Orlando

Introduction

Orlando: A Biography is a novel by Virginia Woolf, first published on 11 October 1928. A high-spirited romp inspired by the tumultuous family history of the aristocratic poet and novelist Vita Sackville-West, Woolf's lover and close friend, it is arguably one of her most popular novels; Orlando is a history of English literature in satiric form. The book describes the adventures of a poet who changes sex from man to woman and lives for centuries, meeting the key figures of English literary history. Considered a feminist classic, the book has been written about extensively by scholars of women's writing and gender and transgender studies.

The novel has been adapted a number of times. In 1989, director Robert Wilson and writer Darryl Pinckney[1] collaborated on a single-actor theatrical production.[2] This had its British premiere at the Edinburgh Festival in 1996, with Miranda Richardson playing the title role;[3][4] Isabelle Huppert performed in the version in French, which opened at the Théâtre Vidy-Lausanne in Lausanne (Switzerland) in 1993.[5] A film adaptation by Sally Potter, simply titled Orlando, was released in 1992, starring Tilda Swinton in the title role. A stage adaption by Sarah Ruhl premiered in New York City in 2010, and in 2016, composer Peter Aderhold and librettist Sharon L. Joyce premiered an opera based on the work at the Braunschweig State Theater,[6] as well as an opera by Olga Neuwirth, premiered in the Vienna State Opera in December 2019.


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