Regular readers of the blog, interpreting amateurs and colleagues will know that there are different types or modes of interpreting – simultaneous, consecutive and dialogue. But which type to we prefer? Well, I don’t know about you, but for me it depends a little.
I really like simultaneous, you get such a kick out of doing it. I’m sure endorphin levels are sky-high when you’ve finished a simultaneous spell. But one of the disadvantages with simultaneous interpretation is that you are often secluded from your client or listener. You’re put out of the communicative context.
This is the reason I really like consecutive. In consecutive you are part of the context to a higher degree. The interpreter becomes part of the team in a very tangible way. In many ways it’s nerve wrecking, imagine you’re doing a consecutive interpreting in front of TV cameras, and you know that it is not unlikely your interpreting will end up on YouTube, because you’re interpreting for a star, like Patricia Stöcklin above.
Then it’s much calmer, but also much more challenging when you’re dialogue interpreting for a patient and a doctor. It is a wonderful reward when, thanks to you, the patient gets the right treatment and the participants finally understand each other. You’re in direct contact with your users and it’s immediately obvious whether you make a difference or not.
So, I guess my conclusion is that I really like interpreting – all sorts of them.
This post is part of a list, 30 days of interpreting. You can see the whole list here.
I tend to agree with you on this! I love simultaneous interpreting because, as you put it, you get a great kick from it. And it’s easy to achieve some kind of flow when working in the booth. When working in the booth I also enjoy working together with a colleague and having the opportunity to get to know him/her better (for example when a speaker makes a long speech in your language). But as you very rightly point out, in consecutive you really feel part of the meeting and you receive direct feedback from your audience (many through body language).
Thanks for the comment. It is so true, as you point out, that booth work also means team work, and you have somebody there to support you and also to talk to.