Prose Translators

Andrew Bromfield was born in Hull in Yorkshire, England. He has been a full-time translator from Russian for more than twenty years. He was a co-founder and original editor of Glas, a journal of modern Russian literature in English translation. His numerous translations include Mikhail Shishkin’s Letter-Book(The Light and the Dark), works by the Strugatsky brothers, Vladimir Voinovich, Pavel Pepperstein, Olga Slavnikova and Andrey Kurkov, as well as most books by Victor Pelevin and Boris Akunin, Mikhail Bulgakov’s A Dead Man’s Memoirs (A Theatrical Novel) and A Dog’s Heart (An Appalling Story), Leo Tolstoy’s War and Peace (Original Version) and the two-volume Russian Criminal Tattoo Encyclopaedia.

Hugh Aplin studied as an undergraduate and post-graduate at the University of East Anglia, where his interests included research in the field of Russian prose fiction of the 1830s. As part of his studies, he spent three academic years at the state universities of Voronezh, Leningrad and Moscow, courtesy of funding from the British Council. He worked for several years at the universities of Leeds and St Andrews before becoming head of Russian at Westminster School in London, a position he still holds. He began translating from Russian as a postgraduate student and has published more than thirty books, most of which have been translations of classic texts. These include works from the nineteenth century by Pushkin, Lermontov, Gogol, Turgenev, Dostoevsky, Tolstoy and Chekhov; and from the twentieth century by, among others, Gorky, Bunin, Zamyatin and Bulgakov.

Mitchell Albert is an independent editor and publisher based in London. He is the co-founder of two literary publishing imprints: Paper + Ink publishes classic and contemporary short stories and novellas from around the world, many in English translation for the first time (, and Periscope publishes literary fiction and non-fiction, including many translations He is the former Commissioning Editor of Saqi, an esteemed independent publishing house (for which he helped develop Telegram, its fiction imprint). He was also the first programme director of the Writers’ Centre Norwich (now the National Centre for Writing) and Editorial Director of PEN International, the worldwide writers’ association and freedom of expression NGO. In addition, he was associate editor of Steppe, a magazine of Central Asian arts, travel and culture that operated from 2006 to 2011, and co-authored Keep Your Eye on the Wall: Palestinian Landscapes (2013). 

Simon Hollingsworth is a professional translator with more than twenty-five years of experience. He specialises in the translation of literary works, screenplays and subtitles for films and documentaries, legal and technical material. Simon lived for ten years in Saint Petersburg and Moscow, working for western and Russian companies and organisations. Significant translations include The Selected Works of Herold Belger, The Man-Deer and Other Stories by Oralkhan Bokeev, Kazakhs – Children of the Steppe by Chokan and Murat Laumullin, The History of the Steppe by Sultan Akimbekov, Viktor Pelevin’s EmpireV and the book Water. With Love and Gratitude, to accompany a major Russian documentary series.

Rose France is a literary translator and teaching fellow at the University of Edinburgh. She has a PhD in literary translation and teaches Russian language, literature and translation studies. She has translated poems by Lermontov for the collection After Lermontov: Translations for the Bicentenary (2014). She is co-translator of the collection of short stories and memoirs by Teffi, Rasputin and Other Ironies (2016) and of Children of War: Diaries 1941-1945 (2016). She has contributed translations of stories and sketches by Teffi and Zoshchenko for the anthologies Russian Emigre Short Stories: From Bunin to Yankovsky (2017) and 1917: Stories and Poems from the Russian Revolution (1917).

Richard Coombes studied Classics at Cambridge, after which he played drums and guitar in bands for several years before pursuing a career in tax, first in HMRC and then as an international tax consultant. In his spare time, he continued to write songs and short stories, and pursued a long-standing and growing interest in Russia and Russian. In 2015, he retired early in order to pursue his Russian studies more intensively. Richard translates song lyrics, poetry and literary prose. He considers translating song lyrics to be a discipline beneficial for all aspiring literary translators, believing that the requirement to preserve the original rhythm and metre while observing the rules of professional translation presents the perfect opportunity to convey precisely the writer’s meaning while deploying creativity in using one’s native language. Richard lives in Glossop, England and spends about two months a year in Russia.

Simon Geoghegan is a Russian-English translator from the United Kingdom. He has over twenty years’ translating and editing experience in the United Kingdom and the former Soviet Union. His deep knowledge of the Russian language and culture is a result of living in Russia for four years and enjoying nineteen years of marriage to his Russian wife. He still spends two or three months of every year in Russia. Simon has translated a wide range of media including old archive materials and large-scale literary works. He is also an experienced translator of the Kazakh language and has translated or edited several works for the Kazakh PEN Club.