Archives for category: dialogue

Although shown through the lens of male intimacy, the feeling Vassiliou and the performers tries to channel is something that is beyond sexuality or gender: the beatitude of total absorption in another being.’
Rachel Donnelly / blog Dublin Dance Festival

Alexis Vassiliou – a series of three
In 2013, choreographer Alexis Vassiliou started his research on the connection between physical sensations and the emotional en relational consequences of that. In every performance he took one clear physical action, turned that upside down and inside out, and used it to evoke a range of associations and emotions, for the performers as well as for spectators. The diffused intimacy and playfulness that arose between the male performers became tangible for the audience.

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photo: Marquis Palmer

On October 4, 2015, the second part of the duet Please me Please will premiere during the Dutch Dance Festival.

Liat Waysbort investigates our need to please with two older dancers, Amy Gale and Angela Linssen. In Please me Please – The Duet, two bodies full of history are confronted with the standards which the ‘older person’ is supposed to meet. The production questions our definition of beauty – precisely, explosively and tenderly – with the objective of stretching that definition. ‘Liat Waysbort previously had an impact with the strong and very individual Please me Please – The Solo, danced by the young Ivan Ugrin. In contrast to his youth, Waysbort now goes on an adventure with two self-assured women who each, in their own way, embody an aspect of the history of Dutch dance. That makes one curious.

choreography: Liat Waysbort
dance: Amy Gale, Angela Linssen
dramaturgy: Annette van Zwoll
producer: Bitter Sweet Dance
co producer: Dansmakers Amsterdam
production: Jannita Jáuregui
light and technique: Mark Thewessen

photo CaDance: Maarten Evenhuis

The coming two weeks you can enjoy exciting dance premieres at the festival for modern dance CaDance in the Hague. With  sparkling new dance by up-and-coming talents and leading choreographers in the Netherlands. This 17th edition takes place from 30 January until 15 February 2015.

Check the programme at and pay special attention to the performance texts that I wrote. And on Sunday, February 1, I will lead the after talk after the performance Rise Up of Guilherme Miotto.

Let’s Talk About Gender Baby!
Column Mikki Stelder / October 3 2014 / Dutch Dance Dialogues / Maastricht

“Do we still need to talk about gender in dance and performance?” This is a question I hear very often.
The still in this question implies a certain fatigue. It presumes that the topic has been exhausted. That we have witnessed significant changes over the decades both on and off-stage. Instead of asking the question “do we still need to talk about gender in dance?” I am inspired by a song from the artist Planningtorock that I send to my students before the first day of class “let’s talk about gender baby!”

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Dutch Dance Dialogues 2014 / photo: Antoinette Mooy

Festival De  Nederlandse Dansdagen (Dutch Dance Festival) is almost coming up and they’ve asked me to organize the Dutch Dance Dialogues; a biennial programme to boost the dialogue within the Dutch dance field. This years themes are: Dance & Fashion (in relation to the projects (OLD)Fashion(ed) and Distinguished Dreams) and Dance & Gender (in relation to the European project Performing Gender). Speakers include, among others, fashion journalist Aynouk Tan, Lecturer cultural studies Bibi Straatman, director Gender Bender Festival Daniele Del Pozzo, Roberto Casarotto of the B-Motion Festival in Italy, several choreographers like Connor Schumacher and Juan Arques and many more.

You can be there as well! There is cake and coffee. Check here for more info and tickets.

Design by Esther Noyons in collaboration with Serena Kloet

I put together a booklet of the most influential project  of my professional life: Act Your Age. This two year European project focussed, through dance, on the pressing global question of aging and how we deal with the older other. Choreographers of all ages, the elderly community from the Netherlands, Cyprus and Italy, researchers, policy makers and practitioners in the medical field all came together to constructively and innovatively contribute to the discussion about aging and the depiction of the older body. The project has come to an end, but its influences stretches into the future. This booklet contains a collection of articles  on the project and beautiful pictures and you can receive it for free! Just send an e-mail to with your address.

And oh, the website has been updated as well! Have a look at

We want to see women ruling the conversation in the media. We all know them; smart, intelligent, funny women, with enlightening perspectives and a superb choice of words. From a Facebook request to propose names of women who should be invited for the Dutch yearly programme Zomergasten (‘Summer guests’), a list was made with almost 100 names with names of:

(interesting women you can easily invite to a talkshow or something like that).

And a selection of 30 women that was sent to Zomergasten.

 Photo: Melanie Hofmann

On May 23rd, after the performance The Stages of Staging of choreographer Alexandra Bachzetsis, I moderated a debate on the concept of Self Design at SPRING festival. Together with Alexandra, reality television producers Ellen Schutten and Maarten Eysink Smeets, art critic and writer Simon van den Berg and the audience we talked about how we present and shape ourselves to the outside eye through various media. Even an hour felt to short and the debate continued at the bar.

Interested in the topic? Read Simon van den Bergs article on the topic in relation to The Stages of Staging here.

The debate was organized in the frame of the project De Vuurlinie and hosted by SPRING Utrecht.

 Photo: Vincent Wijlhuizen

The older person is not frail, except at certain crucial and often personal moments.’
Kim Putters, director Dutch Institute for Social Research (SCP) at the opening of Act Your Age.

‘We are more aged by culture than by chromosomes.’
Ross Jennings, head of the Women, Ageing and Media Research Centre at the University of Gloucestershire in Rock On:Women, ageing and popular music.

‘From a biological perspective, we are meant to love children and we are not meant to love older people. We don’t want to be confronted with the face of old-age.’
Rudi Westendorp, director Leyden Academy on Vitality and Ageing in I am my body.

‘By doing nothing and making use of Kairos (durational, dynamic, heterogeneous) time instead of Chronos (economic) time the rest brain is activated, which is necessary to stay healthy.’
Joke Hermsen, writer and philosopher in Growing Up Mindfully, Growing Old Actively 

‘Be Bitter Chocolate.’ Marjan Berk, writer in Ageing and Practice

Read a former entry of mine about the research week in 2012.
More info on Act Your Age.

Picture: Vincent Wijlhuizen

‘Moisturizing’. This is what former porn star from the seventies and currently 76 years old Georgina Spelvin (check out her appearance in a Massive Attack video here) stated as her motto in life. The witty skype conversation with this grande dame of porn was part of the research week Act Your Age during the Nederlandse Dansdagen (Dutch Dance Days) in October in Maastricht. Read the rest of this entry »