New Translations of International Drama – Hungary, Ukraine, Poland

Friday, 26.05.2023, English Theatre Berlin

Kartonpapa, directed by: István Tasnádi, premiere: 13.06.2021 at theSzkéné Theater,
from left: Ádám Varga, Dorottya Udvaros, Péter Scherer, photo: Orsi Torják.

Hungary: Trapped in the Patriarchy

István Tasnádi: Kartonpapa
Translated from the Hungarian by Marianne Behrmann

Followed by a panel discussion with the playwright and translator
Dramaturgy: Marianna Behrmann
Intepreted by: Christina Kunze

István Tasnádi’s black comedy examines what happens when a family loses its patriarch. Eva has recently lost her beloved husband, Miklos, and now cannot cope with her new situation and newfound freedom. Miklos was in charge of the family until his death; Eva didn’t have to make her own decisions, which she finds very difficult now. Even the word freedom itself frightens to her. She can’t come to terms with her grief and simply pretends that he’s still alive. So she cuts her spouse out of cardboard and takes the “cardboard dad” (Kartonpapa) with her when she goes to visit family with her adult son. The play shows the deep wounds caused by patriarchal structures in family structures and the damage that authoritarian power relationships also leave behind in society as a whole.

Free entrance, but please register here.

Ukraine: Journey Through a Country Torn Apart

Anastasiia Kosodii: Timetraveller’s Guide to Donbas
Translated from the Ukrainian by Lydia Nagel

Followed by a panel discussion with the playwright and translator
Dramaturgy: Lydia Nagel
Chaired by: Hannes Becker

Two time travellers from the year 2036 arrive in the year 2013 in search of the origins of the war in the Donbas. In her surreal road movie, Anastasiia Kosodii describes a journey through a country torn apart. The play was created for the project “Krieg im Frieden” at the International Dramatiker:innenlabor in Berlin.

Free entrance, but please register here.

Poland: A Bitter Pandemic Commedia dell’Arte

Ishbel Szatrawska: Totentanz. Schwarze Nacht, schwarzer Tod
Translated from the Polish by Andreas Volk

Followed by a panel discussion with the playwright and translator
Dramaturgy: Andreas Volk
Chaired by: Iwona Uberman
Interpreted by: Agnieszka Grzybkowska

This play was in the final selection of the prestigious Drama Prize of the city of Gdynia and also on the shortlist of the Berlin Theatertreffen Stückemarkt (2022). March 2020 in Bergamo: in the middle of the lockdown in the early stages of the pandemic, Francesca and Luca, a middle class couple from the fashion and television industry, are giving a lavish dinner for their neighbours. The social drama gradually devolves from a commedia dell’arte into an opera, then a television drama, and in the end takes on fantastical overtones. The entire story is embedded in a funeral mass and is full of erudite allusions to Italian history, society and culture (Petrarch, Boccaccio, Pasolini). Two invisible plagues hover over the stage like the sword of Damocles: the corona virus dances a merry dance with the virus of fascism.

Free entrance, but please register here.

The staged readings on Friday, 26.05.2023 are directed by: Daniel Brunet

Performed by: Mareile Metzner, Patrick Khatami, Friederike Pöschel, Lutz Wessel

Each event lasts around 90 minutes and there will be breaks between them. Back to main page.

István Tasnádi is a writer, director and theatre scholar. He has been publishing poetry and plays regularly since 1992. He was a co-founder and dramaturge at the Bárka Theater in Budapest before beginning his work as resident playwright and artistic co-director at the Krétakör Theater in 2001. His literary work includes more than thirty plays and scripts, including, for example, Nexxt – Frau Plastic Chicken Show (directed by Árpád Schilling), which was invited to the Festival d’Avignon. In 1999, István Tasnádi’s best-known play, Staatsfeind Kohlhaas, was awarded the prize for the best young Hungarian drama. His works are performed in many European countries, Russia and the USA.

Photo: Ákos Túry
Photo: Anett Kállai-Tóth

Marianne Behrmann is a Hungarian German studies scholar, German as a foreign language teacher, translator and publisher. Member of Drama Panorama: Forum für Übersetzung und Theater e.V., Berlin. In 2022, a novel by the Hungarian actor Mihály Ozsgyáni: Mein Schleier rutschte ein wenig zur Seite was published in her translation by the Frankfurter Ruhland Verlag.

She also translates novels by best-selling Swiss author Damaris Kofmehl into Hungarian, as well as plays published by Hofmann-Paul, Deutscher Theaterverlag and Henschel Schauspiel. She is currently working on an anthology of new Hungarian drama.

Photo: Ezra Rotthoff

Anastasiia Kosodii is a playwright, director and co-founder of the Theatre of Playwrights in Kyiv. Her plays, such as Was ist jüdische Musik (original: Що таке єврейська музика) and Acht kurze Kompositionen über das Leben der Ukrainer:innen für das westliche Publikum (original: Вісім коротких композицій про життя українців для західної аудиторії), have been performed in many theatres in Ukraine and have been performed and staged in many other countries. In 2022, she organised the series of readings Vom Krieg – Ukrainische Dramatiker:innen erzählen vom Leben während der Invasion durch Russland. She is writer in residence for 2022/23 at the Nationaltheater Mannheim, where her news play Wie man mit Toten spricht (original: Як говорити з мертвими) premiered in April 2023.

Lydia Nagel is a Slavic languages and cultural studies scholar and has been translating Ukrainian drama into German continuously for more than ten years. She is a founding member of Drama Panorama and translit e. V. as well as a member of the VdÜ. She has translated many plays from various Slavic languages into German and regularly recommends plays to publishers, theatres and festivals. Since 2015, she has also facilitated workshops on literary and theatre translation. In 2022, she was co-artistic director of the events Multilingualism in Theatre and European Drama from Poland and the Ukraine as part of the Drama Panorama project panorama#2: übertheaterübersetzen.

Photo: Christina Kurby

Photo: Izabella Górska

Ishbel Szatrawska is a Polish playwright and theatre studies scholar. In December 2019, she debuted with the play Objects in Mirror Are Closer Than They Appear in the e-anthology Nasz głos, published by the Stary Teatr in Kraków. She has published further dramas in the theatre journal DialogHunt [original: Polowanie] (no. 4/2020), Totentanz. Schwarze Nacht, schwarzer Tod [original: Totentanz. Czarna noc, czarna śmierć] (no. 2/2021).

In 2020, she was awarded an artist’s scholarship from the city of Kraków, as a result of which she wrote the play Katerina is Missing [original: Kateriny brak]. She was also winner of the scholarship competition DRAMATOPISANIE (2021), organised by the Zbigniew Raszewski Institute for Theatre. During this scholarship, she wrote the play Freelance Snipers [original: Wolny strzelec] about the war in in Iraq and the fall of Saddam Hussein in 2003. Her play The Life and Death of Hersh Libkin from Sacramento, California [original: Żywot i śmierć pana Hersha Libkina z Sacramento w stanie Kalifornia] was selected by Eurodram – European Network for Drama in Translation in the Polish selection.

Andreas Volk studied Slavic languages and comparative central European studies in Berlin and Frankfurt (Oder). From 2009 to 2011, he was an assistant researcher at the Collegium Polonicum in Słubice. Co-founder of the German-Polish translation yearbook “OderÜbersetzen”. Editor of the German-Polish-Ukrainian literary journal “radar” (2009-2016). Translator of contemporary Polish drama, including: Demirski, Górnicka, Lupa, Pałyga, Sikorska-Miszczuk, Słobodzianek, Szatrawska, Warlikowski. In 2013, he was awarded the ZAiKS translator’s prize and in 2022 the Karl Dedecius prize.

Photo: Andrzej Walkusz

Artistic directors: Anna Galt, Charlotte Bomy and Barbora Schnelle
Production: Tine Elbel
PR: Augustin PR

This three-day festival of readings is the continuation of the series of events PANORAMA #1 and PANORAMA #2: ÜBERTHEATERÜBERSETZEN, which Drama Panorama: Forum für Übersetzung und Theater e. V. organised in 2021 and 2022,
generously funded by the Deutscher Übersetzerfonds.

Funded by the Deutscher Übersetzerfonds and the Federal Government Commissioner for Culture and the Media as part of the NEUSTART KULTUR programme. The translation of the Czech play “Sorex” by Tomáš Ráliš was funded by the Academy of Performing Arts in Prague

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