustino and the Choir of Destruction, and Mai at the Predators' Ball, which earned him three Governor General's Literary Awards for Translation.

His theatre translations include three plays by Evelyne de la Chenelière, one of which, September, will be produced by Canadian Stage in Toronto in 2020.

Nigel Spencer's profile page

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