They know him in Italy. Japanese theatre goers have applauded him. Mexico awarded him "best play of the year". He has 26 plays and 6 screen plays under his belt. His work has been translated into more than 10 languages. Many of his plays have been adapted for the screen. "Lilies" won a Genie in 1996; "L'Histoire de l'oie" was a Gemeau in 1998. "Tom at the Farm" won the Critics Award at the Venice Film Festival. Yet English Canada knows very little about Michel Marc Bouchard.
That is changing.
Michel Marc Bouchard was born and grew up in rural Quebec 58 years ago and he is today - it could be argued - Canada's most respected contemporary playwright. He writes about love and violence and sex and history, but most importantly, about free will.
This summer he is shifting back and forth between the Shaw Festival in Niagara-on-the-Lake, where his newest play "Divine" will open next season and the Stratford Festival where the English translation of his play, "Christina the Girl King", premiered earlier this month.
Karin Wells spoke to Michel Marc Bouchard backstage at the Shaw Festival.