Dear beloved friend
22 mrt20:00 - 21:20TR25 Schouwburg, RotterdamGrote Zaal
They will come, they will have no choice, they will come in their tens of thousands, in their millions.
With a sense of growing unease, Dries Verhoeven read about a future African refugee influx and the continent's expected birth explosion. “Where will this enormous group of people go in the predicted post-apocalyptic world?”
Verhoeven went to do his research and flew to the Nigerian city of Lagos, which is rapidly becoming the world’s largest city in an already densely populated country. As the problems pile up, he discovered a people bursting with energy and utopian thinking. Clearly, the apocalypse is not in fashion there. It’s hard to imagine a starker contrast with European fears. Are Nigerians fantasising against their better judgement? Or are we in Europe too fixated on the past?
Dear beloved friend is a live film performance. Straight from Nollywood, the heart of the African film industry, Kininso Koncepts' incandescent performers enact our European nightmares. Via a live internet connection they address us in our comfortable theatre seats. Provocative, disruptive, and inescapable, like the future itself.
About Dries Verhoeven
Artist and theatre maker Dries Verhoeven creates performances that are both challenging and deeply human. He brings the inner worlds of people who are far beyond the theatre walls intimately close
Verhoeven is a master at finding the right format for the right subject (…) a feat of technical virtuosity (…) a road trip about people fleeing misery in search of a long-vanished paradise.
Hein Janssen in de Volkskrant
Verhoeven deeply affects us by immersing us in unforgettable experiences. (…) young, self-assured, energetic Black Africans mock us, and how we see ourselves.
Joost Ramaer on Theaterkrant.nl
It is one of his most politically-engaged productions, depicting a mass exodus from one continent and another continent struggling to cope with the influx. (…) apart from its political relevance, Dear Beloved Friend also urges us to detox from social media once in a while, and reset our brains.
Hein Janssen in de Volkskrant
Throughout the performance, we hear a voice-over describing the life of an average European. Someone who consumes the news, checks his phone, and muddles along. Despite his concerns about the world, all he does is donate to charity and have recurring nightmares about a party where he doesn't recognise anyone. All of this paints a critical portrait of the decadence, hypocrisy, and fever dreams of the Westerner.
Marijn Lems in NRC
"I came here with plans to make a work about migration because I’d read an article about an imminent African exodus, but one of the group's performers said: 'You all seem to be going through a midlife crisis. You're looking at tomorrow with apprehension, and are filled with nostalgia for yesterday.' Their faith in the future contrasts with our desire to cling to the past."
Lorianne van Gelder (Het Parool) interviewed Dries Verhoeven during the making of Dear beloved friend, (4 March 2023)
"The performers briefly flip things on their head. The moment they pull on the masks, they’re making fun of white people. ‘Can we please do a send-up of that white guy,’ they said to me, ‘because we see so many stereotypes of ourselves.'"
Lotje IJzermans interviewed Dries Verhoeven in VPRO's Nooit Meer Slapen
concept en regie Dries Verhoeven creatief producent Joshua Alabi performance Ayoola Odubona, Israel Efosa Okpoko, Olorunniyi Zion Praise, Uche Enechukwu, Uche Kingsley Mborogwu dramaturgie Miguel Melgares regieassistentie Casper Wortmann, Naomi Steijger techniek Roel Evenhuis, Jeremiah Anthony Irabor, Titus Duitshof, Bolaji Afolabi Rilwan geluidsontwerp Peer Thielen geluid Adebayo Habib Olaore licht Biokorogha Tumbra, Anthony Monday voice over Moshood Fattah internet techniek Bart van de Woestijne internet Nigeria Omotayo Charles Ogunfeibo video Adedire Badejo, Blessing Olalekan Okunola, Abiola Semiu Peter, Samuel Abaji set Athanasius Akojuru media runner Ebenezer Obiji welzijn Olubanke Oyeniyi chauffeurs Dare Oshoniyi, Adekunle Adesanya uitvoerende productie ’n More – Lise van den Hout & Ellen van Bunnik & Kininso Koncepts – Angela Peters & Emmanuel Anya productie Studio Dries Verhoeven & Kininso Koncepts kantoor Kininso Koncepts administratie manager Chinenye Chukwudi, assistent administratie manager Oloyede Aribilola, communicatie Aniefiok Inyang, copy writer Oluchukwu Ukachukwu, wettelijk vertegenwoordiger Praise Alabi
Dear beloved friend, wordt mede mogelijk gemaakt door Fonds Podiumkunsten, Gemeente Utrecht, Prins Bernhard Cultuurfonds, Dioraphte, Stimuleringsfonds Creatieve Industrie, Fonds 21 en de Nederlandse ambassade in Nigeria.