Scapino Ballet Rotterdam – a phenomenon to be experienced, not read about. But now you’re here, we’d like to tell you a little about ourselves.
Scapino lives dance, breathes dance, is dance. But when the company began, it didn’t set out with the aim of creating and performing dance. Scapino was founded in 1945 by Hans Snoek. She (yes, Hans was a woman) dreamt of ‘bringing colour back to the cheeks of children after the war.’ And it’s because of her belief in the power of dance to make that happen, that Scapino came to be. The drive to bring change through dance – to bring joy, life, colour – still moves us today.
Scapino believes that artistic achievement only has value when it’s experienced by others. And for Scapino, those others aren’t just people who understand dance. Our productions are made for everyone. Even people who’ve never seen a dance performance in their lives. Scapino may be one of the largest dance companies in Holland, with some of the world’s best dancers and choreographers, but we’re not what you’d call ‘established’. The productions created by Ed Wubbe and many young choreographers are too daring, too innovative and perhaps too good at entertaining, for that. We’re not chic, we’re not quiet – we’re bright, vibrant, and spunky. We don’t want to be admired. We want to conquer.
Scapino’s productions offer people a way to experience something about the world we live in. And we stop at nothing to do it – many of our productions are incredibly theatrical. We take inspiration from other performing arts, too. Our spirit of adventure steers us into uncharted waters, where we make new discoveries. Such as collaborations with circus artistes, a famous pop group, an opera company and performances in an abandoned gasometer.
We created Scapino Academy to develop the talent of young dancers and choreographers, and show people how to learn with and from dance. We offer a wide variety of workshops and activities for schools, clubs, companies, community centres and art centres. Our goal: to inspire children, young people and adults, fuel their creativity and develop their talents, and encourage them to think and communicate through movement. We partner with the charity Dance for Health, that improves the quality of life of Parkinson sufferers, through dance. We also work with the Child Diabetes Expertise Centre in Zeeland, providing dance and movement workshops to children and youth with diabetes.
Scapino is in a process of constant self-renewal. Change is our way of life. That’s why we feel so at home in Rotterdam, a city in perpetual change, and why we are proud to be the city dance company of this metropolis.