WOW-EFFECT joins the discussion on Nijmegen’s cultural future

Nijmegen is a hotspot for cultural initiatives. Many organizations, young artists and amateur groups– including WOW-EFFECT– receive support from the local government. But a question remains: Is there still room for improvement? Join us in the first Cultuursalon on December 6th, as we talk with Lindenberg’s new director Teddy Vrijmoet about last season’s collaboration.

A great collaboration with Lindenberg

Around this time last year, WOW-EFFECT received some incredible news: among a number of amateur groups, WE had been chosen by Lindenberg Huis voor de Kunsten to be their first in-house theater group for the entire season 2017–2018.

The opportunity not only meant we were granted a nice rehearsal space and stage for free; it also meant we received valuable supervision on directing, light design and marketing, to achieve our learning goals, set as part of the collaboration.

WE are still shaking off the last stardust of this great opportunity, and are forever grateful for it. Sadly though, Lindenberg’s initiative was a pilot project, and it is not sure whether they will be able to offer it again in a near future.

New season, new challenges

Soon, our memories of last year will start to fade. Every season means new challenges of attracting new members, finding a rehearsal space and financing a new project– while offering enough opportunities for our volunteers to develop.

In this challenging and highly competitive environment, establishing long-term strategies depends not only on us, but also on how much support we can get from the city, or from collaboration with other organizations.

Changing the scene

Under the city’s ‘chain managers’ system, institutions such as Doornroosje, Museum Het Valkhof and the Library receive subsidies to encourage cultural initiatives. It’s the system that partly allowed our collaboration with Lindenberg.

It’s also a system that leaves unanswered questions. Do young and prospect artists and institutions know how to find each other? Are the collaborations as good as can they can be, or could they be better?

Now, the city’s new alderman Noël Vergunst is challenging the system, by raising some of these questions. With new changes to Nijmegen’s cultural policies in the coming years, he’s asking everyone to contribute with their ideas and suggestions.

The first Cultuursalon

The joint organization of Ugenda and Cultuur op de Campus brings WOW-EFFECT Theater on stage, along with bigger institutions like Doornroosje, De Lindenberg, De Nieuwe Oost, Gelderland-Zuid library and Ugenda.

The audience will be able to give their suggestions at the end of the event. Suggestions will then be collected and handed as direct feedback to alderman Vergunst, who will also be present.

WE were invited to come and talk about last year’s collaboration with Lindenberg together with their new director Teddy Vrijmoet and presenter Ruud Vos, unpacking the value that such collaborations can offer. It’s a fantastic opportunity to be part of this important discussion.

‘Do you dream of an art city?’

The event takes place on Thursday December 6th. Most talks are in Dutch, but our part will of course be in English.

If you too want to learn about Nijmegen’s cultural opportunities and even participate in the discussion yourself, the event starts at 16.00 and WE’ll speak about ten minutes later.

There will also be performances with poetry and music, and the evening will be rounded up with drinks.


When? Thursday 6 December
What time? Doors open 15.30 and program is from 16.00–17.30. Drinks afterwards
Where? Elinor Ostrom building, Heyendaalseweg 141, Theater C
How much? Nothing, free entrance and open for all!
More info? On their Facebook event

This blog article is written by Tulya Kavaklioglu and Alexandra Granberg.