The Frenchman Juan de Grimaldi was instrumental in the development of the Spanish theatre in the 1820s and 30s, at a time when censorship, repression, and economic chaos had left it in a state of stagnation. As impresario and stage director, he trained actors in the new style of declamation, made physical changes in sets and lighting, translated recent French plays into Spanish, and encouraged the writing of original Spanish plays. His own magical comedy, La Pata de Cabra (1829), was outstandingly successful. Grimaldi was also a wealthy businessman and newspaper editor, and the patron of many important Spanish Romantic writers. He was active in politics, vigorously defending the moderate policies of the Queen Regent, Maria Cristina, and of Prime Minister Ramon de Nervaez. Even after his return to Paris, Grimaldi continued to work secretly as an agent of the Spanish government. Based on original archival materials, this is the first in-depth study of Grimaldi's involvement in the literary and political progress of nineteenth-century Spain.
Publisher: Cambridge University Press