October 22, 2007

Meet my new friends - Episode 1

One of the things about getting a proper education in a field you've been working in for some time, is that the names which have been bandied about for years are suddenly the people I'm studying and writing about. And THEN there are names I've never even heard before, but after studying them I wonder HOW have I missed this person my whole life. SO, I want to introduce you to some new friends:

Lope de Vega - He's written nearly 900 plays. Go ahead, read that sentence again. 900! He claims to have written twice as many, but even 900 is a feat. And they're not trash. Many, many many of them are quite brilliant. Making fanatastic use of smooth exposition 20 years before Henrik Ibsen (the father of modern exposition) was even born. Fast moving and well structured plays. And funny. Many very funny plays. This guy is the Spanish Shakespeare. And yet, because of the disdain shoveled upon Spain by the rest of Western Europe he's largely unknown to English Speaking audiences. But he was a great playwright and as best I can tell, a very cool cat. In Spain when something is outstanding it is described as being "de Vega". I hope my name is someday used as an adjective to describe good things. "That's a Bucking good play!"


Shane Alexander said...

A Bucking good point!

The Medievalist said...

That's a pretty wonderful post--I need to hang around here more often. Or as Lope might say, "Da buten!"