top image

welcome to BBT
Here are the main pillars of our business.

Translations & Writing

Creativity, nuance, spirit...

We have more than 25 years' experience of coordinating translation and writing projects, ranging from TV scripts and anime films to PR videos and brochures. We also undertake all kinds of rewriting, proofreading, copywriting and editing work. With our pool of experienced translators, we can deal with just about any language!

Narrations & Voicework

Clarity, rhythm, tone...

We provide top-class narrators and voice artists in many languages to suit any recording project, ranging from TV commercials and documentaries to train announcements and talking books. We also handle casting and voice coaching for actors as well as project coordination work.


Accuracy, reliability, speed...

We call on our network of highly experienced interpreters for all modes of interpreting work, ranging from simultaneous interpreting at conferences and accompanying interpretation to group interviews. English and Japanese are the main languages, but we can provide interpreters for other languages as well.

What's going on

We have recently worked on many TV documentary programmes. Two of them have received awards:

2023 Digital Eye Ukraine: The New Satellite War
(NHK BS1 Special, NHK-World Japan TV)
- Intermedia-globe SILVER Award on News Reports and Features/Investigative Report (World Media Festivals Hamburg 2023 Television and Corporate Media Awards)
2022 Isamu Noguchi’s Unfinished A-Bomb Cenotaph (TBS Sparkle NHK)
- Galaxy Honors (Incentive Award)
(Japan Council for better Radio and Television in Japan.)


1. Latest books!

Sherlock Holmes: A Collection of 20 Short Stories (IBC, 2023)


Stuart wrote, and Yoko translated, the Foreword for IBC’s latest Ladder Series collection of Sherlock Holmes stories. The cover jacket includes this quotation from the Foreword:
— But perhaps the most important reason of all for Sherlock’s continuing popularity is that avid fans still read the stories, and this book is a great introduction to the Holmes ‘canon’. It features twenty of the most thrilling Holmes adventures and cases for you to dive into and try to solve the mysteries along with Holmes and Watson. Some of them feature murders, other involve Holmes preventing murders from occurring. They all include the fine arts of observation and deduction. I hope you will enjoy them as much as I continue to do and that you will then feel eager to read all sixty of the original stories. —

Eiraku’s 100 English Rakugo Scripts Vol.2 (Kanariya Eiraku, 2023)


Kanariya Eiraku, the distinguished performer of rakugo stories in English, continues with his mission of publishing 100 translated scripts. Stuart was invited to write the Preface for Volume 2, which contains 35 stories. Here is an extract:
As the British missionary Arthur Lloyd wrote, describing a visit to a small yose in the late Meiji period, rakugo stories send us home ‘with laughing hearts’, which we especially treasure in dark times. Now, here we are in the Twenty Twenties, with ever more international interest in rakugo, and an increasing number of both Japanese and foreign performers in English. Eiraku’s volumes are just what the English rakugo world needs to move forward at full steam, sending us all home with laughing hearts!

Tanzanite Sunrise, poetry by Amatsu Aki (Kodansha Editorial, 2022)


Co-translations of some of the poems by Yoko and Stuart and English proofreading.

2. TV & Internet

Web Japan Ministry of Foreign Affairs of Japan

Japan Video Topics

For many years, Stuart has been the narrator for “Japan Video Topics” on Web Japan of the Ministry of Foreign Affairs of Japan, an ongoing series of short videos which offer a comprehensive view of Japanese culture, nature, science and technology, tourism, etc. You can enjoy streaming content from the archive that includes hundreds of topics. The videos can also be heard in other languages. Here are some recent themes:

Soma Nomaoi Horse Festival
The Beauty of Moss
Sustainable Oyster Farming
Anime Voice Actors
The Deer of Nara Park
World’s First Pro Dance League

The Japanese Way of Baseball
Okinawa Looks to the Future
Teenage Creators – The Future of Gaming
Japanese Space Food – “Delicious!”

The Asahi Glass Foundation Blue Planet Prize
(BBT translation and Stuart's narration since 2016)

3. Other publications

CHIHAYAFURU Vol. III (Kodansha Bilingual Comics, 2018)
Translated by Yoko Toyozaki & Stuart Varnam-Atkin


CHIHAYAFURU is a popular manga series about playing competitive karuta that has been made into successful TV series and movies. We previously translated the first three Japanese volumes, and they were published in two bilingual paperback volumes. Volume III is a bilingual version of Japanese Vol. 4 and part of Vol. 5. The appendix includes Stuart's translations of all the Hyakunin Isshu poems that appear in this volume.

The Little Mermaid and Other Stories
by Hans Andersen, retold by Stuart Varnam-Atkin, with illustrations by Yukiko Miki
(Kodansha, Tokyo, 2018; full colour illustrations)

The Little Mermaid and Other Stories

This new and expanded version of the book first published in the 1990s includes Japanese notes for students of English.

NEW TASTES IN GREEN TEA: A Novel Flavor for Familiar Drinks, Dishes, and Desserts
(Kodansha USA, 2016)
by Mutsuko Tokunaga, translated by Yoko Toyozaki and Stuart Varnam-Atkin


This prize-winning guide to all kinds of green tea, their history and their many uses has now being republished in a paperback edition. Featuring many ideas for refreshing beverages, recipes, and tea brewing secrets, it is lavishly illustrated with colour photographs.

by Stuart Varnam-Atkin, translation by Yoko Toyozaki


To make Shakespeare easier to understand, Stuart adapted and modernised 96 famous dialogues from As You Like It, Hamlet, The Merchant of Venice, and Romeo and Juliet. The book also explains 57 well-known quotations from the plays to show their relevance and use today. Yoko translated everything, including the footnotes and synopses of the plays. The attached CD-ROM includes all the dialogues read by Stuart.



The major part of this bilingual book is Stuart’s adaptation of A Christmas Carol by Charles Dickens. Stuart’s introduction was translated by Yoko.

THE BEST OF JAPANESE CULTURE: A Photographic Overview (IBC Publishing)
by Stuart Varnam-Atkin, translation by Yoko Toyozaki


This bilingual book presents an explanation of a broad selection of over 80 colourful aspects of Japanese culture to answer the many questions that foreigners tend to ask about Japan. The colour photographs, some taken by Stuart, were carefully selected to give a vivid visual idea of Japanese life. The book is perfect for anyone who needs to explain Japanese culture in English or as a beautiful reminder of Japan for visitors.

by Stuart Varnam-Atkin, translation by Yoko Toyozaki


This is the second volume of Stuart’s mini-essays on a variety of cross-cultural experiences and thoughts on life in Japan based on the Stuart’s Titbits column in the textbook for the Trad Japan TV series (NHK Educational). It includes more of Stuart’s photos taken in the 1970s.

CHIHAYAFURU Vols. I & II (Kodansha Bilingual Comics)
Translated by Yoko Toyozaki & Stuart Varnam-Atkin


CHIHAYAFURU is a popular manga series about playing competitive karuta that was recently made into a successful TV series. We translated the first three Japanese volumes, and they have just been published in two bilingual paperback volumes. In addition, Stuart faced the challenge of providing a new translation of all 100 Hyakunin Isshu poems in rhyming couplets, which are included at the end of the books, #1~50 in Vol.1 and #51~100 in Vol.2:

Parting before the sun comes up
Is such a cause of pain,
Though I know that when the sun goes down,
I’ll be back in your arms again!

(#52, Fujiwara no Michinobu)

Vol 1:
Vol 2:

by Stuart Varnam-Atkin, translation by Yoko Toyozaki


Some of Stuart’s cross-cultural experiences and thoughts on life in Japan are expressed in 30 bilingual essays based on the Stuart’s Titbits series of mini-essays that appeared in the textbook for the NHK TV series Trad Japan. Also included are 40 of Stuart’s black-and-white analogue photos taken back in the good old days of the 1970s!