I accidentally watched ten minutes of George W. Bush and Gerhard Schröder at lunch in Mainz on TV (ARD). Schröder made a short speech, and it was interpreted. He apologized in quite a few words to the interpreter for having added stuff, which I suppose is good and bad. She had a copy of the speech before additions and presumably he saw her adding notes – but this is standard. (Hence ‘Es gilt das gesprochene Wort’: ‘Check against delivery’, written at the top of these speech drafts handed out to interpreters or press).
It is good to hear speeches held and interpreted, and for trainee interpreters a good chance to record them on videotape as practice material. The TV presentation seemed a bit of a mess. Bush didn’t react while Schröder was speaking German, obviously. When the interpreter began, he began his series of facial expressions. Then the English was faded out and we went back to the winter sports. Now, they had already said it was time to go back to sports, but did someone in that studio say, ‘It’s English, no-one will understand it, let’s leave’? I would have thought that Bush’s reactions to the speech were the most interesting thing, whether genuine or rehearsed.