Category Archives: Bijlmer Parktheater

Upcoming events: #BPTGembertheeSessies with José Montoya and Djuwa Mroivili

Before Bijlmer Parktheater closes its doors for a much needed Summer break, I’m organizing two editions of my beloved #BPTGembertheeSessies . It’s my absolute pleasure to turn our stage into a tea spot and to interview two artists who I deeply appreciate: actor and visual artist José Montoya & classical pianist Djuwa Mroivili. The #BPTGembertheeSessies (ginger tea sessions) is our new series where we have conversations with choreographers, directors, actors and literary geniuses. We talk about what inspires them, what brings them joy, how they continue to study their craft and where they see themselves in the artistic genealogies that they’re part of.

With their dedication to plus their understanding and study of their craft, Montoya and Mroivili are deeply inspiring to me. Thinking of what Mroivili can play and compose? Imagining Montoya embodying the characters that are an answer to our imagination? All this, makes me want to write better and more. If you’re in or can come to Amsterdam Bijlmer on Sunday June 26 and/or Wednesday July 6, be sure to meet us at Bijlmer Parktheater.

Sunday June 26 – José Montoya
Time: 15.00h-16.30h. Food will be served from 17:00h-17:45h.
Bio: Montoya is an actor and visual artists who, on his website, describes himself as an adopted Colombian and an import-Amsterdammer who always felt different. He played MLK in Urban Myth’s Martin Luther King, won over youngsters in Het Laatste Koekje (The Last Cookie) and starred in various plays by MAAS Podium, Urban Myth, MC and many others.

As a visual artist, he creates colorful paintings with paper that he folds and tears. He uses accessible techniques such as folding, cutting and pasting to work as intuitively as possible. His work, of which you can see an example in this picture, is about light and space. It’s characterized by monochromy, repetition, seriality and the immediacy of the materials he uses.

To buy tickets for the event, please visit this page on the Bijlmer Parktheater website. On every 2nd ticket Bijlmer Parktheater offers a 50% discount. If after the interview with José Montoya you’d like to enjoy the vegan, Caribbean soup and snacks we’re serving that day, be sure to buy the ticket that says “kaartje + catering”.
Please note: The conversations during the #BPTGembertheeSessies with José Montoya will be in Dutch.

Wednesday July 6 – Djuwa Mroivili
20:00h-21:30h. Food will be served from 18:30h-19:15h.
Bio: Mroivili is a classical pianist and teacher who’s one of the co-founders of Hungry, Angry, Late & Tired (HALT), a governing body that works ArtEZ-wide for inclusion. Currently, Mroivili is engaged in researching Black composers, and the role communities can play in designing inclusive art education and art practice.

For her edition of the #BPTGembertheeSessies Mroivili opens the session with a set combining the Comorian melodies/music that they and their father love & work by the Florence Price and Margaret Bonds. Mroivili states: “The common denominators between this music can best be described as ‘Black mentorship’ and ‘comfort music’.” Check the video below for an impression of Mroivili’s awe-mazingness.

To buy tickets for the event, please visit this page on the Bijlmer Parktheater website. On every 2nd ticket Bijlmer Parktheater offers a 50% discount. If you’d like to enjoy the delicious food we’re serving that day, be sure to buy the ticket that says “kaartje + catering”. Since we’re celebrating the Decolonization Day of the Comores, dinner will, of course, include a variation of samosa’s. The entire menu will be announced in the 3rd week of June.
The #BPTGembertheeSessies with Djuwa Mroivili will be in English.

Upcoming events: Billie Holiday, Project Wiaspora & #BPTKids

This year, fast-fast and slow as it has been, is coming to an end. The Blacker Blackness classes will continue until the Winter break but I’m wrapping up my Bijlmer Parktheater activities of this year on Sunday December 5. That morning, from 11.00h-13.00h, our awe-mazing head of PR & marketing Kimberley Piqué, the good Sista’s from the Bijlmer Bookstore and I are co-hosting a kid’s event in the foyer of Bijlmer Parktheater: #BPTKids . More info will follow soon but when I tell you it will be hosted by Jennifer Muntslag and José Montoya, you already know the kids (age 2-7) will love it.

November events
1. Thursday 18, Bijlmer Parktheater: Live recording of two Project Wiaspora-episodes
Event text (as written for Bijlmer Parktheater):
As part of their Project Wiaspora podcast, initiators Simone Zeefuik and Richard Kofi, financially supported by the Stimuleringsfonds, developed a new series: Wiasporan Proverbs. These proverbs consist of six truths, four of which are recorded live in the main room of the house where Zeefuik and Kofi both work as programmers: Bijlmer Parktheater. Each episode is a mix of conversations and performances. The two Wiasporan Truths they’ll record with their guests on Thursday, November 18, are “What’s the scenario?” and “What’s the future tense of being Afro-European?”. “What’s the scenario?” is about how we’d like to see the representation of NL-based, Afrodiasporic communities in films and plays. In the episode “Past, present… What’s the future tense of being Afro-European” Kofi, Zeefuik they will visualize the future of Afrodiasporic communities in Europe. For this Wiasporan Truth, they’ll focus on national institutes and independent initiatives.
Featuring: Ira Kip, Lyse Ishimwe and Adéọlá Adérè̩mí.
Time: 20:00h-22:00h
Click here to purchase your ticket(s).

2. Saturday 20: Panel about Billie Holiday & the film The United States vs. Billie Holiday
“Me, personally… my opening scene would start with a closeup of her right hand. We see it holding a dangling cigarette, its top marked vaguely by red lipstick, and a piece of paper. We can’t read the handwriting but we can make out that the text comes with notes and marks. It’s quiet. Quiet as the camera slowly zooms out and she lays the paper down on something. Perhaps a table, probably a chair.” On my Instagram, I posted part of my reimaginations of this film that I have major issues with: The United States vs. Billie Holiday. The movie centers around the song Strange Fruit and how performing it, resulted in an institutionally racist standoff between Billie Holiday and the U.S.A. What I truly, and when I tell you deeply, am looking forward to, is talking about Billie Holiday with three of my favourite folks: Ira Kip, Aïda Sium and Tracian Meikle. We’ll do so on Saturday November 20 at Rotterdam’s LantarenVenster cinema. We’ll talk about our love for Billie Holiday, the choices we would have made, the urgency of unlearning certain gazes and Hollywood’s unfaced challenges of properly portraying this Icon. Our conversation will be in English.

Location: LantarenVenster (address: Otto Reuchlinweg 996, 3072 MD Rotterdam).
Time: 14.00h-17.30h.
Click here to purchase your ticket(s).
Please note: Your ticket is for the film screening and the panel. If you have a Cineville card, please choose the “Reserveren”-option. There, you can select your free ticket.
This event is a co-production of HipHopHuis, Bijlmer Parktheater, Recognition and LantarenVenster.