Skip to content

'At many theatres, you don't have to arrive if you don't bring your own audience.'

I spoke to Peter Pluymaekers, artistic director of Theatre Group Zep, about what it is like to make theatre for vmbo students. The occasion was the not-so-jubilant performance of Cleopatra.

Listen to the podcast on anchor:

'I'm always a bit reluctant to do Shakespeare. I find him difficult, and young people often find him corny. I felt the same about the Shakespeares I saw myself. I then started working with translators who were also very much in the rap scene. The last few years also with Brainpower. We developed a style that was accessible, which is what Shakespeare actually was. It was folk theatre.'

'Young people often don't want to invest in a piece that is at first sight tough and corny. So you have to make it easy for them. That it slides in with them, so to speak. I work a lot for vmbo. These are pupils who often go to theatre for the first time. Then you shouldn't hold it against them. Then they never come back.'

'The annoying thing about youth theatre is that young people don't pay that much for a ticket, so the buy-out fee is also very low. So you have to see in advance if you can fill the auditorium. If you have good contact with a school, that is the entrance to fill the auditorium. Often, at a theatre, you don't have to arrive if you don't bring your own audience.'

Listen to the entire 40-minute conversation here, or on any of the other 11 channels.

Appreciate this article!

Happy with this story? Show your appreciation with a small contribution! That's how you help keep independent cultural journalism alive. (If you don't see a button below, use this link: donation!)

Donate smoothly

Why donate?

We are convinced that good investigative journalism and expert background information are essential for a healthy cultural sector. There is not always space and time for that. Culture Press does want to provide that space and time, and keep it accessible to everyone for FREE! Whether you are rich, or poor. Thanks to donations From readers like you, we can continue to exist. This is how Culture Press has existed since 2009!

You can also become a member, then turn your one-off donation into lasting support!

Wijbrand Schaap

Cultural journalist since 1996. Worked as theatre critic, columnist and reporter for Algemeen Dagblad, Utrechts Nieuwsblad, Rotterdams Dagblad, Parool and regional newspapers through Associated Press Services. Interviews for TheaterMaker, Theatererkrant Magazine, Ons Erfdeel, Boekman. Podcast maker, likes to experiment with new media. Culture Press is called the brainchild I gave birth to in 2009. Life partner of Suzanne Brink roommate of Edje, Fonzie and Rufus. Search and find me on Mastodon.View Author posts

Private Membership (month)
5 / Maand
For natural persons and self-employed persons.
No annoying banners
A special newsletter
Own mastodon account
Access to our archives
Small Membership (month)
18 / Maand
For cultural institutions with a turnover/subsidy of less than €250,000 per year
No annoying banners
A premium newsletter
All our podcasts
Your own Mastodon account
Access to archives
Posting press releases yourself
Extra attention in news coverage
Large Membership (month)
36 / Maand
For cultural institutions with a turnover/subsidy of more than €250,000 per year.
No annoying banners
A special newsletter
Your own Mastodon account
Access to archives
Share press releases with our audience
Extra attention in news coverage
Premium Newsletter (substack)
5 trial subscriptions
All our podcasts

Payments are made via iDeal, Paypal, Credit Card, Bancontact or Direct Debit. If you prefer to pay manually, based on an invoice in advance, we charge a 10€ administration fee

*Only for annual membership or after 12 monthly payments

en_GBEnglish (UK)