I went to my first “reading” on Friday night and I must say I was quite delighted. Having recently finished my first Bukowski, I literally jumped out of my seat when I received a FB invitation from Michel Anthony, a local sculptor, to attend the event.
There were maybe 30 people for the reading, which was carried out by a group of 5 actors. They read from an assortment of 14 texts taken from various periods of his career. The results were great. Even the fact that everything was in French gave it a little extra something. It’s interesting; when you read the same book in two different languages, the experience is altered. In reality, you’re no longer reading the same book. Because the language has changed, every preconceived notion of how the writing is interpreted changes along with it. Almost nothing is perfectly translatable, even short sentences, so see what it does for prose and more for poetry. It’s… like rediscovering the same book from a different perspective.
The added bonus of having something read to you rather than reading it silently yourself is that you are exposed to another person’s interpretation. Coupled with another language; the experience is captivating.