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Night-time silence walk with Schiphol hatred to close Holland Festival 2021

Admittedly, I was never a fan, but how I hated those planes last night. I was walking through a dark, nocturnal forest between Lage Vuursche and Hilversum. Where, in the silence, I could have listened extra carefully to creaking twigs, shuffling insects, whispering trees and the occasional owl, I mostly heard how happy we all are that after corona we have another... 

ITA leaves exactly the wrong things to the imagination in Age of Rage. #HF21

In Electra, one of the finest tragedies handed down to us by the ancient Greeks, there is at least one piece of text that made history. It is the account of a horse race. You see nothing, but the language puts your imagination to work. 25 centuries later, they tried to turn the images described into real images for the... 

Arnold Schoenberg sounds out of an endearing piece of kindergarten drama. #HF21

There is a direct, inverse, link between musical talent and acting ability. The techniques needed to play a musical instrument are completely different from the registers you need - physically and mentally - for acting. So the better you master your instrument, the worse the acting. The musicians of Klangforum Wien master their instrument at the very, very... 

The myth of Europe, you need a Greek for that anyway (and a better theatre) #hf21

'...this (final) image, in which really I saw what I never saw before. That was so insane where I started to doubt my own perception. Interesting sensation that for me is separate from interpretation.' I quote here a visitor I know from the performance Transverse Orientation, one of the toppers of this year's Holland Festival. She was sitting three metres... 

Learning and moving: The Planet, a lament by Garin Nugroho. #HF21

Some art you don't quite understand, but touches you deeply. Paradjanov's films, for instance, or The Planet, a Lament by Garin Nugroho. Nugroho has chosen not to provide his performance with surtitles, so your rational brain has to be sidetracked for a while. What are they singing, what exactly is happening, what is it about? After a few minutes of this same... 

Between Past and Future. Frank Scheffer films a fruitful meeting between East and West #HF21

Saturday 26 June at the Holland Festival, a special evening around two music films by Frank Scheffer: the documentary Inner Landscape and the opera film Si Fan. Supplemented by a short live performance by Chinese musician Wu Wei. This will present a musical journey from the seventh-century Tang Dynasty to contemporary electronic music. An evening with unexpected perspectives.

The bands were dead, but Kukangendai breathes life into everything. Be it inimitable. #HF21

Someone cried the other day that bands were dead. That in a world of digital convenience, loop apps and samples, there was no place left for boys and girls with a guitar, a rickety drum kit and possibly a piano. Last night, while real men were watching football, I sat in Amsterdam's BIM house watching a band. It made me overjoyed. Kukangendai, on... 

Unheimlich and intriguing: Kindertotenlieder by Gisèle Vienne #HF21

A boy is a guest at his own funeral where a black metal band is playing a funeral concert. The killer, his best friend, is also there, along with anonymous black metal fans. The light is harsh, there is snow on the ground. To the right at the side of the stage, a wall has been built with crates of beer, to the left is what I am in... 

To blaat or not to blaat. FC Bergman puts the sheep on a nice pedestal in The Sheep Song #HF21

Those blessed with the surname 'sheep' not only know that they come from a rich and honourable lineage, but also know by heart all the proverbs, sayings and name jokes, offensive or otherwise. Up to and including comradely blathering chiefs of art. Then the fact that Flemish theatre company FC Bergman is producing a show titled 'The Sheep... 

La Codista is an endearing ode to waiting, with a fine layer underneath #HF21

It is always nice to know that someone is waiting for you. Companies offering rare things, officials who have highly sought-after stamps to put up, all owe their happiness and income to people willing to wait for them. Waiting itself, of course, is also something you can build a life around. There are people... 

Ine Aya: Wodan's state visit to Kalimantan raises quite a few questions #HF21

After three centuries of colonial oppression and exploitation, it is now pay-back time. However, we, the progeny of the navy that came to get nutmeg there, are not so good at it. Because we come back to Indonesia with mass tourism, cheap clothing dyers and multinationals like Unilever. We do little else but drain the place further. Economically, but also culturally. This can be subject... 

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