During this seminar, Joseph Megel and Henning Bochert, theater practitioners from both sides of the Atlantic, will work with you to explore the question: How do current societal discourses reflect in U.S. drama, how do contemporary German plays contribute to their own discourse, and how does translation (both German to English and English to German) communicate them?
Together with a number of dominating issues, we would like to introduce a few playwrights who give them a voice on U.S. stages. We will not only read and discuss the respective plays but also look into possibilities to translate them into German. Translation will, given Henning’s focus, appear time and again through the lessons. We will discuss aspects of translations as art in itself – how does one translate cultural understanding? Does the translator adapt a play for its new audience? Particularly, we will be discussing the challenges in the translation of two plays, one German text that will be made available in English (Özlem Özgül Dündar’s An Grenzen) and one American text that will be translated into German (Jim Grimsley’s Cascade). The texts will wrestle with contemporary issues that will resonate both in the United States and in Germany.
Moreover, we will bring the HU students together with students of German from Chapel Hill’s University of North Carolina (UNC), who will be focusing on drama and translation during that semester – an excellent opportunity for both sides to connect. The two classes will be able to work together and study how translation elevates cross-cultural understanding. A cross-cultural collaborative creative project will be assigned.
- Hilary Bettis, The Ghosts of Lote Bravo (Migration)
- Jim Grimsley, Cascade (Ecology/Climate/Migration)
- Jeremy O. Harris, Slave Play (Racism/Slavery)
- Jackie Sibblies Drury, We Are Proud To Present (Slavery)
- Joseph Megel and Elisabeth Lewis Corley, Black Pioneer Project (Racism/History/Democracy)
- Doug Wright, I Am My Own Wife (Gender/Identity)
- Heidi Schreck, What the Constitution Means To Me (Democracy)
- Anna Deavere Smith, Twilight Los Angeles 1992 (Racism/History)
- Özlem Özgül Dündar, An Grenzen
- This If we cannot hold this seminar in presence, we will switch to an online mode, meet outside etc.
- course requires sound knowledge of German
has been writing, producing, and translating texts for the stage as well as organising events to present international drama or discuss it. His credits include plays by Dead Centre, Carlos Murillo, Dawn King, Eve Leigh, and George Brant. As a dramaturg, he was part of mainly international productions. Bochert is a member of Drama Panorama: Forum for Translation and Theater e. V., a platform for theatre translators, and of raum4 - netzwerk für künstlerische alltagsbewältigung e. v., a producing organisation. He runs his own translation agency Bochert Translations. www.henningbochert.de
is Artist in Residence and Teaching Professor in Performance Studies in the Department of Communication at The University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill where for the past 14 years he has run the Process Series: New Works in Development. He is currently Artistic Director of StreetSigns Center for Literature and Performance and recently directed Temples of Lung and Air at PlayMakers Repertory Company in Chapel Hill and Detroit Public Theater. Selected Off-Broadway and Off-Off Broadway credits include: Howard L. Craft’s Freight: The Five Incarnations of Abel Green for the New Federal Theater at The Castillo Theatre (Off-Broadway) and for StreetSigns (at HERE Art Center - Off-Off Broadway), (NY Times Critics Pick); The Working Project for the Working Theater (Off-Broadway); and Guillermo Reyes’s Men on the Verge of a His-panic Breakdown (Off-Broadway | Outer Circle Critics Award). He directed the same play in Los Angeles (Ovation Award) and elsewhere.