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Readings | Bernard-Marie Koltès: Seven Plays


bernard marie koltès

Albertine Bookstore
972 5th Avenue
New York, US 10075

Friday, April 8, 2022 | 6pm


Join us to celebrate the Segal Center’s latest publication Bernard-Marie Koltès: Seven Plays; edited and with an introduction by scholar and translator Amin Erfani.

The anthology is the first collection of the seven major plays by seminal French playwright Bernard-Marie Koltès (1948-1989) in American English. Translated in over thirty languages, Koltès is considered to be the most important French playwright of the end of the twentieth century, and heir to the legacy of Jean Cocteau, Jean Genet, Samuel Beckett, Sarah Kane and Heiner Müller. His style is marked by a profusion of poetic language–reshaping traditional theatrical language in both content and form, while exploring new and unknown territories. A fervent traveler, his work was deeply inspired by his exposure to new languages and cultures, particularly from such places as Lagos (Nigeria), São Paulo (Brazil), Tikal (Guatemala), Managua (Nicaragua), New York (United States), and Lisbon (Portugal). His attention was constantly directed toward the figure of the underdog and marginalized communities. But it is in New York that Koltès is said to have found his “place in this world,” and particularly in the gay liberation movement in the late 70s and early 80s. He died at the age of 41 due to complications from the AIDS virus.

Despite his significant relationship with the United States, until now no definite anthology of American translations of Koltès existed. This unique volume provides a fresh set of translations that rigorously bring into focus Koltès’ poetic and musical language. “Koltès now sounds like Dante speaking in the voice of Sam Shepard,” wrote The New York Times.

This event will be in English and hosted at Albertine Bookstore. It is free with RSVP.  You can also watch this event on livestream at

Translators for Koltès anthology are: The Night Just Before the Forests (Amin Erfani); Battle of Black and Dogs (Michaël Attias); West Pier (Marion Schoevaert & Theresa M. Weber); In the Solitude of Cotton Fields (Amin Erfani); Tabataba (Amin Erfani); Back to the Desert (Andy Bragen); Roberto Zucco (Anna G.R. Miller)

Short readings of excerpts directed by Amin Erfani and Frank Hentschker with New York actors Ben Becher, Josefina Scaro, Michael Wiener, Crystal Marie Stewart, and Carl Hancock Rux, will be followed by a conversation with Editor Amin Erfani, a Q & A, and a reception.

The evening is co-presented by Villa Albertine in partnership with The Segal Center, GC CUNY.

In partnership with

The Martin E. Segal Theatre Center, The Graduate Center, CUNY

The Martin E. Segal Theatre Center (MESTC), The Graduate Center, CUNY, is a non-profit center for theatre, dance, and film affiliated with CUNY’s Ph.D. Program in Theatre. Originally founded in 1979 as the Center for Advanced Studies in Theatre Arts (CASTA), it was renamed in March of 1999 to recognize Martin E. Segal, one of New York City’s outstanding leaders of the arts. The Center’s primary focus is to bridge the gap between the academic and professional performing arts communities by providing an open environment for the development of educational, community-driven, and professional projects in the performing arts.

As a result, MESTC is a global home to theatre scholars, students, playwrights, actors, directors, dramaturgs, and performing arts managers, as well as both the local and international theatre communities. 

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