BISTRA ANDREEVA (’01): “It was all about the AURA radio, the MoreHonors, the student newspaper, the photography workshops, the theater plays, the JMC internship at an advertising agency.”

Name: Bistra Andreeva
AUBG Class of: 2001
Major: Journalism and Mass Communication.
Graduate/Advanced degree: MA in Cultural Policy and Cultural Management from the University of Arts in Belgrade and Lumiere University Lyon; MA in Conference Interpreting from Sofia University
Home Country: Bulgaria
Current occupation: Conference Interpreter and Translator of Literature

• Where do we find you at this moment?

At home in Sofia for two weeks, on a short break from my usual summer residence – a caravan on the beach at the Bulgarian seaside (where I work too, don’t get me wrong)

• What was your fist destination after AUBG? Describe your career path.

My first job was as a Production Assistant at SIA Advertising – the biggest TV production house at the time. Prof. Nedyalko Delchev helped me get it as he put me in touch with an alum who was already working there as a director. I went on to be the Executive Producer of TV shows such as Who Wants To Be a Millionaire, I would also travel to acquire entertainment formats. Fun times, but not something I wanted to do forever – after five years I quit and joined an arts and culture magazine (Edno) where I wrote and edited for another five years, worked on cultural events too. Amazing period but I needed a change again and I wanted to go after an actual craft which required expert skills – so I started translating books and learned to interpret professionally. Now I am a freelancer and my time is split between these two things. As an interpreter I am accredited to work for the EU institutions so I get to travel often to Brussels and Strasbourg.

• How have the years at AUBG prepared you for your career?

By teaching me to think, to research, to read. By giving me a non-Bulgarian perspective which helps think outside of the local box. By allowing me to try different things outside of the library – studying was one of the last things I did, it was all about the AURA radio, the MoreHonors, the student newspaper, the photography workshops, the theater plays; my JMC internship was at an advertising agency. More specifically – by keeping my English lean and current, it later proved to be my major asset.

• What class has the most significant impact on you?

Probably History of Mass Communication and Rhetorical Criticism – both taught by the extraordinary Prof. Tony Osborne. I still remember the stories he was telling us (PT Barnum’s publicity stunt to put cigarettes in women’s hands) and the papers I genuinely enjoyed writing (one was an analysis of a Kurt Vonnegut speech). I also absolutely loved the Non-fiction and Poetry Writing classes of Prof. Annie Paradise – she was almost as young as us and so cool, she really opened my eyes to reading and writing.

• Knowing what you know now, what would you want to tell your student self? If you could change something back what would it be?

I was very happy at AUBG – I don’t know if I would change anything. I would simply tell her (my student self): Don’t be scared if you don’t know what you want to do with your life – you’ll be working it out step by step and this will never end (at least until 40). Also: after you graduate cherish your friendship with your AUBG peeps, the world is big but they will prove to be more precious than you know.

• What are the things that make you tick? What is your greatest passion or motivation at present?

Great writing, a little bit of art, a good laugh, good conversation, travelling, keeping fit and the sea make me feel alive. It absolutely thrills me when I translate a book I love that people discover and love as a result. I am also very prone to helping people – I love feeling useful.

• Future projects and plans that you look forward to with anticipation?

I am very much looking forward to adding Spanish as a working language, this is my project for the next 3-4 years. Hopefully Italian will be next. I am excited about the new class of Conference Interpreting students at Sofia University where I teach. Of course, I probably won’t resist taking on some more great literary fiction to translate.

• May fellow alumni keep in touch with you for mentorship and career advice?

By all means!

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.

Scroll to Top
Skip to toolbar