Since I was little I have always been very musical. I used to sing all the time, in the car, walking, on the bus.. Just everywhere. I didn’t become a singer, but I started to take piano lessons when I was eight. Then I realized I was also interested in studying music and I became a musicologist. Wait, what does it have to do with translation?
A lot, I believe. Music and languages are close companions. So, as a child, when I was not singing or playing, I was busy with an English course for children that my parents bought for me. Later when I started studying English at school I discovered it was quite easy for me to learn a foreign language.
But I truly discovered my passion, and my talent, for languages when I moved to Denmark in order to take my master degree in Musicology. The lessons were only in Danish, so I absolutely had to learn it. Living, studying and working in Denmark made me fluent in both oral and written Danish, and it also improved my English skills - before learning Danish I had to become better at English too!
In the meantime, I also learned some Spanish, a language that is closer to my mother tongue, Italian. As soon as I felt quite confident about my Danish, I started working as a teacher of Italian in a school just outside Copenhagen. My first students were beginners, but soon I was hired by a class of advanced students. It was during these years that I started translating excerpts of Danish novels into Italian, so my class could exercise in this activity as well. Also during this period, I was hired by a company to translate some articles, this time from Italian into Danish.
At the university, I had to write papers in both English and Danish, a task that continued after my graduation, when for about one year I worked as a freelance researcher at the Danish Institutes in Rome and Athens, and at the Royal Library in Copenhagen.
Two years ago I moved to Athens – new country, new language! Learning Greek was a new exciting challenge. So, what’s next?
This is my next challenge, becoming a freelance translator. A few very lucky people can say they turned their hobby into a passion. I hope I can be one of them.