SUR LES PLANCHES
Scripts for Amateur French Theatre
Why this site?
For the past thirty years I have been staging French-language plays annually with the Comédiens Carolingiens, a student troupe started in the 1970s at the University of South Carolina. by the late Bill Mould. Since 2007, I have also directed a community-based troupe sponsored by the Alliance Française de Columbia. Both groups have been successful in adapting classic and modern French theatrical texts to the specific talents (and challenges) of widely varying levels of French language proficiency and mixed casts of non-native and native speakers, as well as to the expectations of American audiences, both francophones and francophiles.
Often enough, popular stage works seem "tailor-made" to our specifications, and we have performed such "classics" as Georges Feydeau's Dormez, je le veux ! and Hortense a dit: "Je m'en fous !", Eugène Ionesco's La cantatrice chauve and Francis Veber's Le dîner de cons, esssentially as written. Almost as often, however, we have turned to our own adaptations of public domain works or penned our own original scripts. Sharing these is the reason for this website. Each posted text comes with its own production history and notes as well as requisite permissions to reproduce and use.
My original hope was to collect them in an actual textbook, but no publisher to date has found the project of sufficiently broad appeal to meet production costs, let alone turn a profit. So use and enjoy! All I ask is to share information on what use you make of the materials as well as your own adventures (successes and failures) staging amateur French theatre in America.