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The 10 theatre performances you actually wanted to see in 2014, even if you had to leave Amsterdam for half of them

It's raining annual lists and we're merrily joining in. As subjective as anyone, after all, no one sees everything, and opinions on taste can always differ. Of course, also in this list many performances in or from the Randstad, but half of them were not yet shown there. And all genres mixed together. As long as it is theatre. With the only limitation: no repeats, apologies Ring and Lohengrin (DNO), St John Passion (NRO). And no dance, because for that our partner dance audience

 #1 The National Opera: Arnold Schoenberg, Gurre-Lieder opera

The best opera of the year that is not actually an opera but a, yes, what really? World oratorio, with a more than megalomaniac orchestral and choral cast and a heartbreaking love story. Pierre Audi dared to provide the scenic world premiere. The result? Breathtaking.

Youth Theatre Sonnevanck: Sissi youth

The bull-sweet story that no longer wants to be bull-sweet, but punctures the balloon of the princess fairy tale with pace, humour and an irresistible soundtrack, sung live. Youth theatre that truly holds up a mirror to everyone from eight to a hundred.

Dutch Travel Opera: Stephen Sondheim, Sweeney Todd musical thriller

The musical that isn't a musical. And a thriller, but for skilled singers, actors and veteran cabaret performer Sanne Wallis De Vries. With probably the most disturbing scene of the entire theatre year.

Duke Salt, Be festival, stage

The showcase of Boulevard this year. Musical theatre, drama and location theatre all in one. Just do it: a performance about domestic violence, divorce and neglect in a schoolyard. Duke Salt did it. And there were laughs in spite of this.

#5 Zuidelijk Toneel / Nieuw Utrechts Toneel, Ouds&News Show cabaret, show

The New Year's Eve conference, but totally different. Student-like, disruptive, sometimes toe-curling, improvised on the spot and from too bland to gripping within 30 seconds.

#6 Dutch Travel Opera: JacobTV, The News opera

News, again totally different. Soundbites become opera, visually and musically grandiose processed into a new overall experience. No, not the future of opera, but a new perspective on a genre.

#7 Toneelgroep Amsterdam: The Fountainhead stage

Idea novel almost degenerated into neoliberal bible, but thanks to director Ivo van Hove and especially Halina Reijn also love story with troubled main characters to say the least.

#8 Julika Marijn and Christianne Stotijn, Die Weise von Liebe und Tod literature, recital

In which acclaimed actress Julika Marijn and world-renowned mezzo Christianne Stotijn take literature, recital, drama and location theatre to the next level. Starting point: The disrupted life of Etty Hillesum, with poetry by Rilke, music by Mahler, Schubert, Eisler Location: the synagogue of Deventer, city where Etty Hillesum grew up.

#9 Opera2Day, La troupe d'Orpée opera, location theatre

Opera2day settles down as a touring company and surprises, amuses and moves, literally bringing the audience into contact with la troupe and making the best use of the space. The venue: the Grote Kerk in The Hague.

#10 Theatre Group Kwatta / The Gelderland Orchestra, Dissus youth, classical

Classic became golden pin winner became exciting performance about the desire to be a hero yourself, about setbacks and the search for solutions, about discovering the world and realising that not everything is as you thought. And that from a company that seemed to have been cut away but has since found success even in New York.

But more on that in the new year.

Photo at top: Monique van de Wijdeven

Henri Drost

Henri Drost (1970) studied Dutch and American Studies in Utrecht. Sold CDs and books for years, then became a communications consultant. Writes for among others GPD magazines, Metro, LOS!, De Roskam, 8weekly, Mania, hetiskoers and Cultureel Persbureau/De Dodo about everything, but if possible about music (theatre) and sports. Other specialisms: figures, the United States and healthcare. Listens to Waits and Webern, Wagner and Dylan and pretty much everything in between.View Author posts

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