Ruy Blas

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Ruy Blas is a tragedy in five acts by Victor Hugo (1802–1885)[1]

The original text

Considered by many as Hugo's best theatrical work, the play was written and first performed in Paris at the Théâtre de la Renaissance on November 8, 1838.

Translations and adaptations

Besides English translations of the text, e.g. by Edmund Falconer (as Ruy Blas, 1858, performed at the Princess Theatre, London), the play also had many subsequent imitators, adaptations and derivations, including Don César de Bazan (1844), a commissioned work based on a character in the play. (See Don César de Bazan)

For other works inspired by or derived from Hugo's work, see:

Performance history in South Africa

1893: Performed in English as Ruy Blas in the Vaudeville Theatre, Cape Town, by Vernon Reid and his company


D.C. Boonzaier, 1923. "My playgoing days – 30 years in the history of the Cape Town stage", in SA Review, 9 March and 24 August 1932. (Reprinted in Bosman 1980: pp. 374-439.)

F.C.L. Bosman, 1980. Drama en Toneel in Suid-Afrika, Deel II, 1856-1916. Pretoria: J.L. van Schaik: p. 394.

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