Translation, Adaptation, Otherness: 'Foreignisation' in Theatre Practice

Lead Research Organisation: University of Kent
Department Name: Sch of Arts

Abstract

According to the British Theatre Repertoire Survey, in 2013 only 3.2% of all the plays performed in the UK were in translation, and yet according to the Migration Observatory, 12.5% of UK residents are foreign-born, only 80% of the population identifies as 'white British' and hundreds of languages are spoken in the country's schools, especially in London. The lack of diversity in British theatres is highlighted in a 2014 Arts Council England report, stating: 'It is vital that the arts and cultural workforce becomes more representative of the society it serves' (p. 1).

This two-year project argues that translation has a key role to play in fostering equality in the performing arts. In order to make British theatres attractive to, and representative of, a more diverse audience, this project proposes to further, and widen awareness of, existing debates on the ethics and politics of translation among practitioners, industry professionals, translators, audiences, students and scholars. At a time when immigration is at the centre of the political agenda and nationalist, anti-European sentiments are on the rise, theatre translation and the representation of otherness on stage can offer a public arena for intercultural dialogue.

The Fellow aims to carry out research and public engagement activities that place the politics of translation and the representation of otherness through theatre in the public eye. The research will investigate questions such as: What are the current dominant translation/adaptation strategies in theatre? What constitutes a 'foreignising' approach to theatre translation/adaptation? Can the same approach work for different kinds of sources? What are the effects of 'foreignisation' on performance and mise en scène? How is a 'foreignising' translation draft negotiated by theatre-makers in the rehearsal room? How do audiences respond to it?

Translation scholar Lawrence Venuti champions the translation strategy he calls 'foreignisation', as a as oposed to 'domestication', in that the former tries to limit the degree to which the unfamiliar is forcibly turned into the familiar, silencing cultural difference. Despite the recent academic interest in 'foreignisation', theatre studies still lack a debate on what a 'foreignising' approach to stage translation would mean for text and performance, and whether theatre - as opposed to literature - requires a distinctive approach. The question of how current theatre training and ideological beliefs influence translation practices in British theatres is also underexplored, and so is the notion of a 'foreignising' approach to adaptation. Meanwhile, the theatre industry tends to take 'domestication' for granted in an attempt to appeal to the widest possible audience, dismissing 'foreignisation' as a clumsier, riskier, yet untested alternative.

The Fellow and her collaborators will select three plays for translation by playwrights based in Europe and writing in Polish, Spanish and French - representing three of the most spoken European migrant languages in the UK - and organise practice-as-research workshops with professional performers and creative collaborators, led by scholar-translators, to test 'foreignising' strategies. The Fellow and her Research Associate will carry out qualitative research during and after the creative process with performers and audiences.

Each workshop will present their outcome to the public in the form of rehearsed readings at the Gate Theatre in London in May and June 2016. Each performance will be followed by a post-show debate. Taking place in the run-up to the in/out referendum on Britain's membership of the EU during what will be one of the most crucial political debates of recent times, the Fellow aims to widen the reach the project by working with our consultants, Firehouse Creative Productions, to develop one of the plays into full production for the Edinburgh Fringe in 2017.

Planned Impact

The proposed project seeks to make an impact on the following constituencies:

1. Theatre industry (managers, programmers, producers, practitioners, translators, etc.)
The proposed project is founded on the collaboration between theatre academics (the Fellow, Advisory Board members, the RA and the scholar-translators) and theatre industry players (our consultants Firehouse Creative Productions, the Advisory Board members, directors, performers and so on). The project is therefore ideally placed to make an impact on those working in British theatres and aims to concentrate its efforts in this sense, while at the same time cultivating impact on other communities mentioned below. Our impact on the theatre industry will be sustained through a series of different activities:

a. Advisory Board. The establishment of an Advisory Board - comprising both academics and individuals in key industry positions and meeting at several stages during the project - will encourage the exchange of ideas among Board members around the industry's current practices on theatre translation and how they can be improved. This awareness can then trickle down to their colleagues.

b. Workshops. The rehearsal workshops will provide the opportunity to foster an engagement with practitioners, namely performers, directors, designers, producers and translators.

c. Rehearsed readings and post-show discussions. We will organise open performances to showcase the outcomes of the project in our partner venue, the Gate Theatre in London, and arrange for post-show discussions to be moderated by young theatre critics working primarily for online publications in order to maximise our presence on social media. We will make direct contact with industry players through our Advisory Board and invite them to our staged readings.

d. Publications and blogs. In order to disseminate the ideas and outcomes of the project to the general public, the Fellow will set up a dedicated website, where blogs by herself and other participants will be published during and after the creative process. The Fellow will aim to get the project covered in industry journals, such as The Stage, and in theatre reviews websites. A 'foreignising' manifesto will appear in an established website, such as Exeunt Magazine.

2. Cultural policy-makers and theatre programmers
Aspects of this project will be of interest to cultural policy-makers specializing in equality and diversity, and publications arising from this project might feed into the next ACE report on equality and diversity in the arts. The publication of the 'foreignising' manifesto will make a case for theatre translation as an ethical imperative, and 'foreignising' strategies as one possible approach to enhance diversity and representation in British theatres.

3. Theatre spectators from both British and migrant backgrounds
Spectators of the project's outcome performances - both in their rehearsed reading and full-blown stage of development - will be able to experience plays from major non-British theatre cultures, which would otherwise not have been accessible in English. Spectators from those contexts out of which the plays emerged will be able to see elements of their culture performed on stage in a professional British theatre.

4. Translated playwrights
Authors of the translated plays will benefit from international exposure on British stages, and the translation of their work into English will contribute to the circulation of their texts in other English-speaking countries. Our partner, the Italy-based online theatre publisher Cue Press, will publish the translated plays as e-books or print-on-demand at the end of the rehearsed workshops, and these will become available to download at a very competitive price all over the world.

Publications

10 25 50
 
Title Black Tenderness: The Passion of Mary Stuart 
Description As part of the practice-as-research element of my project, we performed a staged reading of our translation into English of Denise Despeyroux's 'Black Tenderness: The passion of Mary Stuart' at the Gate Theatre in London on 24 June 2016. This was translated by Simon Breden (University of Nottingham) and directed by Tara Robinson. This was the first ever translation of this text and the premiere performance in English. The performance was followed by a post-show discussion. 40 people were in attendance. See photos of this performance on our website, www.translatingtheatre.com/galleries 
Type Of Art Performance (Music, Dance, Drama, etc) 
Year Produced 2016 
Impact We know that the project, particularly all three staged readings, has had a direct impact on at least the work of three directors working across the UK: - Arne Pohlmeier of Two Gents Productions sought our support in delivering a full-blown production of the Polish play, Piotr Lachmann's Gliwice Hamlet; - Daniel Goldman of Tangram Theatre, who explicitly stated that his work on our project informed his production of Thebes Land, presented at the Arcola Theatre in London in December 2016 - also a play in translation. - Kay Michael of Empty Deck theatre company contacted us with an offer to collaborate as a direct consequence of Michael's exposure to our work. - Several other theatre companies, such as ForeignAffairs and LegalAliens, contacted me wishing to collaborate. The fact that we have had a direct effect on three UK theatre companies demonstrates the project's urgency and importance within and beyond academia. We can also demonstrate the impact that our process had on the project's performers, many of whom regarded our work together as an eye-opener and unlike the work they are accustomed to. See their testimonies in our documentary, www.translatingtheatre.com/documentary 
URL http://exeuntmagazine.com/features/translating-theatre-trial-and-error/
 
Title Gliwice Hamlet at the V&A Museum 
Description This performance of Gliwice Hamlet was a continuation of our exploration of this text, commissioned by the Victoria and Albert Museum's annual Performance Festival in April 2017. The artistic team behind the staged reading at the Gate was asked to workshop the play for a presentation at the V&A, and we took this opportunity to develop the play further by commissioning a musical score and some video projections. The performance was attended by 50 members of the public. The presentation was followed by a Q&A with the research and artistic team being the project. 
Type Of Art Performance (Music, Dance, Drama, etc) 
Year Produced 2017 
Impact We know that the project, including this staged reading, has had a direct impact on at least the work of three directors working across the UK: - Arne Pohlmeier of Two Gents Productions sought our support in delivering a full-blown production of the Polish play, Piotr Lachmann's Gliwice Hamlet; - Daniel Goldman of Tangram Theatre, who explicitly stated that his work on our project informed his production of Thebes Land, presented at the Arcola Theatre in London in December 2016 - also a play in translation. - Kay Michael of Empty Deck theatre company contacted us with an offer to collaborate as a direct consequence of Michael's exposure to our work. - Several other theatre companies, such as ForeignAffairs and LegalAliens, contacted me wishing to collaborate. The fact that we have had a direct effect on three UK theatre companies demonstrates the project's urgency and importance within and beyond academia. We can also demonstrate the impact that our process had on the project's performers, many of whom regarded our work together as an eye-opener and unlike the work they are accustomed to (see their testimonies in our documentary, www.translatingtheatre.com/documentary 
URL https://www.vam.ac.uk/event/vBL4nQBG/translating-theatre-gliwice-hamlet-in-london
 
Title Gliwice Hamlet: Rehearsal or Touch me Through the Pane 
Description As part of the practice-as-research element of my project, we presented a staged reading of Piotr Lachmann's Gliwice Hamlet at the Gate Theatre in London on 8 July 2016. This was translated by Aneta Mancewicz (University of Birmingham) and Bryce Lease (Royal Holloway, University of London) and directed by Arne Pohlmeier. 39 people were in attendance. The performance was followed by a post-show talk with the research and creative teams. You can see photos of this performance on our website, www.translatingtheatre.com/galleries, and a link to feature on this performance published in Exeunt Magazine is attached below. 
Type Of Art Performance (Music, Dance, Drama, etc) 
Year Produced 2016 
Impact We know that the project, and specifically all three staged readings, has had a direct impact on at least the work of three directors working across the UK: - Arne Pohlmeier of Two Gents Productions sought our support in delivering a full-blown production of the Polish play, Piotr Lachmann's Gliwice Hamlet; - Daniel Goldman of Tangram Theatre, who explicitly stated that his work on our project informed his production of Thebes Land, presented at the Arcola Theatre in London in December 2016 - also a play in translation. - Kay Michael of Empty Deck theatre company contacted us with an offer to collaborate as a direct consequence of Michael's exposure to our work. - Several other theatre companies, such as ForeignAffairs and LegalAliens, contacted me wishing to collaborate. The fact that we have had a direct effect on three UK theatre companies demonstrates the project's urgency and importance within and beyond academia. We can also demonstrate the impact that our process had on the project's performers, many of whom regarded our work together as an eye-opener and unlike the work they are accustomed to. See their testimonies in our documentary, www.translatingtheatre.com/documentary. 
URL http://exeuntmagazine.com/features/foreignisation-translation-hamlet-gliwicki/
 
Title The Snakes 
Description As part of the practice-as-research element of this project, we presented a staged reading of Marie Ndiaye's The Snakes at the Gate Theatre in London on 1 July 2016. This was translated by Kélina Gotman (King's College London) and directed by Daniel Goldman. This was the first translation of the play and its premiere in English. 42 people were in attendance. The performance was followed by a post-show discussion with the research and creative teams. You can view photos of this performance on our website, www.translatingtheatre.com/galleries, and a link to feature article on it on Exeunt Magazine is attached below. 
Type Of Art Performance (Music, Dance, Drama, etc) 
Year Produced 2016 
Impact We know that the project, particularly with all staged readings, has had a direct impact on at least the work of three directors working across the UK: - Arne Pohlmeier of Two Gents Productions sought our support in delivering a full-blown production of the Polish play, Piotr Lachmann's Gliwice Hamlet; - Daniel Goldman of Tangram Theatre, who explicitly stated that his work on our project informed his production of Thebes Land, presented at the Arcola Theatre in London in December 2016 - also a play in translation. - Kay Michael of Empty Deck theatre company contacted us with an offer to collaborate as a direct consequence of Michael's exposure to our work. - Several other theatre companies, such as ForeignAffairs and LegalAliens, contacted me wishing to collaborate. The fact that we have had a direct effect on three UK theatre companies demonstrates the project's urgency and importance within and beyond academia. We can also demonstrate the impact that our process had on the project's performers, many of whom regarded our work together as an eye-opener and unlike the work they are accustomed to. See their testimonies in our documentary, www.translatingtheatre.com/documentary 
URL http://exeuntmagazine.com/features/foreignisation-stage-les-serpents/
 
Description 'Translation, Adaptation, Otherness' (TAO) is a two-year AHRC Leadership Fellowship that was designed to address the alarming marginalisation of foreign-language writers in the British theatre repertoire (3.8% of all plays in the UK in 2013 were translations, and 2.2% of all performances according to the British Theatre Repertoire 2013). Meanwhile, migrants in the UK represent about 14% of the population, and in London the percentage is closer to 40%. I believe these figures point to an issue of social justice: migrant communities are being underrepresented and marginalised by the British theatre industry and its reluctance to engage with non-English plays. This is no less than discrimination on the basis of cultural and linguistic difference, but the issue is not yet perceived as such by public opinion. Part of the reason for carrying out this project is to raise public awareness of translation as an ethical imperative in a multicultural society such as ours.
To address this concern, my fellowship project comprised a practice-as-research element, entitled 'Translating Theatre', which was developed in 2016, when a team of scholar-translators, directors and performers came together under my leadership to translate and perform in English three continental plays written in Polish, Spanish and French by Europe-based writers with a migrant background. Simon Breden (University of Nottingham) translated Denise Despeyroux's Black Tenderness: The Passion of Mary Stuart, a magical realist comedy about history and our relationship with its vestiges. Kélina Gotman (King's College London) translated Marie NDiaye's The Snakes, a symbolic drama about three women - the mother, the wife and the ex-wife of a man we never get to see - which keeps spectators hanging with its motionless, suffocated atmosphere. Aneta Mancewicz (Birmingham University) and Bryce Lease (Royal Holloway) translated Piotr Lachmann's Gliwice Hamlet, an autobiographical, anti-realist rewriting of Shakespeare in which the author's experience of displacement during WWII brings up issues of memory and identity.
These plays were presented as staged readings at the Gate Theatre, London, immediately following the Brexit referendum vote. Our practice as research offered opportunities to reflect on issues of migration of peoples and texts from one cultural context to another at a highly topical time in the history of the UK. The project was developed to resist, and offer a theatrical counter-narrative to, the anti-immigration rhetoric gaining more and more purchase in British political discourses.
A key motivation behind this project is a sense of dissatisfaction with dominant theatre translation practices in the UK which tend to over-domesticate 'foreign' plays. Recurrent practices in the mainstream and subsidised sectors tend to select foreign plays that already conform to the dominant expectations in British theatre and turn them into fully integrated 'domestic' products that fit audience expectations. The work of American translation scholar Lawrence Venuti offered the main critical background to our research. The goal of our practice-as-research consisted in investigating how to apply Venuti's influential notion of 'foreignization' to a stage context, exploring the opportunities and challenges afforded by discursive, non-discursive, and performative strategies that could challenge the prevailing ethnocentric approach to theatre translation. The project asked how translation might be able to highlight, rather than silence, linguistic and cultural difference, and endeavored to engage with the 'foreign' text in an ethical way by making it the ground for aesthetic innovation and political resistance at 'home'. Every effort was made to select outstanding plays that would challenge the perceived taste of British audiences and the conventions of British theatre, challenging generally held assumptions about what should be translated, and not only how. Using translation as an intervention in the existing ecology of UK theatre, the project sought to mobilise researchers, makers, students and audiences in order to make theatre more inclusive and representative of linguistic and cultural difference.
Venuti defines foreignization as an ethical effect on readers sought by adopting strategies that position the translated text outside standard practices, conventions, and expectations in the receiving locale, in order to signify its difference (Venuti, The Translator's Invisibility, 2008: 15-16, 18-20, 125). Our practice-as-research re-assessment of Venuti's key notion of 'foreignisation' led us to collectively examine practical strategies to inscribe acts of resistance in the target context by choosing non-standard texts, rejecting 'fluency' as translation imperative and subverting the standard dialect. As Venuti explains, achieving a 'foreignising' effect depends entirely on the target context and the translator's ability to select types of texts that are excluded from the target context in order to challenge cultural codes, and to deviate from existing norms by using marginal discourses to translate the chosen texts. Each scholar-translator and director worked towards the project's brief independently and engaged with Venuti's concerns in different ways, at times consciously departing from his theories and recommendations.
Our main research questions included:
- What kinds of plays would be able to disrupt cultural codes in 2016 London?
- What marginal textual strategies would we use to translate them?
- How might performance strategies supplement textual strategies?
In order to answer these questions, the project proposed to employ an innovative combination of methodologies, such as practice as research but also ethnography and audience research. The scholar-translators devised strategies to resist over-domestication of linguistic and cultural difference, and then each led a week-long practice-as-research rehearsal workshop with theatre professionals, exploring how the desired effect - to stage an alien spectatorial experience - would alter performance in conjunction with the text. During these practice-as-research workshops, I carried out ethnographic research through participant observation, so that scholar-translators and theatre-makers had relative freedom to pursue the project's research goals. Each workshop presented different outcomes and put forward different strategies to subvert existing expectations regarding how foreign plays are translated and staged in the UK. After each rehearsed reading, post-graduate students carried out audience feedback interviews. Examining these, I began to evaluate the effects that the choice of text, combined with textual and performative strategies, had provoked in our audiences in a peer-reviewed article for Modern Drama, 61.3 (2018, in press), attached as a pdf.
Anonymous peer reviewer 1 'wholeheartedly recommend[ed] publication' of this article. Peer reviewer 2 wrote: 'The essay offers a thought-provoking and illuminating account of the project's findings. It establishes, in a coherent and convincing fashion, the conceptual framework and the theatrical contexts for the practical research and for the discussion of the case studies. These highlight the importance and significance of the questions that this project raises about the representation and the reception and perception of "otherness" and "difference" in British theatre, not just for practices of translation but for all aspects of production. As indicated by the author, while many of the issues broached in this study are of a deep-rooted and longstanding nature, recent political developments in the UK (and in other countries) render this project especially timely. I genuinely enjoyed reading this essay. It is written in a clear, accessible, and engaging manner and it offers some fascinating insights into the politics of performing heteroglossia on contemporary London stages that are of relevance and value to both scholars and to theatre practitioners alike'.
The Fellowship is currently in its final 'writing up' stage until 2019. Future outputs include a short 20,000-word monograph: Margherita Laera, Theatre & Translation. Basingstoke; New York: Palgrave Macmillan, 2019.
Exploitation Route Theatre makers, producers and funders may find my research important because it draws attention to translation for the stage, its politics, ethics and complexities. Theatre-makers wanting to stage foreign plays in the UK may want to consider my findings in order to devise effective staging strategies and approaches to international plays. Producers may be interested in the project findings because they effectively suggest a shift in mind-set, from commissioning familiar experiences to commissioning unfamiliar experiences when dealing with non-English plays. Funders may be interested in the project findings because they request more financial support for theatre translation as a matter of social justice.
Sectors Creative Economy

URL http://www.translatingtheatre.com
 
Description Pathways to Impact report Impact on theatre professionals. We know that the project has had a direct impact on the work of the directors and actors we worked with in 2016. The three-week practice-as-research workshop series involved the work of 30 people between researchers and scholar-translators, directors, producers, writers, critics, actors, film-makers, a stage manager, a sound designer and a set designer. Director Arne Pohlmeier (Two Gents Productions) has sought to develop the play he worked on with us into a full-blown production, while Daniel Goldman (Tangram Theatre) explicitly stated that his work on our project would have informed his production of Thebes Land, presented at the Arcola Theatre in London in December 2016. Specifically, the principles of our translating techniques have influenced the two directors above. Furtermore, our work on foreignisation has attracted the interest of several practitioners who have written to me to request guidelines and findings, which were finally published in my book Theatre & Translation. We feel that the fact that - so early in the project - we have had a direct effect on three UK theatre companies demonstrates the project's urgency and importance within and beyond academia. Significant is also the impact the process had on the project's performers, many of whom regarded our work together as an eye-opener and unlike the work they are accustomed to. Particularly significant in this regard are actor Kudzi Hudson's reflections on being cast as a black British-Zimbabwean actor in a Polish play: 'the main difference was that there was no pretext to why I was here, no questions such as "why is she black, are we acknowledging that she's black?", questions which as an actor of colour you have to deal with all the time' (see our documentary on the University of Kent's School of Arts youtube channel, https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=at8SsTI9I3E, for the quote). We are happy that Hudson and her fellow performer Tonderai Munyevu were keen to pursue work with Arne Pohlmeier on the full production of Gliwice Hamlet. Unfortunately, given the nature of the text and its difficult integration into a UK theatre landscape, Pohlmeier was not successful in his search for a co-producer.
First Year Of Impact 2016
Sector Creative Economy,Culture, Heritage, Museums and Collections
Impact Types Cultural,Economic

 
Description A Web Archive of Theatre Translation Resources
Amount £62,415 (GBP)
Funding ID AH/S011773/1 
Organisation Arts & Humanities Research Council (AHRC) 
Sector Public
Country United Kingdom
Start 09/2019 
End 09/2020
 
Description Contemporary European Drama in Translation on the British Stage 
Organisation Royal Central School of Speech and Drama
Country United Kingdom 
Sector Academic/University 
PI Contribution Margherita Laera was selected to be a researcher and co-organiser for the British Academy-funded project 'Contemporary European Drama in Translation on the British Stage'. This project organised a 5-day festival of new play readings at the Yard Theatre in London in January 2019 and a 2-day conference at the Royal Central School of Speech and Drama. Margherita helped select the plays for the readings at the Yard, co-organised the conference and gave a paper about her work.
Collaborator Contribution Margherita helped select the plays for the readings at the Yard and chaired a post-show discussion at the theatre. She also co-organised the conference and gave a paper about her work.
Impact A theatre festival of play readings at the Yard Theatre, 7-11 January 2019 A conference at RCSSD, 11-12 January 2019 A website www.newplaysfromeurope.com
Start Year 2018
 
Description Black Tenderness post-show talk 
Form Of Engagement Activity A talk or presentation
Part Of Official Scheme? No
Geographic Reach Regional
Primary Audience Professional Practitioners
Results and Impact 40 audience members attended this post-show talk, which generated interesting discussions and sparked interest in the project. As a result, I was contacted by several practitioners to discuss the project.
Year(s) Of Engagement Activity 2016
URL http://www.translatingtheatre.com/videoarchive/black-tenderness-post-show-discussion/
 
Description Gliwice Hamlet at the V&A Performance Festival 
Form Of Engagement Activity A talk or presentation
Part Of Official Scheme? No
Geographic Reach National
Primary Audience Public/other audiences
Results and Impact About 55 people attended the performance and post-show talk at the V&A Performance Festival in April 2017. The performance further investigated the themes explored by the project, and the post-show discussion was intended to engage the public with our research. As a result, two theatre producers got interested in the performance and are still in contact with the creative team about the possibility of developing the project as a full-blown production.
Year(s) Of Engagement Activity 2017
URL https://www.vam.ac.uk/event/vBL4nQBG/translating-theatre-gliwice-hamlet-in-london
 
Description Gliwice Hamlet post-show talk 
Form Of Engagement Activity A talk or presentation
Part Of Official Scheme? No
Geographic Reach Regional
Primary Audience Professional Practitioners
Results and Impact About 40 people attended the post-show talk, which generated lively conversations and sparked further interest in the project. As a result, I was contacted by theatre students and practitioners to discuss further involvement in the project.
Year(s) Of Engagement Activity 2016
URL http://www.translatingtheatre.com/videoarchive/gliwice-hamlet-post-show-discussion/
 
Description The Snakes post-show talk 
Form Of Engagement Activity A talk or presentation
Part Of Official Scheme? No
Geographic Reach Regional
Primary Audience Professional Practitioners
Results and Impact About 40 people attended the post-show discussion, which generated further interest in the project and a lively discussion. As a result, I was contacted by several students and practitioners to further discuss the project.
Year(s) Of Engagement Activity 2016
URL http://www.translatingtheatre.com/videoarchive/interview-with-daniel-goldman/
 
Description Three articles in Exeunt Magazine about the project 
Form Of Engagement Activity A magazine, newsletter or online publication
Part Of Official Scheme? No
Geographic Reach International
Primary Audience Professional Practitioners
Results and Impact We commissioned three theatre critics to write responses to the practice-as-research workshops that preceded the performance presentations at the Gate Theatre. These articles appeared on the most well-read internet-based theatre magazine in the UK, which also has an international readership.
Year(s) Of Engagement Activity 2016
URL http://www.translatingtheatre.com/2016/07/26/translating-theatre-features-in-exeunt-magazine/
 
Description Translating Theatre Documentary 
Form Of Engagement Activity A broadcast e.g. TV/radio/film/podcast (other than news/press)
Part Of Official Scheme? No
Geographic Reach International
Primary Audience Postgraduate students
Results and Impact This short film documents the Practice as Research phase of Dr Margherita Laera's AHRC Leadership Fellowship "Translation, Adaptation, Otherness", which addresses the ideological and ethical infrastructure of translation and its consequences. The project explores how we can minimise the inherent domesticating effect that turning a text from a "foreign" to a "familiar" language has on the source's cultural difference, and how we can counteract ethnocentric practices in translation for the stage. In the summer of 2016, the project commissioned three translations and staged readings of contemporary plays from Spain, France and Poland: Denise Despeyroux's "Black Tenderness", Marie NDiaye's "The Snakes" and Piotr Lachmann's "Gliwice Hamlet". The film includes interviews, rehearsal and performance footage from the three processes. For more information see www.translatingtheatre.com. Filmed and edited by Dominic Hicks. This film contributed to raising the profile of the project and was shown at various international institutions. It also contributed to achieving keynote speaker invitations for myself.
Year(s) Of Engagement Activity 2016,2017,2018
URL http://www.translatingtheatre.com/documentary
 
Description Translating Theatre Symposium 
Form Of Engagement Activity Participation in an activity, workshop or similar
Part Of Official Scheme? No
Geographic Reach International
Primary Audience Professional Practitioners
Results and Impact The Translating Theatre academic symposium was part of our engagement strategy with theatre and literary translation professionals. The conference was attended by 105 people and we had a waiting list of over 50 people who could not attend for lack of space. The conference attracted academics, translators and industry professionals such as literary managers and theatre directors. I made connections with international scholars and raised the profile of the project. We made the main papers and panel discussion available on YouTube to disseminated the findings of the conference on the University of Kent's School of Arts YouTube Channel, see https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=9EuPxmD5bp0&list=PL8HW-qBTvUWyk1rSjXaa1cPwC55liacHE
Year(s) Of Engagement Activity 2016
URL http://www.translatingtheatre.com/symposium/
 
Description Translating Theatre Website and Archive 
Form Of Engagement Activity Engagement focused website, blog or social media channel
Part Of Official Scheme? No
Geographic Reach International
Primary Audience Professional Practitioners
Results and Impact We created a website for the project, specifically focusing on the practice-as-research performances and other public engagement activities. The website collects images, texts and an archive of performance extracts, post-show talks, interviews with the creative team, and a documentary. The website gives a sense of the activities we carried out and engages the public with the issues we explored. As a result of visiting this website, a number of scholars contacted me to invite me to speak at their institutions. Our website enjoys a growing audience: we attract around 200 views on a monthly basis, with peaks of 70-80 unique visitors on days in which we produce content on social media or on other platforms.
Year(s) Of Engagement Activity 2016,2017,2018
URL http://www.translatingtheatre.com