This is who we are, THIS is H:OURS

On Friday 28 October the Academy of Theatre and Dance (ATD) students will be taking over the entire school, with performances for you to see and experience that have been conceived and made entirely by the students themselves. And it’s all coming together under the title THIS is H:OURS.

 ‘This is hours’ refers to the period of fourteen hours for which director Jan Zoet turns the school over to the students. During this period the students are free to show what they can do, and to show it in their own way – no demands from the school and no assessment by teachers. Total responsibility for organising the event has been handed over to a small team of students who are in charge of the big picture. Second-year Production and Stage Management (OPP) student Kas Pijs is on the team and leading the main production on the day itself: ‘What we want to do most is create places in the school where people can come together. That’s the running theme this year. So, for example, there could be a lounge, or speed dating, or you might be walking down the corridor and suddenly get taken off somewhere. Of course there’ll also be student-made performances that have nothing at all to do with this ‘encounter’ theme. Everyone is completely free to make what he or she wants to make.

Kick off during HALf6
There’s going to be a kick-off event in the school for it on 27 September, a special HALf6 Edition. From then on, students will be able to sign up their piece and let us know where they’d like to perform it and what they need to do it. Anyone who doesn’t already have an idea of what they want to do will be able to find other people to work with at the kick-off event.’

Kas is keen to stress that this festival is all about giving students the chance to show who they really are – to each other, to school staff, to the rest of the Amsterdam University of the Arts, to family and friends, and to the local neighbourhood. ‘This is who we are, this is h:ours,’ he says, ‘That’s the message we want to project. It’s great that this year we’ve got a stage for music, where people can play solo or as part of a group, whether or not it’s accompanied by dance or theatre. Our ultimate goal is for all students to be involved in the day in one way or another. If it’s all going to be coordinated properly, student programmers will need to be in direct contact with the performance and make sure they get assigned studio space, for example. And this year we’re going to produce a block timetable so that instead of everyone rushing about trying to find things, they can go directly to performances if they want. From about 12 o’clock onwards the school’s doors will be open so anyone can walk in to discover all the students’ free, experimental work!”

The team of student organisers is still pretty small, but that’s all going to change. They’re on the lookout for reinforcements to contribute to the central part of the day – the opening and the encounter activities – as well as students wanting to take on a programming role. If you’re interested please contact

The THIS is H:OURS Facebook page is at: – there’s also a private group for everyone involved in the event.