Sarah Ardizzone (née Adams)

Sarah Ardizzone is an award-winning translator from the French. She has also worked as a festival curator and a journalist reporting on multicultural and multilingual issues. She originally trained in physical theatre with Jacques Lecoq in Paris.

Sarah was highly praised for her translation of the young French-Algerian Faïza Guène’s Just Like Tomorrow, winning the Scott-Moncrieff Prize 2007, and was awarded the Marsh Prize for Children's Literature in Translation in 2005 for Daniel Pennac's Eye of the Wolf and in 2009 for Timothée de Fombelle's eco-adventure Toby Alone. Sarah specialises in translating urban slang, and has spent time living in Marseille to pick up ‘Beur’ verlan. Back home in Brixton, she continues to collaborate with the young slangstas of Live Magazine. 

Sarah is currently curating the Translation Nation programme for the Stephen Spender Memorial Trust and Eastside Educational Trust, which will be rolled out in primary schools during 2011-2012. The project matches talented literary translators with young students and their parents whose mother tongues aren't English, to create fresh and original translations of stories for children from around the world. She is also a patron of the children’s world literature charity Outside In and one of the first 'mentors' appointed in a brand new pilot scheme by The British Centre for Literary Translation and the Translators Association.

Her recent translations include School Blues by Daniel Pennac  (of which Michael Morpurgo says:  “Every education minister, every teacher, every parent should read this”) and on which she collaborated with Quentin Blake, after first working together on Pennac's The Rights of the Reader. Her translation of Joann Sfar’s graphic novel version of The Little Prince was named chosen as one of the New York Times' Notable Books of 2010. She is working on Black Bazar by Congolese author Alain Mabanckou, about the dandies of Brazzaville, and her translation of Faiza Guène’s third novel, Bar Balto, is just out from Chatto & Windus. 

Red is Sarah's favourite colour and Little Red Riding Hood is one of the fairy tales she relishes most (she's a great fan of Angela Carter's The Company of Wolves), so she's thrilled to have had this opportunity to work on Little Red Hood with the supremely talented Marjolaine Leray and Phoenix Yard on one of their inaugural titles. 

Other exciting picture books that Sarah has translated include Delphine Durand's My House (Winged Chariot) and Super H by Olivier Douzou and Philippe Derrien (Milet Publishing). 


January 2011