Open Forum

1.  Rights for Classics

Posted 7 days ago
I'm thinking about possibly doing "The Menaechmi" for our spring play next year, but I'm not sure how to go about getting rights and scripts. I see that Samuel French has a version called "The Brothers Menaechmus", but they don't print scripts anymore, and I'm not finding that version on Amazon. I'm not sure where else to check. Has anyone ever done their OWN translation before? I LOVE this show and would consider making it into a modern day production. But I'm not 100% sure how the whole public domain thing works. Can anyone give me a little advice? I'd greatly appreciate it!

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Heather Cribbs
Theatre Director
New Smyrna Beach High School
New Smyrna Beach, FL
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2.  RE: Rights for Classics

Posted 7 days ago
If you could find a translation that is old enough to be in the public domain I can see no problem. Might be a good piece for the students to do a devised work.

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John Perry
Drama Instructor
Atherton High School
Louisville KY
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3.  RE: Rights for Classics

Posted 7 days ago
The version I read with my Theatre 1 classes is from 1595, and I found the entire script online for free (which is why it's the version I use). So that would be okay to do since it's public domain?

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Heather Cribbs
Theatre Director
New Smyrna Beach High School
New Smyrna Beach, FL
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4.  RE: Rights for Classics

Posted 7 days ago
Yes, it's in the public domain as far as I can tell. The problem with most classic plays (Greek/Roman) are royalties for the translation.

AP

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John Perry
Drama Instructor
Atherton High School
Louisville KY
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5.  RE: Rights for Classics

Posted 6 days ago
I found that translation you are using online. Go for it!

The great thing about using a public domain translation is that you can adapt it as you wish.  You might have students read it through out loud and let you see the places that seem awkward to a modern ear.  Sometimes students have great ideas about how to express something in a more modern way.

In your program, list Plautus as the playwright, the translator by name, and then yourself as "adapted by."

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C. J. Breland
Asheville High School
Asheville NC
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