Twelfth Newsletter


Events of 2009


I did some splendid work here, it was worth coming. Take good care of the House, I’ll need it yet again.

(Sava Babić, translator from Serbia)


Our first guests this year were the students of the Balassi Institute studying Literary Translation (Jelizaveta Szocsivko, Siiri Kolka, Silvia Petzoldt, Kati Fekete, Karolina Rudowicz, Monica Fulda, Krisztina Hrisztova, Maria Elena Szilagyi Chebi, Katarzyna Belczyk, Francesca Ciccariello), working on their translations necessary for earning their Master’s Degree. They were followed by the members of the Saint Petersburg  




Translators’  Workshop (Sonja Kravcova, Elena Kulicheva, Angelina Lebedeva, Alexandra Godun), who under the supervision of Oxana Jakimenko translated works they chose for the occasion (works by Virág Erdős, Lajos Parti Nagy, Ágnes Rapai). The last group visiting the house in January were young Estonian translators (Mirja Jõgi, Helina Pukk, Kirsi Zirel, Kolka Siiri, Jõulu Leelo, Reet Klettenberg), who spent a week at Balatonfüred translating works by László Darvasi, under the supervision of Krisztina Tóth and Viktória Tóth. Between the 9th and the 11th of February Péter Rácz traveled to Berlin for the annual meeting of the RECIT ( In March two representatives of the HALMA, Ulli Janetzki and Laura Seifert visited the two Hungarian locations of the organization, the translator’s house and the Lenau House in Pécs. The winner of last year’s translator’s competition organized by the Balassi Institute Kateřina Anna Šrubařová spent a week in the house. – From the 23rd to the 27th of April, HALMA (, an organization consisting of 27 European translator’s houses and writer’s residences held a meeting with the title Translating Europe in Balatonfüred (sponsors: Bundesregierung von Kultur und Medien, the City of Balatonfüred, patron: Kinga Göncz foreign minister). There were three events open to the public, the first “Hungary in European Literature”, was a discussion moderated by Gábor Schein, with the participation of Gábor Csordás, László Földényi F., László Márton and Zsuzsa Selyem. Also on the 24th of April Péter Esterházy read from his novel Hahn-Hahn grófnő pillantása. On the following day a discussion was organized with the participation of translators: György Rostás-Farkas who translates to the Lovári Roma dialect, Árpád Viczkó from Serbia, Tereza Worowska from Poland and Yu Ze Min from China; the discussion was translated into English, and was moderated by Péter Rácz. In the remaining time the international guests participated in the meetings of the organization and visited the sights of the region. – Besides providing a working space for translators during the spring and the summer we organized workshops aimed at helping inexperienced translators just starting their career. On the 29th of April the Finnish translator’s seminar was the first in this series, lead by professor Tuomo Lahdelma from Jywäskylä and foreign language assistant Gergely Dusnoki, the participants (Kenneth Partti, Maria Sarhemaa, Riikka Pulkkinen, Catia Sulpizi, Kirsi Veistämö, Katri Kluukeri) translated poems by Attila József. The students (Anna Lisa Spaccarotella, Francesca Ciccariello, Monica Fulda,




 Pál Tünde Noémi, Mátyás Dénes, Róth Márton) of the Italian workshop (June 4-11) worked on poems by János Térey, lead by Eszter De Martin. This year we hosted our first ever Czech translators’ seminar (June 21-27), lead by Robert Svoboda the participants (Kateřina Horváthová, Kateřina Anna Šrubařová, Jiří Zeman, Jiří Novák, Tomáš Vašut) translated parts of György Spiró’s Feleségverseny. – Our regular bi-annual art presentation was once again hosted by Márta Kovalovszky, the senior students of the Lajos Lóczy high-school visited the house to look at collection of modern art. For the eight volume of the Füredi Fordítói Füzetek, which was launched at our traditional garden party, former guest of the house translated an essay by Imre Kertész (A boldogtalan huszadik század – The Unhappy 20th Century) into 19 languages. Four translators talked about the experience of translating, Outi Hassi from Finland, Robert Svoboda from The Czech Republic, Kari Kemény from Norway, and Ervin Rosenberg from Sweden. The exhibition of Gabriella Csoszó’s photos was opened by Noémi Kiss. Fang Ying played the guzeng, and was later joined by János Vázsonyi on the saxophone. The guests visited our permanent exhibition with work by: Ferenc Banga, Imre Bak, Márton Barabás, Mariann Bán, John Bátki, András Böröcz, Imre Bukta, Mária Chilf, József Darázs, Pál Deim, El Kazovszkij, Miklós Erdély, László Fehér, László Felugossy, Áron Gábor, Bálint Havas, László Hegedűs2, Katalin Káldi, Károly Kelemen, György Kemény, Ilona Keserü, Károly Klimó, András Koncz, Antal Lakner, Lois Viktor, Rezső Móder, István Nádler, Réka Nemere, István Orosz, Vladimir Péter, Sándor Pinczehelyi, Sándor Rácmolnár, Gábor Roskó, Kata Szalai, Zsuzsa Szenes, Ágnes Szépfalvi, Tamás Szikora, Klára Szilárd, Margit Szilvitzky, János Szirtes, Zoltán Szlabey, László Szotyory, Gábor Szörtsey, József Szurcsik. The exhibition was curated by Márta Kovalovszky.

The Spanish translators’ week long seminar started on the 28th of June. Lead by Adan Kovacsics the team consisting of Maria Elena Szilagyi Chebi, Arbizu Senosian Carmen, Magda Noszticzius, Mária Szijj, José Miguel González Trevejo, Márta Patak, Anna Süveges translated László Darvasi’s A loyangi kutyavadászok. The author was also present. In the middle of July the members of the French seminar




(Olivier Bickart, Laurence Dulieu, Cécile Kovácsházy, Elisabeth Louis, Bérengère Vogel) translated One Minute Stories by István Örkény. – Marta Zbikowska, the winner of the translator’s contest hosted by the Balassi Institute spent a week in the House. – On the 1st of September the translators working in the House talked with Paulo Schiller, translator from Brazil. – On the 4th of September the participants of the Salvatore Quasimodo poetry competition once again met in the House for a book launch. – On the 14th of September representatives of the Chinese Writers Association visited the House. – Between the 16th and 19th of September a HALMA conference was organized in Novo Mesto and Ljubljana in Slovenia focusing on the fresh developments in European literature, Hungary was represented by the poet Marcell Szabó, his reading was sponsored by the Ministry of Education and Culture. – Between the 23rd and 29th of September we organized a Polish translator’s seminar. The participants were selected through a competition 




(Joanna Wilczak, Agata Józwik, Monika Pilaszek, Magdalena Orpiszak, Anna Butrym, Weronika Tünde Góralczyk) once again lead by Tereza Worowska they translated works by László Darvasi, Zsuzsa Vathy, György Dragomán, György Spiró, Tibor Déry. The Hungarian Foreign language Library hosted a translator’s competition, where a special prize, a week stay in the House was awarded to Orsolya Serkédi. – On the 30th of September Iwasaki Etsuko from Japan returned to the house after a few years’ hiatus. – On the 6th and 7th of October the region of Trieste (Italy) organized a conference focusing on the potential of cultural development, Rácz Péter  talked about the experiences gained in the twelve years of running the Translator’s House. – Writers’ delegations from Mongolia and Vietnam visited the House. – The scholarship offered by the HALMA European Union funded writers exchange program was awarded to the poet János Térey, he may spend two one month periods in European Writer’s Residences of his choice. In 2010 the Translator’s House will offer a month’s stay to two writers and translators from abroad as part of the exchange program. From the 17th to the 20th of October we hosted a Slovakian translators’ seminar, 




with Ildikó Hizsnyai, Norbert György, Renáta Deák, Gabriela Magová, Jitka Rožňová, Eva Andrejčáková, they translated works by János Háy, György Norbert, Zsolt Csalog. The seminar was lead by literature professor Judit Görözdi. – The tenant of the small house behind the main building, Lajos Horváth passed away. We asked the Hungarian Public Foundation for Creative Art to modify our contract, we plan to convert the house into a study for disabled persons. The transformation of the garden behind the house began during the winter with the generous help of the Probio Rt.

In 2009 Kinga Szokács continued to prepare extracts from our literary journals throughout the year to aid our translators; these can be found in the house as well as online. – We thank the translators for helping us choose dictionaries and reference works for purchase. – Some of our guests used the low cost meal opportunity provided by the Baricska csárda, many of them visited the beach of the UNI Hotel which is free of charge for our guests, we thank them, once again for these opportunities.

Our caretaker Zsuzsa Bocsor Mrs. Szamosfalvi once again did a splendid job all through the year, the guests were delighted.

In the course of the year the following media reported about the work of the Translators House: Napló (Veszprém), Füred TV, Balatonfüredi Napló, Népszabadság, Magyar Nemzet, Népszava, Magyar Rádió (Kossuth, Bartók), Duna TV, Élet és Irodalom, Magyar Narancs, Klub Rádió, Litera, Magyar Katolikus Rádió, Magyar Távirati Iroda, Műfordítók Egyesületének honlapja, Kompas (Indonesia). Thank you.


The work went extremely well, much better than expected, J…

Tell me what’s the secret of this house? Unbelievable...

(Kati Fekete translator from Germany)