Hendrik Lindepuu

Henrik Lindepuu (b. 11. XI 1958) is a translator from Polish and a playwright.

Lindepuu was born at Mõisaküla in Viljandi county, and educated at Ülemõisa, Võhma and Viljandi. He has worked at various jobs, including several library posts while living in Finland in the first half of the nineties; subsequently he has been freelance in Estonia. He joined the Writers’ Union in 1987. He has his own publishing company.

At the start of his career, in 1979, Lindepuu published poems and short pieces of prose in the press; later he wrote plays based on cultural history: Süda kaheks (‘Heart in Two’, staged in 1985 at the Rakvere Theatre), based on Henrik Visnapuu’s correspondence with Hilda Franzdorf-Visnapuu (Ingi); Tol kevadel Tartus (‘That Spring in Tartu’), based on Hella Wuolijoki’s memoirs, staged at the Vanemuine theatre in 1986; and Kas teda hoida saab (‘Can She be Kept’, staged at the Vanemuine in 1988), based on the correspondence between Juhan Liiv and Liisa Golding. The poetry collection Ei haise ega lõhna (‘It Doesn’t Stink or Smell’) appeared in 2002.

Lindepuu has written theatre and film criticism and articles about Polish literature; indeed he is mainly known as a renowned translator of Polish literature, having put numerous plays and prose works into Estonian.

He has been awarded the Aleksander Kurtna prize for translation (1994), the annual prize of the journal Looming (1998), the S.I. Witkiewicz prize of the Polish Centre of the International Theatre Institute and the translation prize of the Polish Authors’ Society (1997), the Gold Cross of Poland for Service, first rank (2005), the Estonian Literature Endowment Annual Award for his translations of Tadeusz Różewicz’ ‘Selected poems’ and other important works of Polish literature (2009), the Estonian National Culture Award (2015), the ‘Live and Shine’ scholarship (2018) and the August Sang prize for poetry translation, for his translation of the poem ‘Farmer’s Wife’ by Anna Świrszczyńska (2019).

A. K. (Translated by C. M.)

Books in Estonian

Ei haise ega lõhna. Laiuse: H. Lindepuu, 2002, 49 lk.

Haisevad ja lõhnavad; Memmed ja taadid; Slavoween. Kolm teatriteksti. Laiuse: H. Lindepuu, 2002, 106 lk.