Cyrano De Bergerac
by Edmond Rostand
Beautifully funny, poignant and often heart wrenching, Cyrano de Bergerac is one of the most famous romantic adventures in world literature. Cyrano is an excellent swordsman from Gascony, a region of France famous for producing stubborn, courageous and grandiose soldiers. He is besotted with the beautiful and alluring Roxanne, and yet, because of his famously huge nose, the forlorn Cyrano feels that he can never truly win her heart and keeps his love as a personal and painful secret. In this classic story of unrequited love, Cyrano befriends the handsome Christian de Neuvillette who helps him woo Roxanne by composing elegant love letters and teaching him the arts of eloquence, courtship and poetry. Living his love vicariously through Christian, while desperately yearning for the truth, Cyrano’s passionate adventure unfolds, taking us on a compelling journey through the romantic streets of Paris, the dramatic battlefield of Arras, and the placid cloisters of the convent where this exquisite tale reaches its heart wrenching and emotional conclusion.
Cyrano de Bergerac was first staged to great acclaim at the Theater de la Porte St. Martin in 1897. This superb play immediately thrust the dramatist Edmond Rostand to prominence and led Cyrano to become one of the most famous French plays of the late 19th century. The story, based on a true historical figure, still attracts audiences today, more than ever, both on the stage and in film. Notable film productions of this tale include Jose Ferrer’s Oscar-winning performance in 1950, Gerard Depardieu’s in 1990, and Steve Martin’s modern American version, Roxanne.