With not one but two literary festivals, November has been a busy and exciting month for the CELA artists and partners. Looking back on Pisa Book Festival in Pisa, Italy.
Pisa Book Festival is one of the largest and most dynamic book festivals in Italy and is dedicated to Italian independent publishing houses. Every Autumn, this time from 9 until 11 November, it brings together publishers, writers, translators, illustrators, Italian and foreign artists. CELA was present at the book fair, on stage, during various workshops and behind the scenes, connecting writers and translators, journalists and students and literary professionals and readers.
Translation on stage
The first day, Friday 9 November, the CELA stage performances kicked off with our first group of writer-translator duo’s at 6 in the evening. Writer Andrei Crăciun (Romania) and translator Maria Alampi, writer Joost Oomen (Netherlands) and translator Antonio De Sortis, and writer Mariana Torres (Spain) and translator Valeria Parlato took the stage with literary professional Beatrice Bellina, writer Vanni Santoni and interviewer Luca Murphy. Click here to see a video of Joost and Antonio performing!
The second day, on Saturday 8 November at 4 in the afternoon, CELA took translation to the stage again with three new duo’s: writer Maud Vanhauwaert (Belgium) and translator Antonio De Sortis, writer José Gardeazabal (Portugal) and translator Francesca Leotta and writer Roberto Osa (Spain) and translator Valeria Parlato took the stage with literary professional Beatrice Bellina, writer Luca Ricci and interviewer Luca Murphy.
The festival kicked off on Friday morning, the 9th of November with two consecutive masterclasses: Italian writer Sebastiano Mondadori hosted two open creative writing workshop classes together with CELA for the Pisa Book Festival public. He explored lessons we can learn from literary classics, and offered participants various exercises, techniques and secrets for creative writing. On the final day of the festival, Sunday 10 november, another CELA masterclass took place. Alberto Mario Banti, historian and teacher of Italian at Pisa University, gave a lecture on how to communicate stories in the broadest sense possible: from scientific research to books and in the media. The masterclass rooms were full house!
This year, the festival drew special attention to Spain and its publishing industry for the Guest of Honor Country programme with special events dedicated to the literature of the country. The Spanish division of CELA was represented by writers Mariana Torres and Roberto Osa. They held a translation workshop called ‘I will give you an abyss’, on translating the poetry of Roberto Bolaño on Friday afternoon, and you could meet them in the video room on Saturday morning.
Besides providing masterclasses, workshops and stage presentations, we were also Connecting Emerging Literary Artists behind the scenes. Noortje Kessels and Manouk Miltenburg represented the project at the book fair, and there were meetings and interviews between CELA participants and journalists in the press room:
To conclude, senior journalist Riccardo Michelucci wrote about the CELA stage presentation in Italian newspaper Avvenire:
'The idea of culture as a glue between the people of Europe has been perfectly embodied by the first public appearance of the first literary talent development project at a European level.
Thank you so much Pisa Book Festival, all the writers and translators for providing and taking the stage at the second stop of our festivaltour. Here’s to being each other’s voice.