Which plays to read? 1/6: Classical French plays


Want to read theater but don't know where to start ? Here are some tips to get you started !

The reading of theatrical works is a separate exercise with its own particularities.

If you are a beginner in this field and wish to forge a first literary base, here are some guidelines to orient you. 

Today we will start by looking at classical French works. 

We speak of classical texts for texts generally going in a repertoire between the 16th century and the end of the 19th century. 

Let's start with the classic of classics, namely Molière. 

Jean-Baptiste Poquelin, known as Molière is THE French playwright of the classical theater. 

Here is a small selection of his works that you will find in all bookstores and libraries: 

  • Les Précieuses ridicules, 1659
  • L'Ecole des femmes, 1662
  • Dom Juan, 1665 
  • The Misanthrope, 1666
  • L'Avare, 1668
  • The Tartuffe, 1669 
  • Les Fourberies de Scapin, 1670
  • Le Bourgeois gentilhomme, 1670
  • Les Femmes savantes, 1672
  • Le Malade imaginaire, 1673

Pierre Corneille, is also a great French playwright of the 17th century. 

  • Médée, 1635
  • L'Illusion comique, 1636
  • Le Cid, 1637 

Jean Racine is a French playwright of the 17th century 

  • Britannicus, 1669
  • Berenice, 1670
  • Phèdre, 1677

Pierre Carlet, known as Marivaux is a French playwright of the 18th century. 

  • La Double Inconstance, 1723
  • Le Jeu de l'amour et du hasard, 1730 
  • Les Fausses Confidences, 1737 

Alfred de Musset is a 19th century French playwright 

  • The Caprices of Marianne, 1833
  • On ne badine pas avec l'amour, 1834

Edmond Rostand is a French playwright of the late 19th century

  • Cyrano de Bergerac, 1897

Would you like to work on these texts ? 

At Apolline, we offer acting classes dedicated to text interpretation! Come and test your new culture on stage!