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All of Wilbur's theatrical works, with the notable exception of lyrics for one Broadway musical - Leonard Bernstein's Candide - have been translations of classical French theatre, especially the comedies of Molire. (One famous poet told me that Wilbur's translations were as good as her originals - and this was a writer not given to flattery.) The distinction, variety and extent of his efforts have earned him a position as one of the greatest translators in the history of American poetry. Do you have any advice for poets or playwrights who want to translate or produce classical theatre? I would urge such translators to do their work faithfully and straight, and to insist on the same qualities in any production.
A TRANSLATOR'S TALE Dana Gioia American Theatre; Apr 2009; 26, 4; Docstoc pg. 46 Reproduced with permission of
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