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Henri Drost

Nerd podcast 3: Why is youth theatre often so much stronger than theatre for big people? (With Marijn Lems and Henri Drost)

Today we are talking about youth theatre. A genre I myself first encountered in 1994, thanks to 'Mirad, een jongen uit Bosnië' by Ad de Bont, performed by Theatergroep Wederzijds. Marijn Lems got his love for youth theatre from his mother, who, like his father, was a librarian in Tilburg. What we agree on, in this podcast, the... 

Why I am suddenly hugely in favour of live music in any theatre performance.

I went to Rotterdam Zuid to see Shakespeare. The play was called Cleopatra and someone had tried to turn it into a feminist manifesto. That is something like making a rhinoceros jump through a hoop: the British bard relates to feminism as Thierry Baudet relates to Greta Thunberg. So it had not succeeded, and the reviewer of... 

Panic is contagious, sex is not. About my anxious hours during and after Sex and Anxiety at the @hollandfestival.

Panic. On the tram between Leidseplein and Amsterdam Centraal, I suddenly lost the Dutch translation of 'string quartet'. So I typed 'violin quartet' into my facebook update, trying to make a connection between a blow job and Ligeti. Joking, perhaps, but there was something much deeper behind it, in that tram, after the music and theatre event 'The String Quartet's... 

Our only unique @hollandfestivalspecial #2: inspiration and constriction in the first week #hf18

Our Thea Derks sat watching a traffic light for a few hours on Thursday 7 June and observed that the music was better. It happened during the opening of the 2018 Holland Festival. In the tradition of Ruth Mackenzie, the opening was of mixed reception, and that is actually a good thing. Even at a time when the Amsterdam Arts Council is in a... 

Ruth Mackenzie's latest Holland Festival promises to be just one of the most exciting

Here it is. The one and only interactive Culture Press Holland Festival Special. A special that has already been deployed over the past few months, and will be added to in the coming month. During the festival, we have regular reviews and reports, and podcasts. A new edition of this Special will appear every week. On Mondays. And then you can also subscribe via... 

Opera The New Prince: pretentious bombast

It is not easy to visit an opera presented as a stunning piece of contemporary social criticism without fear. Especially when it evokes such totally different reactions. Some call The New Prince 'an opera on the vein of our own time' (Mischa Spel, NRC), while others give it 'a fat fail' (Erik Voermans, Het Parool). Another needs more... 

Culture Council fill-in exercise offers hardly any surprises

Champagne at BAK in Utrecht, deep disappointment at The New Institute in Rotterdam: the Council for Culture has spoken. Today, Thursday 19 May 2016, the first advice after the draconian art cuts by the first Rutte cabinet came out, and heads are rolling. Amsterdam loses prestigious presentation institution De Appel, in The Hague fellow institution Stroom has to redo its homework. The Orkest van het Oosten and the Gelders Orkest have to come up with merger plans within two years. In Utrecht, the city company Theater Utrecht will no longer receive funding despite artistic appreciation. Het Zuidelijk Toneel in Eindhoven Tilburg must make new plans and Opera Zuid must quickly raise its artistic quality. These are the main conclusions of the Culture Council's opinion.

As dramatic as some of this may sound, the advice is actually not, when you look over the whole battlefield. Thanks in part to

Van Veen (vvd), Pechtold (d66) and Monasch (pvda) during the culture budget debate

We were read in 2015: 300,000 visitors, a total of 10,000 hours of reading time.

Time for our success list. In 2015, we attracted 60,000 more visitors than in 2014. That's something to be proud of. A website that focuses on the stories that existing media find the small, and then figures like that. That we attracted those 300,000 visitors is one, that they spent an average of 2 and a half minutes per story,... 

The seven performances you must see this Holland Festival

As Big as the Sky I am looking forward to Arnoud Noordegraaf's new multimedia project, As Big as the Sky, with sets by Ai Wei Wei. Noordegraaf is a master at blurring the boundaries between film and reality. His music is elegant and appealing and serves the story. As Big as the Sky, op... 

Lesson 1 for 2015: don't make your annual lists too early

Last weekend, we thought we were on the safe side with our list of best-read stories on Culture Press. True to old media laws, we thought the days between Christmas and New Year's would be quiet. Aber nein. It turned out there was another list on the way, which turned the whole thing upside down. Instead of 235 thousand interested readers... 

La bohème 2: verismo of the highest order

After the premiere of Puccini's perhaps most beloved opera La bohème at De Nationale Opera last Thursday, critics were divided in their reaction. Trouw praised conductor Roberto Palumbo, who 'can maximise Puccini's masterful effects', Place de l'Opéra chided the Italian for taking 'too much freedom in the phrasing of the melodies'. Culture Press colleague Henri Drost did not keep it dry 

Two voices on Sunken Garden @HollandFestival, part 1. Henri Drost: "much more than 3D film opera"

Holland Festival Holland Festival

Forget all the fuss about the first ever 3D film opera, forget all the fuss in British newspapers. Michel van der Aa himself sighed in interview that, on reflection, he would have loved to have made the second 3D film opera. And perhaps he had

Culture Press ratings: thick 300,000 minutes of attention

With paper, you never know ('0.3% of newspaper readers read the reviews on the art page'), and with TV it's always a bit of estimating and extrapolating too, but the internet is rock hard. We know how many times you read one of our pieces, and how long you lingered at our videos. Well: we were already proud last year, now we are well over 200,000

Die Zeit comes up with text from porn poem Frederick the Great. But we are earlier.

Update: the poem in question was not meant to convince Voltaire of the Prussian thrust, but an Italian, Francesco Alegerotti. A scrabeus poem by Frederick the Great has surfaced. A poem, whose existence but content was unknown. Until now, that is. Today, the German quality magazine Die Zeit comes out with the full text. And Bild Zeitung has... 

A few solid misses, interspersed with plenty of indispensable beauty in week 3 of the Holland Festival #hf11

The Dodo was busy, this third week of the Holland Festival. Thankfully, again with an exciting mix of beautiful, weird and extraordinary. As it should be, really. What makes the Holland Festival all the more exciting is that such extremes can sometimes take place within one programme, as with the National Ballet, or even within one performance, as with The Russians... 

Week two of the Holland Festival (#HF11) brings a nice mix of highlights and questionable choices.

Dat de Off Broadway-musical Fela! Een succes was, konden we eigenlijk wel verwachten. Voor De Dodo hebben we er daarom ook niemand heen gestuurd: er zijn al genoeg kranten en andere bloggers die graag bij de New Yorkse publiekslievelingen op de eerste rang willen zitten. Dat ze een goede tijd hadden, leest u elders op deze site, via de blogstream… 

The Dodo revives for Holland Festival edition 2011 #HF11

This week the Holland Festival erupts and we are there. We are producing a Dodo Festival Day newspaper with a sizeable team of professional journalists, as we did before for Springdance and The International Choice of the Rotterdam Schouwburg, for example. We follow the festival closely to bring news as it happens. We go to see performances where others... 

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