Theater maker and historian Eveline van Rijswijk (1988) decided in December to give her performance End of story to be canceled definitively before the premiere. Now she is looking for other forms to bring her stories to the fore.
What are you running into?
“I didn’t get that creative from that first corona year. No one had been vaccinated yet, so I thought: what is so urgent that I ask people to come to the theater, and thus actually be in danger? That created enormous pressure: it had to be a real masterpiece.
„At the end of 2020 I just had a number of try-outs of End of story done when everything suddenly closed for four months. Then I consciously decided to postpone the performance for a whole year. Then everyone can be vaccinated, then it must be possible to continue. Waiting until September seemed too early to me, I really wanted to take it easy. But then at the end of November I saw that things were going wrong again and I thought: I have to take control into my own hands. My agency suggested that I move the performance again, but I didn’t want to wait any longer. That makes you so dependent. So I decided to pull the plug completely. I also see the irony in it: my first performance was called The premiere, and the second End of story. That is now my theater oeuvre.”
How are you now?
“I’m worried about the future. A year ago I thought: in a year I can perform again. Now I really don’t know when it will go back to normal. Maybe we’ll be fine with this for a few more winters, maybe there will be new pandemics.
“I don’t want to make any more promises I can’t keep. I am a lateral entrant in the theater sector, I have other work from which I generate income. That makes it feel like others have more right to a spot on the podium than I do. I think it will be a few more years before I’m back in the theater.”
What are bright spots?
“I’ve always done many different things at once and that might be my salvation now. I find that very resigned: when the reservoir of performances by other makers is soon removed, I will stick my head around the corner again to see if there is room for me.”
What are you looking forward to in 2022?
„There are a number of themes in the performance – for example how we deal with changes and farewells – that lend themselves well to other forms. I’m going to make a podcast, I can release songs and a collection of poems. In any case, I have decided to make things that will definitely continue.”
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