Translator from German and French
(ATA-certified Ger > Eng)

Author of short play "Dad's Guns"
included in
24 Gun Control Plays cover
 24 Gun Control Plays, ed. Caridad Svich and Zac Kline
Read more

received from
PEN Translation Fund
Howard Foundation
Ledig House International Writers Residency
Banff International Literary Translation Centre
Consulate General of Switzerland
Austrian Cultural Forum

Neil Blackadder

Translation of drama and prose from German and French

Specializing in translating contemporary theatre

Representation: Antje Oegel International


Staged reading of my translation of Alpenvorland by Thomas Arzt, to be presented by hotINK at the Lark, New York, June 2014.

Staged readings of living. under glass [wohnen. unter glas] by Ewald Palmetshofer: International Voices Project, Chicago, April 7, 2014, and at Red Tape Theatre, Feb. 2014.

hamlet is dead. no gravity [hamlet ist tot. keine schwerkraft] by Ewald Palmetshofer: US premiere at Red Tape Theatre, Chicago, directed by Seth Bockley, Jan. 27 - Feb. 22, 2014.

Mani Dani TO

Trailer video; 'behind the curtains' video.  Reviewed in Chicago Tribune, The Reader, Newcity Stage, Time Out, and Windy City Times.

TF35 Nick Hern cover Hare and Blanca SNP thumbnail

Other recent highlights

Participant, inaugural Translation Lab at Writers Omi at Ledig House, New York, November 2012, collaborating with  Ewald Palmetshofer on translations of wohnen. unter glas and räuber.schuldengenital

Chirping Hill [Grillenparz] by Thomas Arzt: staged readings, Los Angeles, Washington, DC (Zeitgeist DC) - as featured in article in Washington Post - and New York, 2012.

The Test (Good Simon Korach) by Lukas Bärfuss
- from German, Die Probe (Der brave Simon Korach)
Presented in staged reading, International Voices Project, Goethe-Institut Chicago, July 2012.

American Shot by Evelyne de la Chenelière and Daniel Brière
            - from Canadian French,
Le plan américain
Presented in staged reading, International Voices Project, Alliance Française, Chicago, June 2012.

Oil by Lukas Bärfuss
- from German, Öl
Presented in staged readings, Goethe-Institut Washington and Goethe-Institut Chicago, June 2011.

hamlet is dead. no gravity by Ewald Palmetshofer
- from German, hamlet ist tot.  keine schwerkraft
Presented in staged readings, Martin E. Segal Theatre Center, CUNY, New York, and Austrian Cultural Forum, Washington, DC, June 2011; also by One Year Lease at Playwrights Horizons, New York, November 2011.  And International Voices Project, Chicago, March 2013, and Norwich, England (Chalk Circle Theatre Company), April 2013.
Translation completed during residency at Ledig House International Writers Residency, Omi, New York, Fall 2010.

The Sexual Neuroses of our Parents by Lukas Bärfuss
- from German, Die Sexuellen Neurosen unserer Eltern
Published by Nick Hern Books (2007), available in US through TCG.
- Gate Theatre, London, Aug.-Sep. 2007
- Electric Pear Productions, New York, Nov. 2008
- Luna Playhouse, Glendale, CA, Aug. 2009.

Tattoo by Igor Bauersima and Réjane Desvignes
    - from German, Tattoo
Published in TheatreForum #35 (2009), with my introduction, "Art and Morality: The Plays of Igor Bauersima and Réjane Desvignes."
Translation completed with a fellowship to the Banff International Literary Translation Centre, Banff, Canada, June 2008.

Blackbox by Thomas Martin
    - from German
Published in The Brecht Yearbook / Das Brecht Jahrbuch  #35 (2010), with my translation of the author's "Three Paragraphs on Blackbox."

The Ballad of the Pine Tree Killer by Rebekka Kricheldorf
- from German, Die Ballade vom Nadelbaumkiller
Published in The Mercurian vol. 1 no. 3, March 2008.  Excerpts published in LMDA Review (The Newsletter of the Literary Managers and Dramaturgs of the Americas) 18.2 (Summer 2008), along with "'A Fundamental Resistance': An Interview with Neil Blackadder by Beth Gallagher."
Presented in staged readings at HERE Arts Center, New York, May 2006, as part of New German Voices 2006 reading series in German Theatre Abroad's Stadttheater New York, and at Duke University, April 2012, as part of Theatrical Translation as Creative Process conference.

The Lovers by Margareth Obexer
 - from German, Die Liebenden
Commissioned for Obexer's residency at Dartmouth College, Spring 2009.
Presented in a staged reading at Loeb Drama Center, Cambridge, June 2009, sponsored by the Goethe-Institut Boston.
Published in 
eXchanges, an online journal of literary translation published by the University of Iowa, Feb. 2012.

Rosa and Blanca by Rebekka Kricheldorf
 - from German, Rosa und Blanca
Produced at Knox College, Feb. 2008, and at Grinnell Arts Center, IA, July 2010.

Cold Cargo by Maxim Biller
- from German, Kühltransport
Presented in a staged reading at CUNY's Martin E. Segal Theatre Centrer, New York, May 2006, as part of the reading series Dis-Location and Re-Invention - International Plays about the Experience of Immigration, co-sponsored by the New Group and the Immigrants' Theatre Project. Translation sponsored by the Goethe-Institut.

Oswald and Zénaïde, or Asides by Jean Tardieu
- from French, Oswald et Zénaïde, ou les apartés
Published in Absinthe: New European Writing 4 (2005).

Dog, Woman, Man by Sibylle Berg
- from German, Hund, Frau, Mann, inspired by Yael Hedaya's story "Housebroken"
Available for download from the Goethe-Institut's Theater Library website.  Presented in staged reading at Goethe-Institut New Delhi, Feb. 2014.

Prose & poetry
"hears himself coming to the door" by Ernst Jandl
- from German, "hört sich an die Tür kommen"
Published in Tongue 2, 2013.

"The Necessity of Art" by Margareth Obexer
- from German, "Die Notwendigkeit der Kunst"
Published in limited edition pamphlet by Akademie Schloss Solitude, Stuttgart, 2010.

"A Better Life" by Martin Brinkmann
- from German, "Schöner leben"
Published in Joyland Dec. 7, 2010.

"Inspired by Football" by Ralf Rothmann
- from German, "Erleuchtung durch Fußball."
Published in Stand 7 (2007).

"Rue Laferrière" by Jacques Réda
- from French.
Published in Two Lines XIV (2007).  Republished in France: A Traveler's Literary Companion, ed. William Rodarmor and Anna Livia (Whereabouts Press, 2008).

"The Speech-Animal" by Sibylle Lewitscharoff
- from German, "Das Sprachtier."
Published in Chelsea 80 (2006).

"Prevent Forest Fires!" by Christoph-Wilhelm Aigner
- from German, "Verhindert Waldbrände!"
Published in Thorny Locust 12 (2004).

Selected presentations

Participant in panel "Translation for the Theater: a hotINK at the Lark/PEN American Center Collaboration," hotINK Festival of International Plays, Lark Play Development Center, New York, April 2013.

"Plays in translation on and off Broadway in the 1960s," working session on 'Center-Staging the 60s,' American Society for Theatre Research conference, Montreal, November 2011

"'Die Qual der Wahl' [the agony of choice]: decision-making in the translation process," Fridays at Four presentation, Knox College, September 2011

Featured speaker, Helen and Kurt Wolff Translation Symposium at the Goethe-Institut Chicago, June 2011

Panelist, "Directors and translators: a dialog," American Literary Translators Association conference, Philadelphia, October 2010

Panelist, discussion with playwright Lukas Bärfuss and his translators in symposium "De la page au plateau: Traduire le théâtre," Lausanne, Switzerland, June 2010
NB Venice

British but now living in the US -
I translate into American or British English


Cell: (309) 299-0184

Professor of Theatre,
Knox College

More information about my research, directing, and teaching
on my Knox web page

Updated April 3, 2014