Betontanc & Jonghollandia

A democratic answer against weapons of mass seduction

Betontanc and Jonghollandia are making a performance about power and manipulation in the form of a congress, on which they discuss Silvio Berlusconi.

What should we do with Mr. Berlusconi? We create a fiction-faction story out of the life of a postmodern politician, a phenomenon in 21th century European society.

“In this world I only see dwarfs. A lot of dwarfs. Giants I don’t see. Except for myself.” Silvio Berlusconi

A performance about miracles, an authoritative modern media regime, about football, good food, democracy, television shows, porn politics, Europe, great style and bad taste, all of this mixed with Italo-disco, Italian b-movie soundtracks, and great Tarantella vibes.

“I don’t need to go into office for the power. I have houses all over the world, stupendous boats… beautiful airplanes, a beautiful wife, a beautiful family… I am making a sacrifice.” Silvio Berlusconi

Betontanc and Jonghollandia work together on this project. Now that the European Union has been enlarged with ten new member states, the question arises whether there is something like a common European cultural identity. What kind of theatre is being made in these new member states? What are the similarities and what are the differences? To what extent is our theatre style determined by our history?

Jonghollandia commented their decision:

“After several meetings in Ljubljana and Eindhoven, we decided to work together with Betontanc. The way they make theatre is much more physical than the way we do it. They have existed since 1990. Initially, they were mainly involved in theatre of movement. The name ‘Betontanc’ means ‘clumsy concrete dance’. The word concrete is used because their first rehearsal room was a concrete cellar.”

We focus on the person of Silvio Berlusconi. This theme is attractive because it is a topical issue for both groups. Everywhere in Europe, including Slovenia and the Netherlands, we see a political swing to the right. Silvio Berlusconi is the most talked-about European politician of the moment. His person says something about the development of democracy in Europe, in the new Europe, which both Betontanc and Jonghollandia are part of. The Europe of commercialisation and populism, but also the Europe of looking for an utopian unity.

We are looking for a personal way of dealing with this larger structure. Who are we in this larger Europe and how do leaders such as Silvio Berlusconi affect our personal lives?

We rehearse four weeks in Ljubljana and four weeks in the Netherlands. In this way we hope to combine the best two countries can offer into one piece.

Remco de Jong has composed the music. His music moves on the borderline of electronic music and techno. It is inspired by the nature and possibilities of modern computer technology. Sound and structure of the compositions always move on the extremes of the auditive spectrum: an exploration beyond the borders of techno, electro and jazz.


  • Created and performed by: Walter Bart, Primož Bezjak, Wine Dierickx, Daša Doberšek, Matijs Jansen, Branko Jordan, Matjaž Pograjc, Maartje Remmers, Marleen Scholten, Katarina Stegnar
  • Sound design and composition: Remco de Jong
  • Light and set design: Maarten van Otterdijk
  • Costumes: Mateja Benedetti, Joke Sommen
  • Technicians: Tomaž Štrucl, Jean-Lou Caglar
  • Technical assistence: Igor Remeta, Daan Klootwijk
  • Lights: Bart Verzellenberg
  • Editing: Richard Rosser
  • Video: Dirk Eijsbouts, Maarten Blom
  • Production: Ira Cecić, Jasper Willems
  • Business manager: Monique van Beek
  • Public relations:: Ira Cecić, Jantine Hoekstra (ZT Hollandia)
  • Graphic design: Boris Benko (Phant&Puntza)
  • Photography: Fred Debrock
  • Thanks to: Bojana Leskovar, Mojca Širok, Chiara Comandi, Milan Jordan

Photo: Fred Debrock
Video: Bunker archive
Editors: Gregor Gobec, Urška Boljkovac

additional informations


3rd and 4th November 2004, Rotterdamse Schouwburg, Rotterdam


  • World premiere: 5th November 2004, Rotterdamse Schouwburg, Rotterdam
  • Slovene premiere: 30th November 2004, Stara mestna elektrarna – Elektro Ljubljana

Past performances:

  • 6th November 2004, Rotterdamse Schouwburg, Rotterdam
  • 7th November 2004, Rotterdamse Schouwburg, Rotterdam
  • 16th to 19th November 2004, Verkadefabriek, Den Bosch
  • 23rd to 25th November 2004, Theater aan het Vrijthof / Uitbalie, Internationale Theaterdagen, Maastricht
  • 1st to 5th December 2004, Stara mestna elektrarna – Elektro Ljubljana

Blaž Lukan: Everybody against Berlusconi, Delo
Blaž Lukan: Whom to Kill?, Delo
Jaša Kramaršič Kacin: Everybody for Berlusconi, Mladina
Karin Veraart: Berlusconi must die! Vote in favour!, De Volksrant, 5. 11. 2004
Jowi Schmitz: Audience wants to see Berlusconi killed, NRC Handelsblad, 5. 11. 2004
Hans van Dam: Passionate acting with political assassination, Rotterdams Dagblad, 6. 11. 2004
Wouter Hillaert: ‘Paradise’ after the Wall came down, De Morgen, 13. 11. 2004

Tehnical requirements