Heat Wave


86 pages
ISBN 1-896239-12-9
DDC C842'.54




Translated by Bill Glassco
Reviewed by Ian C. Nelson

Ian C. Nelson is assistant director of libraries at the University of
Saskatchewan, and président de la Troupe du Jour, Regina Summer Stage.


Michel Marc Bouchard is currently riding a crest of fame and popularity
because of his highly acclaimed and award-winning Les Feluettes
(Lilies). Les grandes chaleurs dates from 1991 and was published in
French by Leméac in 1993. It now appears in English as Heat Wave, in
Bill Glassco’s lively and accomplished translation. Unlike the
angst-ridden and vengeance-motivated Les Feluettes, Heat Wave is a
fast-paced farce, rife with mistaken identities, hidden desires, and
sexual innuendoes in the classic, almost absurd, French tradition. Set
at a lakeside cottage during a heat wave, it is a story of May/December
relationships, guilt complexes, and games of appearances-and-lies.
Nothing is sacred as the characters (a family comprising a recently
widowed mother and twin brother and sister) try to dispose of the ashes
of the man who was the woman’s husband and the twins’ father while
simultaneously dealing with two would-be suitors. This play has been
packing them in for several seasons as summer-theatre fare across
Quebec. With the publication of this translation, English-speaking
audiences can now partake of the hilarity.


Bouchard, Michel Marc., “Heat Wave,” Canadian Book Review Annual Online, accessed June 13, 2024, https://cbra.library.utoronto.ca/items/show/5317.