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'Sprouting dance on a bed of grass and sedum' - Carefull Art puts Utrecht artists on a very special map

"Over the past two-and-a-half years, I have started making choices. Where ten years ago I thought of going into life as a dance teacher, now the question is: do I really want to? What makes me happy, what do I want to share with the people around me?" For Lotte Willemsma, the first two years of the Corona pandemic were... 

'NOW support saved us, but creates a lot of extra workload afterwards.'

At the end of July, we posted an appeal by the UWV on this site. The benefit agency sounded the alarm because few cultural organisations had yet completed their final application for corona support. If they had not submitted the application corresponding to the advance received earlier before 31 October, they would have to repay that advance anyway. Every reason to take a... 

Jolanda Spoel seamlessly forges hip-hop and classical together in Melomaniac. And that is quite difficult

'They come from two worlds, but work together towards something that is one. Jolanda Spoel has done that perfectly'. Katinka Reinders, head of education at the Rotterdam Philharmonic Orchestra, is enthusiastic after one of the first play-in performances of Melomaniac at Maas Theatre & Dance. Just now, a room full of somewhat timid secondary school students turned into a churning group of lovers of... 

'Smash the crystal ball. Empathise with future generations!' - About Digital Decisiveness #2

Perhaps the COVID pandemic did not itself create unprecedented inventions and new things, but unexpected things that were already there suddenly came to the fore. Like podcasts, like online art, like new views on leadership and a different way of looking at the future. Very briefly, this is what you take away from the total of eight hours of... 

The big question of online gathering: who will show us the way to the bar? #Digitaladventure 1

A virtual gun, which, when you shoot it, does not fire a bullet but displays a pop-up with encyclopaedic information about what you have just fired at. Now if only we fought the next war with that. It was conceived by Iranian artist Ali Eslami, who was forced by the lockdown to use his international network to develop... 

Promotion critical interview with Amersfoort alderman hampered by Facebook

In the ongoing series of interviews with leading figures from Amersfoort's cultural sector, I interviewed D66 alderman Fatma Koser Kaya. It turned into an animated conversation. Strangely enough, De Stadsbron, Amersfoort's local journalism site, is not allowed to promote the interview from Facebook, the editors announced yesterday. It is unclear why. Here is an excerpt, the whole story of course on De Stadsbron: 'I believe... 

'It is crucial that people who mature here - also as artists - can stay connected to Amersfoort'

For De Stadsbron, Amersfoort's journalistic background site, I chart the cultural sector of the Keistad. On that site now, an interview with Friederike Weisner, director of Theatre De Lieve Vrouw. 'According to Weisner, the lack of a university or college ensures that the need for knowledge is visible: 'You will always have to be innovative as a city. There ... 

Patrick Nederkoorn: 'We have everything in order and don't excel at anything.'

For De Stadsbron, I interviewed Patrick Nederkoorn, comedian but in a previous life also politician, about his city, Amersfoort: You had a decisive role in politics here for eight years. In your programme, you reckon with that a bit. You argue that you were very much on form, and sometimes sold content where later you didn't... at all. 

'Library has no respect for artists!' Sale of works from Art Loan against sore leg Amersfoort art world.

This weekend, gallery owner Henk Logman discovered to his horror that artworks from the Amersfoort Art Loan were being offered for sale on a Belgian auction site. On his facebook page, he reports: 'The extraordinary thing about the whole thing is that the now still living artists were not informed of this. I would at least have expected that to have happened.... 

'The soprano sighs, supports, whispers, breathes in, breathes out, blows, squeals' - Helmut Lachenmann Got Lost in November Music

German composer Helmut Lachenmann (1935) is a champion of evocative squeaks, creaks and crunches. Like John Cage, for instance, he hears music in unusual sources. Rarely is an instrument played the way it is written in the books. 'Making music with sounds is relatively simple and always somewhere modern,' he once said of this. Although he started his career as a choirboy counts... 

'Like a terrifying chorus of ghostly aliens.' Why you just have to suffer Anna Korsun in November Music.

'Anna Korsun stood head and shoulders above her peers with her surprising, introspective and communicative music.' I wrote that in 2014, when she won the Gaudeamus Award. 'We are definitely going to hear more from her,' I concluded, and since then the Ukrainian has more than fulfilled that promise. She has made a name for herself as a composer, pianist, vocalist, conductor and (co-)organiser of concert series.... 

Music from anger and powerlessness - Extra focus on sensational composer Georg Friedrich Haas in November Music

Last year, Austrian Georg Friedrich Haas caused a stir at the Holland Festival by openly talking about his master-slave relationship with his wife Mollena. If possible, even more startling was their joint production Hyena. Mollena Williams-Haas told a blood-curdling tale of how she rehabbed from her alcohol addiction, her husband providing the hypnotic music. This year, Haas is one of the central... 

Opinion researchers: Amersfoort, see artists more as business cards!

Amersfoort is investing in culture again. This is very good news after a period when cuts dominated. So now it becomes extra interesting what the city will do with the extra money. Some research is already under way. Last week, another study was added from an unexpected source. The main outcome: Amersfoort could be a bit prouder... 

European Cultural Foundation seeks new imagination on anniversary.

'Nothing can make up for the past. But the real, enduring power of the past lies in how it affects our present and our future. What we can do is shape a future history in which we consciously and determinedly carry with us only the best of our past.' Not keep rooting, but cognitive behavioural therapy for the whole of Europe, you might... 

Joy of life and icy constriction. Ensemble Modern performs striking world premieres by female composers during November Music

Ensemble Modern presents world premieres by German-Dutch Iris ter Schiphorst and Turkish Zeynep Gedizlioğlu in November Music. And that is good news, because the female composer remains too often invisible even in 2019. In the brochures of any Dutch orchestra, you will find none, or only a single work by a woman. On the new Heart & Soul list of... 

'I hope we will all slip into another world.' Calliope Tsoupaki writes Bosch Requiem 'Liknon' for November Music

In 1988, Calliope Tsoupaki (1963) came to the Netherlands from Greece to study composition with Louis Andriessen. Exactly 30 years later, she was appointed 'Composer of the Fatherland'. In that capacity, she has already composed some highly topical pieces. When Notre Dame de Paris caught fire on 15 April, Tsoupaki immediately climbed into the pen. Five days later... 

Striking: Amersfoort subsidises sports event with culture money

Amersfoort has some catching up to do when it comes to culture. Festivals like Spoffin, for instance, have no money to pay real fees for performing artists. So they are there with the name recognition as a reward. The same is not true for tennis players, it turns out. Indeed, Amersfoort's alderman for sports decided to enrich this year's atp tennis tournament with a €50,000 subsidy to, for instance,... 

'Groningen has an open arts climate'

An artist creates something - but for whom and why? How does the created thing relate to society and what role does that creation want to play in it? Besides all the theatre performances at Noorderzon, there is also the critical question: 'What is actually the point of theatre?' Can art fraternise people? That's not so easy. Take theatre-goers. They are rather alike.... 

Why Noorderzon's opening performance is a gem

Some critics thought the opening performance of Festival Noorderzon in Groningen was so bad it made you cry. Others were less negative. Those certainly have a point. But then you have to look beyond what you are used to. When Bear, the hero of Noorderzon 2019's opening show, is imprisoned in a tower, he laments his fate through an eloquent yet sad... 

'Playing a game is fun, especially if it's a sneaky game.' What is Yan Duyvendak doing at Noorderzon with his audience?

Armed only with instructions, consisting of a short scenario and witness accounts from previous participants, you and up to 11 others carry out a number of sneaky tasks. On the street. Exactly what these subtle disruptions of the everyday are will remain a secret until the performance begins. It promises to be one of the most special projects at Festival Noorderzon, which runs from 15 to... 

'When you bring back the songs, you bring back the people, you bring back everything'. Why Amsterdam Roots should be proud of coming Jeremy Dutcher.

28-year-old Jeremy Dutcher is a sensation. With his reinterpretation of native songs by Canadian Indians, he won the Canadian equivalent of the Grammy last year; names like Arcade Fire, Feist and Kaytranada preceded him. Amsterdam Roots Festival is now bringing award-winning Canadian musician Jeremy Dutcher to the Netherlands for a performance at the Bimhuis on 10 July 2019. When... 

Pipi Longstocking rules in Zwolle. (Why everyone who cares about learning should go to Festival Woest)

Put 15 or so bouncy balls from the first grade of primary VMBO in an antique cabin of a few square metres and you can be sure there will be a hundred of them. Music they will make and they themselves had thought it should be about a forest. Protoon's accompanist is going to arrange that for them. There are pads ready,... 

At Festival Woest, young people figure out for themselves how they want to play life (Why you can't avoid Zwolle in early June)

Woest is a cultural education festival for and by young people and offers a place for experimentation outside education. Woest is a unique partnership between education, culture providers and young people. In fact, what makes Woest unique is that young people themselves come up with new things that can make education more fun and better. The pupil's voice is always the starting point. In recent months,... 

'There's a limit to crowdfunding, you can only do it twice' - Growing pains of the dance film, part 2

The dance film occupies a unique place among the film offerings. Not driven purely by psychologising or text, it offers every opportunity for experimentation in form and content. But that also means it is difficult to place. And therefore difficult to make. The second part on the growing pains of the dance film features 2 dancers and performance artist.... 

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