Who is Lope De Vega and why did he and Shakespeare both write a play about the Capulets and the Montagues? An interactive discussion about Hispanic Golden Age master playwright Lope de Vega and his English contemporary William Shakespeare with translator Dakin Matthews and scholars Barbara Fuchs, and Rhonda Sharrah.
This is a companion event to The Capulets and the Montagues.
This event is supported by the Cultural Office of the Embassy of Spain.
ABOUT THE PANELISTS
Barbara Fuchs is Professor of Spanish and English at UCLA. She is the founder and director of the Working Group on the Comedia in Translation and Performance and its Diversifying the Classics initiative, which has been working to promote Hispanic classical theater since 2014. With Jon Rivera of Playwrights’ Arena, she launched Golden Tongues, an adaptation initiative connecting Los Angeles playwrights with comedia to produce brand-new plays. In 2018, she founded LA Escena, Los Angeles’ festival of Hispanic classical theater.
Professor Fuchs has published widely on early modern literature and culture and contemporary performance. She has also translated a wide range of early modern Hispanic classics, including seven comedias with the Working Group, now available on the Diversifying the Classics open-access website or in print from Juan de la Cuesta press. Recent projects include a translation of Lope de Vega’s rediscovered Women and Servants (Juan de la Cuesta 2016); The Golden Age of Spanish Drama, with Gregary Racz (Norton Critical Editions 2018); and 90 Monologues from Classical Spanish Theater, translated and edited with Laura Muñoz and Jennifer Monti (Juan de la Cuesta 2018).
Fuchs’s most recent book is Theater of Lockdown: Digital and Distanced Performance in a Time of Pandemic (Bloomsbury/Methuen 2021), informed by her experience with the 2020 edition of LA Escena. From 2020-21, she served as the UCLA Clark Professor, directing a program on “Resituating the Comedia” at the UCLA Clark Memorial Library and Center for 17th and 18th-Century Studies.
Dakin Matthews has translated eleven Golden Age plays into rhyming verse, five of which are currently published by LinguaText in critical editions, with the remaining six scheduled to come out soon. He has won five Walker Reid awards for these translations from the Association for Hispanic Classical Theatre, and a 2011 Los Angeles Drama Critics Circle Award for The Capulets and the Montagues. His original verse play, The Prince of L.A, also won the 2005 Ted Schmitt Award for Best New Play from the LADCC. His Henry IV adaptation of two Shakespeare history plays won a special Drama Desk Award for its Lincoln Center Theater 2004 production. His ten-minute play ”Her Father’s Daughter” was a winner in the Red Bull Shorts Festival of 2016. He has translated twenty plays in all and written eighteen full-length plays of his own, including a simultaneous trilogy about the Essex Rebellion, a seven-play history cycle about the nineteenth-century papacy, and one musical (with B. T. Ryback). He has published scholarly articles on Shakespeare and on Spanish theatre, as well as a widely used textbook on Shakespeare’s verse called Shakespeare Spoken Here. He is also a busy actor on stage and screen, with over 30 films, 300 TV appearances, and 250 stage plays, including eight on Broadway. He is a Professor Emeritus of English from Cal State, East Bay, and a former Juilliard Drama instructor.
Rhonda Sharrah is a PhD Candidate in the department of English at UCLA. She works on translation and the transnational book trade in early modern Europe. She is also part of the Diversifying the Classics initiative, which promotes the study and performance of early modern Hispanic drama. She is co-authoring the introduction to the group's forthcoming translation of Sor Inés de la Cruz's Love is the Greater Labyrinth, as well as a chapter on Lope's The Capulets and the Montagues in the MLA's new volume on Teaching Approaches to Shakespeare's Romeo & Juliet.