Molière Master Class

Various Authors

Note

This bundle consisting of seven books is sold at 20% off the regular price for its individual titles.

$82.15

Acting Edition — Don Juan by Molière, translated and adapted by Richard Nelson

With a calloused and lustful heart, Don Juan indulges his sexual appetites with boundless enthusiasm. Heedless of warnings both earthly and otherwise, history's most notorious romantic devil rushes headlong toward retribution in Molière's sparkling comedy.

Acting Edition — The Imaginary Invalid by Molière, translated by Richard Nelson, Richard Pevear and Larissa Volokhonsky

Molière’s classic comic masterpiece is here brilliantly translated by renowned translators Richard Pevear and Larissa Volokhonksy (two-time winner of the PEN/Book-of-the-Month-Club Translation Prize) and playwright/director Richard Nelson (Tony Award, Oliver Award).

Book — The Misanthrope by Molière, adapted by Constance Congdon

In this delightful comedy about the French aristocracy, told with Molière’s signature wit, the atmosphere is frivolous, the morals are loose, the egos are larger than life and everyone is looking for love. Constance Congdon’s adaptation of this intelligent satire is both provocative and funny.

Book — The Miser by Molière, adapted by Virginia Scott

Harpagon thinks that his children are costing him too much money and must be married off. He has found an old man who won’t demand a dowry for his daughter, Elise, and a rich widow for his son, Cleante. Unfortunately Elise is already in love with Harpagon’s servant, and his son is in love with the penniless Mariane, whom Harpagon has already decided to take as his own wife.

Book — The Pests by Molière, translated and slightly abridged and adapted by Felicia Londré

Molière’s deliciously trifling comedy in a garden setting won the favor of the Sun King in 1661 and set his course to become the most-produced comic writer in the history of theatre. This neglected classic marked Molière’s first mingling of sparkling verse dialogue and dance numbers.

Book — Scapino the Trickster by Molière, translated and adapted by Matt DiCintio

When two misers return from abroad, their sons find their romances with two mysterious women in peril. They enlist the services of a wily servant to swindle, hoodwink, and bamboozle their way to a happy ending. Molière's most famous farce marries his signature wit and verve with the traditions of commedia dell'arte.

Book — Tartuffe by Molière, adapted by Constance Congdon from a literal prose translation by Virginia Scott

Constance Congdon's witty verse adaptation of Molière's timeless classic, in which a religious conman infiltrates the household of a gullible man and his exasperated family, has lent itself to productions set in modern-day Texas, New Orleans, and even The Sopranos' New Jersey.

Description

Even better than brie and champagne is the inimitable Jean-Baptiste Poquelin de Molière, France’s greatest export.

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Reviews

Press Quotes

DON JUAN

“Richard Nelson’s supple translation accommodates this transposition comfortably, without infidelity to the original.” —Julius Novick, The Village Voice

“Richard Nelson’s translation … seems an improvement on previous drab, very English, English versions.” —James Lardner, Washington Post

THE MISANTHROPE

“Love is all bad sonnets, big fluffy beds and silly preening in the first half of THE MISANTHROPE … Then the gloves come off … and the characters are fighting for their lives. Molière’s 1666 comedy about yearning for truth and love in a world of self-serving hypocrites never falls out of fashion … The play is recast here in a tonic new verse version by Constance Congdon … This is a world … where words do all the damage. Playwright Congdon (TALES OF THE LOST FORMICANS) has done an exemplary job of making that language count. Her rhymes are not as elegant as those in Richard Wilbur’s standard verse translation, and that’s the point. There’s a lean angularity in her lines, a flashing sense of purpose.” —Steven Winn, San Francisco Chronicle

THE PESTS

“Flashy, effervescent and downright fun … It is such a joy to watch the ensemble bring tradition into the now. PESTS obviously has literary accessibility and near-perfect timing, but it also has guts, and in rhyming verse.” —Lonita Cook, Black Bee Buzz

“Londré’s translation highlights the show’s whimsy and the cast does an impressive job of handling Molière’s rhyming couplets.” —Vivian Kane, Kansas City Studio

“Londré’s translation updates the dialogue, but like the original, it’s in verse … It is, to borrow a word from the production’s description, a trifle. But a délicieux one.” —Christine Pivovar, Kansas City Magazine

“Dr Felicia Londré’s translation is superb — wonderfully accessible while also lovingly devoted to Molière’s intentions. I have spent a quarter of a century working with classical texts and the most important thing to remember is that they were all new at one point. They were never intended to be revered at a distance by the viewer, but rather presented in a lively and engaging way. Our production embraces this fully by mixing our contemporary age with the classical style of Molière’s era. Audiences will delight in the witty banter of the text …” —director Matt Schwader, interviewed by Emily Park, INKansasCity

“… a fantastic and lively adaptation which is even more thrilling and vibrant thanks to some of the best talent Kansas City has to offer. I think we’re all ready for this rollicking, frolicking, romping good time!” —Broadway World Kansas City

TARTUFFE

“Constance Congdon slips into Molière’s tricky shoes and the fit is Cinderella-perfect. Congdon’s quicksilver wit and breathless urgency coax the dark heart of Tartuffe into glowing with a twenty-first-century heat.” —John Guare

“[The] over-the-top setting for the Two River Theater production of TARTUFFE is a Texas McMansion decorated like a Disney theme park. A spiraling two-story staircase, its iron railing featuring a recurring motif of a lone star nestled in a spur, dominates the space. The sitting area below, done in high Louis-the-Something, has a damask sofa with silver Texas Ranger badges adorning its skirt and pony skin pillows propped in its corners. Looming above the stairwell, a huge cross, operated by remote control, awaits illumination. Eat your heart out, J. R. The director Jane Page has taken Constance Congdon’s new rhymed version of Molière’s 1664 satire, based on a translation by Virginia Scott, and plopped it down in Texas (somewhere near a Neiman Marcus, as the shopping bags attest) circa 2006. The conceit works wonderfully, with each of the playwright’s comically charged characters slipping naturally into twang and two-step … It all adds up to a fun-filled Texas-style branding, skewering and roasting of a villain everyone loves to hate. ” —Naomi Siegel, New York Times

About the Author

Author

  • Molière

    Jean-Baptiste Poquelin (1622 – 1673), known as Molière, was a French dramatist, director, and actor, and one of the world's greatest masters of comic satire. Of his nearly 40 plays, his most famous are TARTUFFE, THE MISER, THE LEARNED LADIES, THE MISANTHROPE, and THE IMAGINARY INVALID.

  • Richard Nelson

    Richard Nelson's plays include the four-play series, THE APPLE FAMILY (THAT HOPEY CHANGEY THING, SWEET AND SAD, SORRY, REGULAR SINGING (Nominated for Outstanding Play in Drama Desk Awards 2014; Public Theater, 2010 – 2013), NIKOLAI AND THE OTHERS (Lincoln Center Theater, 2013), FAREWELL TO THE THEATRE (Hampstead Theatre, 2012), HOW SHAKESPEARE WON THE WEST, (Huntington Theater, 2008), CONVERSATIONS AT TUSCULUM (Public Theater, 2008), FRANK'S HOME (Goodman Chicago, Playwrights Horizons, 2007), RODNEY'S WIFE (Playwrights Horizons, 2004), WHERE I COME FROM (National Theatre Connections), MADAME MELVILLE (which ran in the West End starring Macaulay Culkin and Irene Jacob and opened in May 2001 Off-Broadway); GOODNIGHT CHILDREN EVERYWHERE (winner of Olivier Award for Best New Play, 2000), KENNETH'S FIRST PLAY (with Colin Chambers, RSC), THE GENERAL FROM AMERICA (at the RSC and the Lucille Lortel Theatre, New York), NEW ENGLAND (RSC and Manhattan Theater Club), MISHA'S PARTY (with Alexander Gelman, RSC and Williamstown Theater Festival), TWO SHAKESPEAREAN ACTORS (Tony nomination for Best Play, RSC and Broadway), COLUMBUS AND THE DISCOVERY OF JAPAN (RSC Barbican), SOME AMERICANS ABROAD (Olivier nomination, Best Comedy; RSC, Lincoln Center and Broadway), LEFT, BETWEEN EAST AND WEST (Hampstead), PRINCIPIA SCRIPTORAE (winner of Time Out Award, RSC and Manhattan Theater Club), THE RETURN OF PINOCCHIO, AN AMERICAN COMEDY, BAL, CONJURING AN EVENT, RIP VAN WINKLE, JUNGLE COUP, THE KILLING OF YABLONSKI, THE VIENNA NOTES (Obie Award). His musicals include JAMES JOYCE'S THE DEAD (starring Christopher Walken and Blair Brown; Playwrights Horizons, Belasco Theatre, Broadway, Ahmanson Theatre, Los Angeles, Kennedy Center, Washington; for which he received a Tony Award in 2000 for Best Musical Book), CHESS (the book for the Broadway musical), PARADISE FOUND (dir: Harold Prince and Susan Strohman), MY LIFE WITH ALBERTINE (with Ricky Ian Gordon; Playwrights Horizons), UNFINISHED PIECE FOR A PLAYER PIANO (with Peter Golub). His translations and adaptations include TYNAN starring Corin Redgrave (with Colin Chambers, RSC and West End), LOLITA with Brian Cox (National), Molnar's THE GUARDSMAN (Kennedy Center), Carriere's THE CONTROVERSY (Public Theater), Fo's ACCIDENTAL DEATH OF AN ANARCHIST (Broadway), Strindberg's THE FATHER with Frank Langella (Broadway) and MISS JULIE (Yale Rep), Beaumarchais' THE MARRIAGE OF FIGARO (the Guthrie and Broadway); Molière's DON JUAN, Ibsen's WILD DUCK and ENEMY OF THE PEOPLE, Pirandello's ENRICO IV, Goldoni's IL CAMPIELLO, Erdmann's THE SUICIDE. With the esteemed translators Richard Pevear and Larissa Volokhonsky, he was co-translated Chekhov's THE CHERRY ORCHARD, Gogol's THE INSPECTOR, Turgenev's A MONTH IN THE COUNTRY and Bulgakov's DON QUIXOTE. Films: Hyde Park on Hudson, staring Bill Murray and Laura Linney (Dir: Roger Michell), Ethan Frome, starring Liam Neeson (Dir: John Madden); Sensibility and Sense, staring Elaine Stritch and Jean Simmons (Dir: David Jones). Television: The End of a Sentence with Edward Herrmann (Dir: David Jones). Radio Plays include: HYDE PARK ON HUDSON, LANGUAGES SPOKEN HERE (Giles Cooper Award), EATING WORDS (Giles Cooper Award), ADVICE TO EASTERN EUROPE, AN AMERICAN WIFE (all BBC).

  • Richard Pevear

    Richard Pevear was born in Waltham, Massachusetts, on 21 April 1943. Pevear earned a B.A. degree from Allegheny College in 1964, and a M.A. degree from the University of Virginia in 1965. He has taught at the University of New Hampshire, The Cooper Union, Mount Holyoke College, Columbia University, and the University of Iowa. In 1998, he joined the faculty of the American University of Paris (AUP), where he taught courses in Russian literature and translation. In 2007, he was named Distinguished Professor of Comparative Literature at AUP, and in 2009 he became Distinguished Professor Emeritus. Besides translating Russian classics, Pevear also translated from the French (Alexandre Dumas, Yves Bonnefoy, Jean Starobinski), Italian (Alberto Savinio), Spanish, and Greek (Aias, by Sophocles, in collaboration with Herbert Golder). He is also the author of two books of poems (Night Talk and Other Poems, and Exchanges). Pevear is mostly known for his work in collaboration with Larissa Volokhonsky on translation of Russian classics.

  • Larissa Volokhonsky

    Larissa Volokhonsky (Russian: Лариса Волохонская) was born into a Jewish family in Leningrad, now St. Petersburg, on 1 October 1945. After graduating from Leningrad State University with a degree in mathematical linguistics, she worked in the Institute of Marine Biology (Vladivostok) and travelled extensively in Sakhalin Island and Kamchatka (1968-1973). Volokhonsky emigrated to Israel in 1973, where she lived for two years. Having moved to the United States in 1975, she studied at Yale Divinity School (1977-1979) and at St Vladimir's Orthodox Theological Seminary (1979-1981), where her professors were the Orthodox theologians Alexander Schmemann and John Meyendorff. She completed her studies of theology with the diploma of Master of Divinity from Yale University. She began collaboration with her husband Richard Pevear in 1985

  • Constance Congdon

    Constance Congdon has been called "one of the best playwrights our country and our language has ever produced" by playwright Tony Kushner in Kushner's introduction to her collection TALES OF THE LOST FORMICANS AND OTHER PLAYS. In addition to TALES OF THE LOST FORMICANS, which has had more than 200 productions worldwide, Congdon's plays include: CASANOVA, DOG OPERA, NO MERCY, LOSING FATHER'S BODY, LIPS and NATIVE AMERICAN. PARADISE STREET, was produced in Los Angeles and Amherst. Three commissions from the American Conservatory Theater: A MOTHER, starring Olympia Dukakis, a new verse version of THE MISANTHROPE, and a new adaptation of THE IMAGINARY INVALID, were all produced by ACT. Also at ACT: MOONTEL SIX, a commission by the ACT Young Conservatory and subsequently performed at London's National Theatre, followed by another production of the two-act version at San Francisco's ZEUM. THE AUTOMATA PIETÀ, another YC commission, received its world premiere at San Francisco's Magic Theatre in 2002; NIGHTINGALES went to the Theatre Royale Bath's Youth Theatre. Congdon's NO MERCY, and its companion piece, ONE DAY EARLIER, were part of the 2000 season devoted to Congdon at the Profile Theatre. She has written a number of opera libretti and seven plays for the Children's Theatre Company of Minneapolis. THE CHILDREN OF THE ELVI, Congdon's epic and NOT suitable for children, play received its premiere at the Key City Public Theater in 2007. Congdon's plays have been produced throughout the world, including Cairo, Tokyo and Berlin. Her new verse version of TARTUFFE is in a single-volume Norton Critical edition and in the Norton Anthology of Drama. In 2013, Congdon was the Honored Playwright at the GPTC and had a fully-staged workshop of her play about the water crisis in the West, TAKE ME TO THE RIVER. Her recent play HAIR OF THE DOG is about Shakespeare and Marlowe. Her most recent play, ENEMY SKY, is about drones, Islamaphobia, and late-in-life love. Congdon has received three NEA grants, two Rockefeller grants (one for Bellagio), an Albert Sloan grants for TAKE ME TO THE RIVER, The Berilla Kerr Award, Helen Merrill Award, The Albert Weissberger Award, New York Newsday's Oppenheimer Award for Best New Play in NYC, New England Theater Conference Award for Distinguished Service to the Theater (2004), two Great Plains Theater Conference Awards, one for Distinguished Service to the Theater and the other as the 2013 Honored Playwright. She is an alumnus of New Dramatists, The Playwright's Center of Minneapolis, and a current member of The Dramatists Guild and PEN. Congdon has taught playwriting at the Yale School of Drama, but her home is as playwright-in-residence at Amherst College where she has taught playwriting for 25 years. Her work is published by Norton, TCG, Inc, but mostly by Broadway Play Publishing.

  • Virginia Scott

    Virginia Scott was Professor Emerita of Theatre at the University of Massachusetts at Amherst. She was a leading authority on early French and Italian theatre, whose books include The Commedia dell'Arte in Paris, Moliere: A Theatrical Life, and the award-winning Women on Staqe in Early Modern France. She was also noted for her translation of Moliere's plays, as well as a critical edition of Tartuffe. She was an experienced dramaturg and had written plays on such historical subjects as Joan of Arc and Marie Antoinette's hair-dresser.

  • Felicia Londré

    Felicia Londré is Curators' Distinguished Professor Emerita of Theatre at the University of Missouri-Kansas City, where she taught theatre history for 42 years, supervised 90 M.A. theses, published 17 books and hundreds of articles and reviews. After retirement in 2019, she devoted three years, as president of the nonprofit KC MOlière: 400 in 2022, to an internationally-acclaimed city-wide, omni-arts celebration of Molière's 400th birthday. That project stimulated her verse translation of THE PESTS from Moliere's Les Fâcheux. With Brieux's AMERICANS IN FRANCE, she is back in her fin-de-siècle comfort zone. Felicia's other translations that have been produced are AN ITALIAN STRAW HAT by Labiche, TRIO by Kado Kostzer and Alfredo Arias, THE SHOW-MAN by Andrée Chedid, THE SNOWMAIDEN by Ostrovsky, TWO MAPLES by Shvarts, and LITTLE HUMPBACKED HORSE by Malyarevsky. Dr. Londré's 2008 book The Enchanted Years of the Stage won the Theatre Library Association's George Freedley Memorial Award. She served a term (2012–14) as Dean of The College of Fellows of the American Theatre. Felicia's recognitions include ATHE's 2001 Outstanding Teacher of Theatre in Higher Education Award and the 2011 Betty Jean Jones Award for Outstanding Teacher of American Theatre and Drama. She taught a semester at Hosei University in Tokyo and has presented papers at many national and international conferences. As Honorary Co-Founder of Kansas City's Heart of America Shakespeare Festival, she served twelve years (1992–2004) on that board. She was resident dramaturg for Missouri Repertory Theatre, 1978–2001.

  • Matt DiCintio

    Matt DiCintio's works include adaptations of MOBY-DICK, A CONFEDERACY OF DUNCES, and Oscar Wilde's SALOME (PlayMakers Repertory Company), and his original plays have been seen Off-Off Broadway and around the country. He has served as dramaturg at The Guthrie Theater, The Playwright's Center, PlayMakers Repertory, Virginia Repertory, among many other companies and universities. He received his PhD in Drama from Tufts University. Matt is a member of The Dramatists Guild of America.