September 28, 2016

Collaborative Theatre in Translation

OCF Grant supports collaboration between Portland Experimental Theatre Ensemble and translator Stepan Simek, Professor of Theatre.

Two members of the Lewis & Clark faculty, Assistant Professor of Theatre Rebecca Lingafelter and Professor of Theatre Štĕpán Šimek, are part of a team that was recently awarded a $77,000  Creative Heights Program grant from the Oregon Community Foundation. This funding will support a collaboration between Portland Experimental Theatre Ensemble (PETE) and translator Stepan Šimek to produce an anthology of new English language translations of several major works by Russian playwright Anton Chekhov: Uncle Vanya, The Cherry Orchard, and The Seagull; one of these cooperative, interpretive translations, Uncle Vanya, will be fully staged in January 2018. Members of PETE (Jacob Coleman, Rebecca Lingafelter, Cristi Miles, and Amber Whitehall) will serve as producers, performers, directors and co-creators of these texts while Šimek will serve as a translator and co-creator of the works.

As noted in their proposal, this highly collaborative work will engage “a whole new approach to the art of dramatic translation…The translations, production, and detailing of process will impact not only how Chekhov is understood in contemporary American theatre, but also the understanding of dramatic translation as an act of collaboration. This production and publication will be a boon for all artists involved, impact the local artistic community, and potentially shine a national light on Oregon theatre.” Founded in 2011, PETE is collaborative ensemble of theatre artists who “develop original ensemble-generated pieces and produce innovative interpretations of classical text.” Lingafelter is a Founding Member and Co-Artistic Director of PETE. This new OCF-funded project will build on a 2014 collaboration when PETE produced a fabulous new English translation of The Three Sisters with Šimek.

More information is available in the Oregon Community Foundation announcement

September 2016