Margherita Laera: guest lecturer series at Lille

Dear colleagues,  

we are pleased to announce a series of conferences, roundtables and workshops on multilingualism on stage with Dr Margherita Laera, who is our guest lecturer at Université de Lille. Programme and contact below!
Kind regards,  

Claire Hélie and Hélène Lecossois


Dr Margherita Laera is a Senior Lecturer in Drama and Theatre at the University of Kent, Canterbury, where she is co-Director of the European Theatre Research Network. Margherita is the Online Editor of Theatre Topics and Theatre Journal. She has published widely on Italian theatre, theatre translation and adaptation in edited collections and scholarly journals, such as Contemporary Theatre ReviewModern Drama and Performance Research. She is the author of the book Theatre & Translation (Red Globe Press, 2019) and of Reaching Athens: Community, Democracy and Other Mythologies in Adaptations of Greek Tragedy (Peter Lang, 2013). Margherita edited Theatre and Adaptation: Return, Rewrite, Repeat (Bloomsbury, 2014) and London: Brexit Stage Left (Cue Press, 2019). She has recently completed an AHRC Leadership Fellowship with a project entitled ‘Translation, Adaptation, Otherness’ (2016–19), for which she received the TaPRA Early Career Research Prize in 2018. Her current research is about multilingual theatre; contemporary theatre translation practices in the European Union; and engaging secondary school students with plays in translation. She regularly translates plays from English to Italian and vice versa. 

Monday 19 April 2021 

2.00–4.30 Multilingual Theatre in Practice: A Conversation and a Workshop, with Anne Bérélowitch. Co-organised with RADAC, Recherches sur les Arts Dramatiques Anglophones Contemporains 

Multilingual theatre is both a marginal practice and one of the fastest growing trends of contemporary European performance. However, it is still an under-researched area in our discipline. In 2008, Turkish-German director Shermin Langhoff popularised the genre of ‘postmigrant theatre’, a new kind of performance by second and third generations meant to rewrite narratives about migrants, often featuring multiple languages. Since then, this genre has not only shaken the German theatre world. The future of European societies demands urgent collective renegotiations of identities to overcome paradigms of marginalisation that emerge from ignoring migration as a fact. But as dominant European practices testify, the theatre is still complicit in perpetuating monolingual, monocultural, ethnocentric systems on stage and within training settings, with performers being routinely marginalised on the basis of their mother tongue/accent. In this research event, Dr Laera will briefly discuss her past research on multilingual theatre in a British context to then move on to a conversation with director Anne Bérélowitch of Compagnie InstantMix, who specialises in the multilingual theatre genre. The chat will be followed by a 90-minute practical workshop with Anne Bérélowitch open to a maximum of 20 participants. 

Anne will involve participants in simple improvisation and writing exercises designed to encourage using a variety of languages in performance, demonstrating how these practices can be used in the development of full length plays or shows.  

5.00-6.00 Margherita Laera Q&A – in collaboration with the University Library  

Dr Laera will be in conversation with Prof. Hélène Lecossois and Dr. Claire Hélie. Margherita’s books Theatre & Translation (Red Globe Press, 2019) and Reaching Athens: Community, Democracy and Other Mythologies in Adaptations of Greek Tragedy (Peter Lang, 2013), her forthcoming book, Playwriting Europe (Routledge, 2022), as well as her role as editor will be discussed. The conversation will be followed by a virtual tour of the exhibition on multilingual theatre at the BUSHS and talk with the curators. 

Thursday 22 April 2021 

4.30-6.30pm French time. Seminaire Politique de la Littérature CECILLE 

Be My Guest? Practicing Reciprocal Hospitality Through Theatre Translation 

This paper mobilises the notion of hospitality as a metaphor to establish theatre translation as an ethical and political practice that can contribute to a more inclusive and equal world on and off our stages. I draw a comparison between how people welcome guests, how nations host migrants and refugees, and how theatre-makers engage with translated plays. Evaluating models of cultural interaction and hospitality, I discuss the assimilationist, communitarian, and cosmopolitan approaches. I then draw on Derrida’s understanding of hospitality as an aporia: one can only welcome guests if one is the owner of the house; however, true, unconditional hospitality would undermine the distinction between self and other, between what is mine and what is yours. Returning more specifically how to host foreign plays, I explore the notion of ‘creolization’ – borrowed from social sciences – as a possible metaphor for a kind of hospitality that is reciprocal, and where no one can claim to be the exclusive owner of the house. I argue that when staging a play in translation, practitioners do not only act as hosts of a foreign text, but also inhabit it as guests and are hosted by it. I propose that the practice of reciprocal hospitality, as constitutive of stage translation, is a powerful reminder that we are always already made of the stories of others.


To receive the Zoom link, please contact 

Friday 23 April 2021 

3.00-4.00 Fabulamundi Workbook: Contemporary Playwriting and Theatre Translation Practices in Europe 

In 2018, Dr Laera was commissioned by the EU-funded network, Fabulamundi: Playwriting Europe Beyond Borders, to write a report assessing current practices, perceptions and norms in the field of contemporary playwriting and the translation of contemporary plays in nine different European countries: Austria, Czech Republic, France, Germany, Italy, Poland, Romania, Spain and the U.K. The report, published in December 2020  presents qualitative and quantitative data gathered on how each theatre culture supports living dramatists, how it organises its education system, what conventions drive the production and translation of contemporary plays, and what perceptions are held by gatekeepers, theatre-makers and other cultural operators about the theatre system in which they work. Drawing on the existing network of partners, venues, playwrights, translators, directors and performers working with the Fabulamundi network, this research maps different national ecologies, structures and traditions enabling the production and mobility of plays through the use of questionnaires and one-to-one interviews with key stakeholders in each context. It enables professionals working in the field to evaluate and compare cultural practices and institutional habits in the field, concluding with a list of best practices for a sustainable field. In this talk, Dr Laera will present a summary of her research findings. 

4.00-5.30 Table Ronde on Theatre Translation, chaired by Clare Finburgh Delijani (Goldsmiths) 

In this round table, speakers will respond to Dr Laera’s presentation by further investigating the different practices that emerge from the Fabulamundi report. Prof. Clare Finburgh Delijani will lead this discussion with a particular focus around the ethics and politics of theatre translation. Dr Laera and Prof Finburgh Delijani are joined by Dr Almiro Andrade (East 15), Dr Camilla Cederna (Lille), and Dr Corinne Oster (Lille).  

Clare Finburgh Delijani is a teacher and researcher in the Department of Theatre and Performance at Goldsmiths, University of London. She has written and edited many books and articles on French, Francophone and UK theatre. Across her publications she addresses some of the most pressing political and social issues of the modern world: the ecological crisis, global conflict, and migrant and post-migrant identities and communities. Her most recent book project examines how contemporary theatre in France looks back at histories of colonialism in Africa, the Caribbean and South East Asia, better to understand identity, community and nation today. Her publications include a special issue of Théâtre/Public on the Situationist International (2019), The Great Stage Directors: Littlewood, Planchon, Strehler (2018, with Peter Boenisch), Watching War on the Twenty-First-Century Stage: Spectacles of Conflict (2017), Rethinking the Theatre of the Absurd: Ecology, the Environment and the Greening of the Modern Stage (2015, with Carl Lavery) and Jean Genet (2012, with David Bradby). She is the co-founder and current Secretary General of the European Association for the Study of Theatre and Performance

 In conversation with author and Goldsmiths Theatre and Performance alumnus Dennis Kelly. 

 A short talk about my most recent book (out now in paperback): « Why Watch War in the Theatre? » 

 Deputy Director of the Goldsmiths Centre for Comparative Literature 

Dr. ALMIRO ANDRADE is a Black Latinx actor, director, playwright, dramaturg and theatre translator with a PhD in Translation of Brazilian Contemporary Drama through devising for performance at King’s College London. His approach sees all stages of theatre-making as an act of translation and his practice champions the production of international pieces in the UK since 2008. Current works include the first English translation of Namibia, Não! by Aldri Anunciação currently in adaptationfor the silver screen with the title Executive Order(Medida Provisória); a gender-bending adaptation of The Blind One and The Mad One by Cláudia Barral produced by [Foreign Affairs] Theatre publushed by Inti Press in partnership with Out of the Wings Collective; and also recently published three new translations of the Brazilian canonic playwright within Nelson Rodrigues – Selected Plays, by Bloomsburry/Oberon Books. 


« Executive Order (2020) – IMDb » 

« The Blind One and the Mad One Cláudia Barral Translated by Almiro Andrade | Inti Press » 

« Nelson Rodrigues: Selected Plays: Wedding Dress; Waltz No. 6; All Nudity Will Punished; Forgive Me for Your Betrayal; Family Portraits; Black Angel; Seven Little Kitties (Oberon Modern Playwrights) Nelson Rodrigues: Oberon Books » 

Camilla Maria Cederna (, maître de conférences HDR (Habilitée à Diriger les Recherches), en langue, littérature et civilisation italiennes à l’Université Lille. Ma recherche porte sur les transferts culturels, la circulation du théâtre italien à l’époque moderne et contemporaine, la traduction et le dialogue entre les littératures et les cultures dans l’espace méditerranéen. Je suis responsable du LAI (Laboratoire Associé International), « L’écriture de l’exil au féminin. Le dialogue entre les langues, les cultures et les idées, dans l’espace européen et méditerranéen (XIXe-XXIe siècles)», en collaboration avec l’Université de Rome, La Sapienza (2018-2022). Je participe également aux projets internationaux : ARPREGO (Archives du Théâtre Prégoldonien); et «Historiographie théâtrale comparée à l’époque moderne» ELCI – OBVIL ( 

Quelques publications : 

·         « Elisa Chimenti (Naples, 1883-Tanger, 1969) : écrivaine et philosophe enragée, entre transgression et médiation » dans Elsa Chaarani, Laurence Denooz et Sylvie Thiéblemont-Dollet (dir.), Plein feux sur les femmes (in)visibles, Nancy, Presses universitaires de Lorraine, 2021, coll.  » VisMI Visibilité, Médiatisation, Interculturalité « , p. 529-544. 

·         La Fausse coquette (1694) de Louis Biancolelli (édition critique par C. Cederna, Biblioteca Pregoldoniana, lineadacqua edizioni, 2018), en ligne ( 

·         La nation au théâtre/un théâtre pour la nation, (sus la direction de Camilla Cederna et Vincenza Perdichizzi), Edizioni dell’Orso, Alessandria, 2015, pp. 1-142. 

·         Esilio di voci/ Voix d’exil, ATI, Brescia, 2016, 145 p. 

·         Traduzioni, adattamenti, adozioni : tradurre il teatro del Sei Settecento oggi Thema/Open Access Research Journal for Theatre, Music, Arts (sousla direction de Camilla M. Cederna), vol. 3, N° 1-2, 2014, pp. 1-125. 

·         Le théâtre italien en France au XVIIIe siècle : entre attraction et dénégation (sous la direction de Camilla M.  Cederna), Editions du conseil scientifique de l’Université de Lille 3, CEGES, Lille 2012, pp. 9-166. 


·         Antonia Pozzi, Une vie irrémédiable. Poèmes, écrits, édition établie par Matteo Mario Vecchio, traduit de l’italien par Camilla Maria Cederna, Lille, Editions Laborintus, 2018. 

·         Mohamed Moksidi, Poesie, traduit avec l’auteur de l’arabe en italien, Levania, n°. 8, décembre 2018, Napoli, Giannini Editore, p. 12-17. 

·         Roland Barthes, L’avventura semiologica, Einaudi, Torino, 1991. 

·         Gérard Genette, Soglie, Einaudi, Torino, 1989. 

     Corinne Oster, agrégée d’anglais, est maître de conférences en traduction et traductologie à l’université de Lille où elle enseigne au sein du Master MéLexTra (Métiers du Lexique et de la Traduction). Elle est titulaire d’un Ph.D. en littérature comparée obtenu en 2003 à l’University of Massachusetts Amherst (USA). Ses recherches portent sur les aspects politiques et culturels de la traduction, plus particulièrement sur les questions de genre et de traduction, ainsi que sur les questions de traduction audiovisuelle. Elle a co-édité avec Ronald Jenn Territoires de la traduction (Artois Presses Université, 2014) et avec Giuditta Caliendo Traduire la criminalité (Septentrion, 2020) et a publié plusieurs articles portant sur la traduction féministe et l’adaptation culturelle au cinéma. 

NB: all the events (except for the workshop with Anne Berelowitch on Monday) are free, open and online (Zoom) 

Please contact Claire Hélie at Université de Lille for more details and link