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Michel Vinaver
Photo : Lot
Michel Vinaver

List of works mentioned in Actes du Théâtre :
Bettencourt Boulevard ou une histoire de France
Les Travaux et les jours
Les Voisins
L’Émission de télévision
[ print version ]

Actes du Théâtre n°85 October 2015

Michel Vinaver was born in 1927. In 1941 he emigrated from France to New York with his family. He studied at the Lycée français then in college, where he obtained a Bachelor of Arts degree. Meeting Albert Camus and T. S. Eliot were decisive events. Upon returning to France in 1947 he studied sociology at the Sorbonne. In 1953, he began working for the Gillette Company where he was an executive and director until 1980. After two novels of his were published by Gallimard, Lataume in 1950 and L’Objecteur in 1951, he became a writer, playwright and translator, parallel to his role in the corporate world. After meeting Gabriel Monnet, a major figure in the decentralization of French theater, he wrote his first play in 1955, Aujourd’hui ou les Coréens (subsequently known as Les Coréens), staged by Roger Planchon in Lyon in 1956 and given a rave review by Roland Barthes. He began teaching at the Sorbonne Nouvelle in 1982. His most memorable plays include: Les Huissiers, 1957, Iphigénie Hôtel, 1959, La Demande d’emploi, 1973, Dissident, il va sans dire, 1978, Les Travaux et les jours, 1979, L’Ordinaire, 1981, Les Voisins, 1984, L’Émission de télévision, 1988, 11 septembre 2001, 2002. They have been staged by Jean-Marie Serreau, Roger Planchon, Jacques Lassalle, Antoine Vitez, Alain Françon and Arnaud Meunier. Christian Schiaretti staged Les Coréens at the Comédie-Française in 1993, and Par-dessus bord at the TNP in 2008. In 2009, his play L’Ordinaire entered the Comédie-Française repertory, staged by the playwright and Gilone Brun.