Translation and Intercultural Studies

Seminar Series – Laurence Strangio & Margherita Peluso

Translating on the floor: reimagining contemporary Italian texts through the performer’s body. Theatrical translation is an active process that involves its creators in a dynamic and volatile relationship that embodies language and tests interpretation in a three dimensional context.

Laurence Strangio & Margherita Peluso

Date/Time: Thu 28 Aug / 2:00 pm

Location: Room E561 Menzies Building 11

In our recent work with contemporary Italian theatre texts we have developed a process of ‘on-the’floor’ bilingual translation which directly thrusts the practice from page to stage. Over the past six months we have translated and presented onstage “Lo Stupro” and “La Medea” (by Franca Rame and Dario Fo) and “Le Beatrici” (a series of female monologues by Stefano Benni) to enthusiastic acclaim. These texts – both tragic and comic – were approached in a visceral and intuitive manner that responded to its local audience and current performative context while rigorously examining the significance of the source material. This seminar will discuss how these projects were approached and the vocal, aural, physical, literal, cultural and rhythmic considerations involved in translating these works for the Australian stage. If translation is an act of betrayal with the best of intentions then theatrical translation takes that well-intentioned false step with fully embodied commitment.

Laurence Strangio (director) and Margherita Peluso (performer) are a talented theatrical team who have translated and created several contemporary Italian theatre works in Melbourne including “La Medea/Lo Stupro” (Franca Rame & Dario Fo) and “Le Beatrici” (Stefano Benni). They first worked together on “The Restoration of Adelaide Ristori” at La Mama in 2012. Laurence is well known as a director and adaptor of classic and contemporary works including “Six characters in search of an author…”, “The Good Person of Szechuan” and “alias Grace” (after the novel by Margaret Atwood). He has taught and directed at Deakin University, Monash University and the Victorian College of the Arts. Margherita is an Italian bilingual performer who has trained and performed in Italy and the United States. She arrived in Melbourne in 2012 where her performances include “Il berretto a sonagli” and “La Morsa/Cecé” as well as regular performances with the Lloyd Jones Ensemble at La Mama and Commedia dell’Arte presentations with “Make a Scene”.