Dood Paard

Amsterdam, Netherlands

Dood Paard is an Amsterdam based theatre collective. In the 20 years since Dood Paard was founded, this theatre collective has developed its own style of theatre. First and foremost, Dood Paard’s approach is an expression of how its members work together and how they perceive the world around them. It can most easily be characterised through tangible components such as Kuno Bakker’s logo-like poster designs, the group’s montage approach to set and costume design, and the actors’ openness to their live audience. But Dood Paard’s theatre is actually the expression of a mentality that has everything to do with autonomy, and each performance is an explicit attempt on the part of the actors to relate to the world in the here and now. In a Dood Paard play, group behaviour is a matter of clearly signalled agreements: the actors continually change their clothes, they pretend that they are having a meeting, they make the audience feel as welcome as possible, and they never leave the stage. But in each production, and behind each pair of costume glasses, the actors always remain tangibly, visibly, individual personalities. Every action taken and line spoken is directed at sharpening the actor-maker’s mind, and by extension the spectator’s. Whether it is a play by Shakespeare, a script by Rob de Graaf or a self-assembled text, the questions being posed remain the same: what do we know, what is our situation and what do we think?

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