School of English and Drama

Drama menu

Professor Maria Delgado, BA (Wales), MA (Leeds), PhD (Newcastle-Upon-Tyne)

Professor of Theatre & Screen Arts



Maria Delgado

I grew up in the UK as the daughter of Spanish refugees. I first became interested in theatre and film at school and went on to study at the Universities of Wales, Leeds and Newcastle-Upon-Tyne. I have been undertaking curatorial work in film and stage translations (from Spanish and French) since the early 1990s. I taught at the University of Hull and Manchester Metropolitan University before arriving at Queen Mary in 1997. I have received a number of awards for my work, including the Premi Joan Cendròs (2008), a George Watson Fellowship from the University of Queensland (2013), the ATHE Excellence in Editing Award (2013) and the Orden de Isabel la Católica – Encomienda (2003). I have longstanding interests in the politics and practices of editing and have been co-editor of Contemporary Theatre Review since 2001. Ongoing editorial work includes co-editorship of two book series for Manchester University Press and Cambridge University Press. 

See for further information on my current work and activities.


Undergraduate teaching:

In the 2014-15 academic year, I teach on:

I also regularly contribute to teaching on:


Research interests:

Pedro Almodóvar A.M.P.A.S. tribute.
Photograph by Simon Liebowitz © A.M.P.A.S.

  • Culture and historical memory
  • Performance and film analysis (with particular emphasis on Spain and Argentina)
  • Twentieth- and Twenty first-century Spanish theatre and film
  • Contemporary Argentine theatre and cinema
  • Performance cultures (with a special emphasis on directors’ theatre) in contemporary Europe
  • Translation for the stage and the interrelationships between translation and mise en scène

Recent and On-Going Research

My research to date has focused on three key, inter-related areas: 1) Spanish-language theatrical cultures; 2) screen cultures including creative processes, distribution and curation; and 3) the working methods and material conditions of production across both film and theatre which has also involved translation for the stage. Many of my publications — including In Contact with the Gods?: Directors Talk Theatre, co-edited with Paul Heritage (Manchester University Press, 1996), Contemporary European Theatre Directors, co-edited with Dan Rebellato (Routledge 2010) —  have integrated a field of artistic process into the academic discourse of analysis and critique, bringing practitioners' ideas and insights on theatre and performance practice into a more public arena. My writings about theatre, opera, and film are also concerned with mapping transnational, transcultural currents — The Paris Jigsaw, co-edited with David Bradby (Manchester University Press, 2002), ‘Other’ Spanish Theatres (Manchester University Press, 2003), Catalan Theatre 1975-2006, co-edited with David George and Lourdes Orozco (Contemporary Theatre Review, 17.3, 2007), Federico García Lorca (Routledge, 2008), A History of Theatre in Spain, co-ed. with David T. Gies (Cambridge University Press, 2012), Spanish Cinema 1973-2010, co-ed. with Robin Fiddian (Manchester University Press, 2013). These publications construct revisionist cultural histories, offering readers a new range of approaches to the art of making theatre and film, reassessing periods, companies or figures in twentieth-century cultural history in modes that recognize fertile – and often undocumented – collaborations in Spain and Spanish America.

I am currently working on a project on historical memory in Spain and Spanish America in the twenty-first century that builds on earlier research on appropriations of Lorca in the post-Franco era.


See for further information about my publications.

Selected Books

with R. Fiddian, eds, Spanish Cinema 1973-2010: Auteurism, Politics, Landscape and Memory  (Manchester: Manchester University Press, 2013)

with D. T. Gies, eds, A History of Theatre in Spain (Cambridge: Cambridge University Press, 2012)

with D. Rebellato, eds, Contemporary European Theatre Directors (Abingdon: Routledge, 2010)

Federico García Lorca (Abingdon, Oxon: Routledge, 2008)

with David Bradby, eds, Bernard-Marie Koltès: Plays 2 (London: Methuen, 2004)

with C. Svich, eds, Theatre in Crisis?: Performance Manifestos for a New Century (Manchester: Manchester University Press, 2003)

'Other' Spanish Theatres: Erasure and Inscription on the Twentieth-Century Spanish Stage (Manchester: Manchester University Press, 2003)

with David Bradby, The Paris Jigsaw: Internationalism and the City’s Stages (Manchester: Manchester University Press, 2002)

Selected Articles and Chapters

‘Carles Santos: Music in the Theatre’ in Taking it to the Bridge: Music as Performance, ed. by Nicholas Cook and Richard Pettengill (Michigan University Press, 2013), pp. 237-61

‘Performing Barcelona: Cultural Tourism, Geography and Identity’, in Barcelona: Visual Culture, Space and Power, ed. by H. Buffery and C. Caulfield (Cardiff: University of Wales Press, 2012), pp. 173-92

‘A pesquisa em artes cênicas na Inglaterra’, in Arte e ciência: abismo de rosas, ed. by Luiz Fernando Ramos (Sao Paolo: Abrace, 2012), pp. 214-250.

‘Performing Exile: María Casares’ in Stages of Exile, ed. by Helena Buffery (Oxford, Bern, Berlin, Bruxelles, Frankfurt am Main, New York, Wien: Peter Lang, 2011), pp. 203-28.

Bernard-Marie Koltès: A Personal Alphabet’, PAJ, 98 (2011), pp. 26-35.

‘Entre la verdad y la mentira: encuentro de cine y teatro en Cegada de amor, de La Cubana’ in Escenarios compartidos: cine y teatro en España en el umbral del siglo XXI, ed. by Vergena Berger and Mercè Saumell (Vienna & Berlin: Lit Verlag, 2009), pp. 237-248.

‘The Actress and the Playwright: Historiographical Models of Collaboration’, ALEC, vol. 32, no. 2 (2007), pp. 385-414.

‘Las artes escénicas en España 1991-2006’, Enciclopedia del español en el mundo; anuario del  Instituto Cervantes 2006-2007 (Madrid: Instituto Cervantes/ Círculo de Lectores/ Plaza Janés, 2006),  pp. 635-37.

‘Journeys of Cultural Transference: Calixto Bieito’s Multilingual Shakespeares’, Modern Language Review, vol. 1001, no. 1 (January 2006), pp. 106-50.

 ‘Las criadas. Genet and Spain’, chapter in Genet: Performance and Politics, eds. Clare Finburgh, Carl Lavery & Maria Shevtsova (London: Palgrave, 2006), pp. 143-55).

'The Politics of Paris: Interculturalism, Diversity and Particularity on the City's Stages', Romance Notes, vol. 42, no. 2, 2001, pp. 243-55.

See also my Queen Mary Research Publications profile


I have translated the work of a range of dramatists including Susana Torres Molina, Ramón del Valle-Inclan, Mario Benedetti, and Bernard-Marie Koltès.  My translations have been produced by (among others) the Vault, Southwark Playhouse (2012), de Singel Theatre, Antwerp (2009); the Avignon Festival (2006); Arcola Theatre, London (2004); the Théâtre de Lorient, Bretagne, France (2002); the Hagley Theatre, New Zealand (2001); 7 Stages, Atlanta, Georgia, USA (2001); the ICA (1992) and Battersea Arts Centre (1990).

PhD Supervision

I would welcome enquiries from potential doctoral students interested in any of the areas of my research.

I have recently supervised the following successful PhD projects:

  • Caoimhe McAvinchey, ‘Possible Ficitions: The Testimony of Applied Performance with Women in Prisons in England and Brazil’, co-supervised with Paul Heritage (2006)
  • Joel Anderson, ‘Theatre and Performance Photography: Documentation and the “Unlive”’ (2008)
  • Simon Breden, ‘Beyond the Playwright: The Creative Process of Els Joglars & Teatro de la Abadia’ (2009)
  • Margherita Laera, ‘Appropriating Greek Tragedy: Community, Democracy and other Mythologies’ (2010)
  • Gabriel Quirós Alpera, ‘Historia de la Dirección Escénica en España: José Luis Alonso’, co-supervised with Javier Huerta Calvo (Instituto del Teatro de Madrid) (2010)
  • Una Bauer, ‘Post 1990s Dance Theatre and (the Idea of) the Neutral’ (2011)
  • Kate Eaton, ‘False Alarms and Fake Excursions: Translating Virgilio Piñero for Performance’ (2011)
  • Geraldine Brodie, ‘Plays in Translation on the London Stage: Visibility, Celebrity, Agency and Collaboration’, co-supervised with Theo Hermans (UCL) (2012)
  • Cecilia Sosa, ‘Performance, Kinship and Archives: Queering Acts of Mourning in the Aftermath of Argentina’s 1976-1983 Dictatorship’, co-supervised with Catherine Silverstone (2012)
  • Charlie Allwood, 'The Gran Teatre del Liceu and Catalan Culture: History, Representation and Myth' (2013)
  • Anna Wilson, 'Argentine Theatre in Twenty-first Century Barcelona: Cultural Exchange and (Trans)national Identities' (2014)

Public engagement

My work with the creative industries involves reviewing, programming and curatorial work in film, translation for the stage, theatre criticism and broadcasting, public lectures and interviews, and programme notes for film, theatre and opera.  

My programming and consultancy work in film includes a position as programme advisor with the London Film Festival since 1997, responsible for the selection and presentation of Spanish and Latin American films including over 100 interviews with directors, producers and actors including Lisandro Alonso, Javier Bardem, Daniel Burman, Penélope Cruz, Benicio del Toro, Pablo Berger, Fabian Bielinsky, Delfina Castagnino, Alejandro González Iñárritu, Diego Luna, Julio Medem, Ventura Pons, Javier Rebollo, Carlos Saura, Santiago Segura, Albert Serra, Gustavo Tarreto, and Pablo Trapero. I am currently involved in an ongoing project with the London Spanish Film Festival on actors and acting titled “Acting Across Frontiers”, presented in association with Queen Mary University of London’s Centre for Public Engagement. For further information on this, my public conversations with Pedro Almodóvar, my film criticism for Sight & Sound and DVD programme notes, and my role as a programming associate on the Argentine Film Festival London, see

My public engagement activities in theatre include chairing the board of the award-winning ATC (Actors Theatre Company), one of Arts Council England’s National Portfolio organisations and consultancies on a range of theatre productions in the UK, Spain and Argentina. Recent projects include Ainadamar directed by Peter Sellars at the Teatro Real Madrid (2012); The House of Bernarda Alba, directed by Bijan Sheibani at the Almeida Theatre London (2012); Damned by Despair, directed by Bijan Sheibani at the National Theatre London (2012); and Ivan and the Dogs by Hattie Naylor at the Teatre Lliure Barcelona (2012). I have produced programme notes for theatre and opera stagings in the UK, Germany, Italy, Spain and the USA – recent work includes Carmen (ENO 2012) and Fidelio (ENO 2013). I am  also an Artistic Assessor for Arts Council England (having previously worked as an advisor to Northern Arts, North West Arts and Arts Council of England). For further details on my theatre projects, see

I have contributed to over 100 radio and television programmes in the UK and Spain. This includes reviews of a range of film and stage work for the BBC World Service's The Strand, BBC Radio Three's Night Waves and Radio 4's The Film Programme, Saturday Review and Front Row as well as appearances on TV3, RTVE, BBC News 24, Radio Ser and BBC's The Cinema Show. I appeared as a guest on the BBC Radio 4's Start the Week on "Spain in Crisis" (first broadcast 14 May 2012). For further details on my reviews and broadcasting, see

I have served on a range of juries and panels – including the Rolex 2001-02 Mentor and Protégé Nominating Panel, the Discovering Latin America Film Festival Critics Jury (2009, 2010) and the Argentine competition jury of the Buenos Aires Independent Film Festival [BAFICI] (2012) and given public lectures and conducted public interviews with cultural figures from Spain and Spanish America at a range of venues in Spain, Egypt, Turkey, Germany, Argentina and the UK. 

Bookmark and Share
Return to top