Playwrights’ Workshop Montreal presents the Glassco Translation Residency at Tadoussac

Four languages to be translated at a unique artists’ residency in Canada - bringing together playwrights and translators


Montréal, June 4, 2018 – From June 13 to 23, Playwrights’ Workshop Montréal will host the 15th edition of the Glassco Translation Residency, taking place in Tadoussac, Québec. Unique in the country, the 10-day artist retreat allows the art of theatre translation to expand and grow: nowhere else in Canada are theatre translators offered the concentrated, intense time to work directly with the playwright. This year’s residency involves five Canadian plays that will be translated into four different languages that include French, Innu-aimun, Tamil, and Spanish.

Renowned Artists, Dynamic Conversations

Queer/genderqueer and muslim playwright Bilal Baig’s Acha Bacha (English), which thrilled Toronto’s audiences this past February, will be translated into French by Olivier Sylvestre. Sylvestre is an emerging translator and award-winning playwright, known for his play La beauté du monde (Prix Gratien-Gélinas in 2012 and finalist for the Governor General’s Literary Awards in 2015).

The Enchanted Loom (English) by neurologist Dr. Suvendrini Lena will be translated into Tamil by established translator Dushy Gnanapragasam. The Enchanted Loom explores trauma, epilepsy, memory and war through the eyes of a refugee family from Sri Lanka. Planning is underway for the translation to be performed for the Tamil-speaking community in Toronto, as well as staged readings in Sri Lanka.

Jasmine Dubé’s play Marguerite (French) will be translated into Innu-aimun by Joséphine Bacon. Recognized for her exceptional contribution to youth literature, Dubé won Le Grand Prix du Conseil des arts de Montréal for her immense contribution to the vitality and development of theatre in 2005.  Bacon is a notable poet, documentary filmmaker, and Innu translator who earlier this year was inducted into the Ordre des arts et des lettres du Québec.

A previous participant in the residency as a translator, Michael Mackenzie returns to Tadoussac – this time in the role of playwright. His new piece about the valuation of art, Art Object (English) will be translated into French by renowned Canadian actor and writer, Alexis Martin.

Also by Michael Mackenzie, Instructions for a Socialist Government Looking to Abolish Christmas (English) will be translated into Spanish by Jaime Arrambide who joins the residency from Argentina. Instructions, a play based on the 2008 financial crisis, delves into the hardships of economic disaster and the soul-destroying world of finance. Considering the recent return of economic difficulties  in Argentina, the theme should resonate well with Argentinian audiences.

The Art of Translation

Award-winning translation dramaturg Bobby Theodore returns this year to mentor the playwrights and translators as they immerse themselves in the 10 day residency. Mr. Theodore’s past projects have included the translation of François Archambault’s You Will Remember Me, The Leisure Society and 15 Seconds, for which he was nominated for the Governor General’s Award for Literary Translation in 2000.

Since its establishment, the Glassco Translation Residency at Tadoussac has translated over 55 plays in more than 10 languages. The plays have been performed across Canada and internationally, with translations allowing diverse stories to reach wider audiences. Translations at Tadoussac have included works from Michel Tremblay, Michel Marc Bouchard, Albert Camus, Marie Clements, Hannah Moscovitch and Carole Frechette among others.

The residency was founded by the late Bill Glassco (Order of Canada, Canadian theatre director and founder of Toronto’s Tarragon Theatre). In his long career, Mr. Glassco championed new Canadian work, and translated notable Quebec plays including the work of Michel Tremblay (Les Belles Soeurs, Hosanna, Le Vrai Monde? and many others). Today, this translation residency is made possible through PWM’s partnership with the Cole Foundation, and the support of donations in the memory of Bill Glassco.

About Playwrights’ Workshop Montreal (PWM)

Playwrights’ Workshop Montreal (PWM) is a non-profit organization that provides a creative space and support for Canadian playwrights and theatre creators. Led by Artistic Director Emma Tibaldo, PWM offers a critical and vibrant environment for Canadian playwrights to further their craft and prepare new creations for production.


More information on the Glassco Translation Residency at Tadoussac: https://www.playwrights.ca/national-residencies/glassco-translation-residency/

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