Another Journey in Translation

It’s great when a film and a poem gain another life through a translation project. I have been working with three talented students, two Italian, one English, at Leicester University and their lecturer, Dr Anna Milsom, to translate my poem ‘Chasing the Sun’ into Italian.  The process was fascinating, not least listening to the discussions between the three translators about particular words and phrases in my poem. The impetus behind this translation project was a request from an Italian student. Giorgio (I don’t know his surname) had seen the English version of the film-poem on filmmaker Keith Allott’s Vimeo site. He liked it and asked if we could possibly arrange for an Italian translation so that it could be screened at the Langue Festival Della Poesiadi San Lorenzo (Festival of Language and Poetry) in Rome.

    We had about three months to complete the project, deciding on a spoken soundtrack rather than subtitles, and to include the three people who had worked the hardest on it: Laura A, Laura S and Marta. Thanks also to Guilia Marselli who contributed at the beginning. The hardest challenge was timing each section to fit with specific parts of the film and to make sure that the whole thing was more or less the same length as the English version. Keith Allott did a superb job with the final edits. Thank you also to the excellent recording facilities and support at Leicester University.

There is a write-up on the Leicester University site here.



The final product is here. The link to the original film is below. I hope you agree that the blending of the three different voices is particularly effective.

Keith wrote the following on his social media pages:

” We are delighted to announce that our short poetry film ‘Chasing the Sun’ will be screened as part of the official selection at the Langue Festival Della Poesiadi San Lorenzo (Festival of Language and Poetry) in Rome on Saturday.

On the winter solstice in 2013, Poet Pam Thompson and I walked around Leicester gathering images for Pam to write to. The resuting poem was then edited to the images and the music of Dave Dhonau was added to the film to complete it.

The festival asked for the film to be included and thanks to the translation work and VO recording of Laura Albertini, Laura Stone and Marta Iachella we were able to provide an Italian version ‘Inseguendo il sole’.

Congratulations to all involved especially Pam who instigated and co-ordinated the whole creative process.

You can check the original film with Pam’s recording here:

The festival website is here:   ”

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