Watch the pictures

Sum Thoughts

Marina Mascarell A hefty flood
Edward Clug mutual comfort
Hans van Manen Short Cut
Sol León & Paul Lightfoot Subtle Dust

The performances in this programme have taken place in season 2017-2018.

The NDT 2 programme Sum Thoughts offers a rich tapestry of lyrical and experimental work by new and established talent. The young dancers perform Short Cut (1999) by maestro Hans van Manen and Edward Clug’s first creation for the company, mutual comfort (2015). Former NDT dancer Marina Mascarell makes her first creation for the company (A hefty flood), and the evening also offers a world premiere by house choreographers Sol León and Paul Lightfoot (Subtle Dust).

Short Cut is a masterpiece from Hans van Manen’s 120 ballets and counting oeuvre, all with his unmistakable signature. In mutual comfort Edward Clug lets the dancers perform somewhat nervous and short movements, resulting in a detailed and sharply defined choreography. Poetic and imaginative Marina Mascarell is able to translate her social commitment through dance. As a choreographer Mascarell has been working with Korzo productions for the past six years. Since their first creation for NDT 2 in 1989, Sol León and Paul Lightfoot have made over fifty choreographies for NDT. Sum Thoughts presents another world premiere by the renowned choreographic duo (Subtle Dust).

Watch the pictures of Sum Thoughts.

Programme order

A hefty flood – Marina Mascarell
mutual comfort – Edward Clug
Short Cut – Hans van Manen
Subtle Dust – Sol León & Paul Lightfoot

Duration: 2 hours and 15 minutes, including 2 intermissions and 1 short conversion

Performance dates

Season 2017-2018 | March 8 – May 12, 2018
The Hague, Maastricht, Enschede, Tilburg, Utrecht, Eindhoven, Den Bosch, Zwolle, Groningen, Amsterdam, Rotterdam, Amstelveen, Haarlem, Nijmegen, Heerlen

In this performance


“It is probably no mere historical accident that the word person, in its first meaning, is a mask. It is rather a recognition of the fact that everyone is always and everywhere, more or less consciously, playing a role… It is in these roles that we know each other; it is in these roles that we know ourselves. In a sense, and in so far as this mask represents the conception we have formed of ourselves —the role we are striving to live up to —this mask is our truer self, the self we would like to be. In the end, our conception of our role becomes second nature and an integral part of our personality. We come into the world as individuals, achieve character, and become persons.”

– Ervin Goffman, The Presentation of Self in Everyday Life

Photo: Joris-Jan Bos. Choreography: 'A hefty flood' by Marina Mascarell.

“The performers have been sharing their wishes, their dreams, the roles they would like to play or be. Through those personal stories we have created this piece, a world of desires. Like La Agrado says in All about my mother by Pedro Almodóvar: ‘You are more authentic the more you resemble what you have dreamed of being’.” – Marina Mascarell

A hefty flood, by former NDT dancer Marina Mascarell, is dark and impenetrable. (…) It looks experimental, and yet it has been seen so often.

NRC Next
on A hefty flood

Edward Clug’s choreography is detailed and sharply defined. Often at times, its most distinguishing feature tends to be twitchiness where the bodies f lick and jerk so extremely and frequently that it can be interpreted as punctuation; a certain acknowledgment of the beat. As a choreographer, Clug is interested in highlighting the dancer’s individual experience by keeping it fresh in his approach. By doing so, his work leans towards emphasizing a personal experience that arises from the process of creation that is led by illuminating human contradictions, imparting surprising moments of beauty and spontaneous irony.

Photo: Joris-Jan Bos. Choreography: 'mutual comfort' by Edward Clug.

mutual comfort by Edward Clug brings the viewer, again, on the edge of his chair. Thanks to the four dancers, but especially thanks to the cool, clearly lined style in which subtly undulating bodies seem to contemplate for a while before they continue.

NRC Next
on mutual comfort
Photo: Joris-Jan Bos. Choreography: 'Short Cut' by Hans van Manen. Dancers: Donnie Duncan Jr., Fay van Baar.

Jacob ter Veldhuis composes with his ears. I choreograph with my eyes.

“For this choreography, I was actually looking for a long adagio. When I heard this string quartet by Jacob ter Veldhuis in the car by chance, I was extremely surprised. I was struck by the tonality, the poetry in the music and the driving rhythm. Rhythm is in the end, as Balanchine once said, the foundation of dance. This ballet is somehow pulled to the ground. There are barely no lifts. Everything is directed towards the ground. The choreography sticks to it. In my experience that corresponds exactly with what Jacob ter Veldhuis does in his music.” – Hans van Manen

In Short Cut the beauty of the art of dance is revealed. The movements are pure, sensual, intense and do not need any frills. Looking at Short Cut is nothing more than enjoying pure dance.

Leidsch Dagblad
on Short Cut

We shall not cease from exploration. And the end of all our exploring will be to arrive where we started and know the place for the first time. – T.S.Elliot

“2001 was the last time we worked with the infinitesimal music of J.S.Bach. His influence for a period of our oeuvre was impactful, therefore it was a clear and conscious decision on our part to revisit him now in our journey. Nearly all of the pieces of Bach we have collected for this ballet are transcriptions or interpretations of his magnificent music. His source remaining intact, and yet altered, transformed. Transformation plays a crucial role in all our lives on many levels, be it physical, emotional or spiritual. Our work remains abstract, yet what purer way to compare our choreographic duality to the concept of both manual instinct and intellectual thought transmuting to produce a third element made of both in part. A Symbiosis. We wanted that this work should be firmly about quality with these young and talented artists. To hopefully enable them to grow and change by returning to the roots, swimming with the cycles, reconnecting with nature where we will all encounter the source which is patiently waiting.” – Sol León & Paul Lightfoot

Photo: Rahi Rezvani. Choreography: 'Subtle Dust' by Sol León & Paul Lightfoot.

It is all extremely skilled, virtuoso and aesthetic.

de Volkskrant
on Subtle Dust

The dancers on 'Sum Thoughts'

Photo: Rahi Rezvani. Dancer: Surimu Fukushi.
Photo: Rahi Rezvani. Dancer: Tess Voelker.

“I would say that this piece is very cool in a lot of ways. It can be very satisfying but challenging to dance Edward Clug’s choreographic vocabulary.

His work is clear, light and smooth and needs a lot of attention to become like a sharp knife cutting through butter. It feels like a mature game between two men and two women that creates a tension and sensuality while also being very playful. Milko Lazar’s uneven rhythm of music helps to build and keep the tension throughout the piece. I also love
Edward’s sense of humor sprinkled throughout the piece; at times you are not sure if it’s meant to be funny or not, because the dancers play it cool.”



“There’s a very specific respect a dancer must approach Hans van Manen’s work with. In rehearsals, Nancy (Euverink) often refers to his work as ‘poetry’ which I think appropriately defines this specific approach.

Much like in his choreography, poetry holds rich descriptions to emphasize subtle subtext. There’s so much more involved in a piece of literature than the words themselves; in Short Cut, the beautiful legs and lifts are just the words. It’s the weight and emotion driving this work that give those words description, and the dancer’s relationships give it meaning. In the end, the poem is written and I love how as dancers we must learn to not just read it, but be a part of it.”

Photo: Rahi Rezvani. Dancer: Boston Gallacher.
Photo: Rahi Rezvani. Dancer: Amanda Mortimore.

“The creation began with a mysterious email from Marina Mascarell with a variety of odd questions. First of many was: which animal/imaginable persona would be your alter ego?

I remember finding it so interesting watching all of us approach the questionnaire in such different ways. Some would spend hours discussing how to perfectly describe themselves and others instinctively knew. I was a tree. Later in the process, we would find our ideas, feelings and dreams creeping into the piece. It’s very personal and I’m sure Marina knows a lot of our secrets.

For me, this piece explores connection; to each other, to ourselves, to the floor. During the creation we spent a lot of time underneath the vinyl floors, and it’s quite isolated as they block light and most sound. There are times I have felt lost in the strange landscape of wrinkles and monsters. However, the floors create tension with the people on the other side, and it’s interesting to play with that sensation of being close and not physically touching. You really have to put your trust in the darkness and let it destroy what it will.”


“Since joining NDT 2 last season, I have enjoyed learning and working on repertoire from Sol León and Paul Lightfoot. It has been four years since they last created on NDT 2 with Some other Time.

Although we perform their work consistently, it has been an enlightening experience for myself and my colleagues to be able to work with them intimately during this new creation process. They have chosen to create to Johann Sebastian Bach and have expressed to us how important it is to stay true to the integrity of the music. There is a delicate balance between following the melody or strategically pulling away from it. Not one detail is unaccounted for and every movement should be executed with the highest quality. Each one of us carry the responsibility for becoming a specific character unique to us as individuals in the piece. My part is involved in two duets and it is a rewarding challenge to go through a distinct journey from beginning to end. Beyond choreographing this piece in particular, Paul and Sol are giving us valuable information that we can take with us throughout the rest of our careers.”

Programme booklet & Music

Programme booklet (NDT 2 | Sum Thoughts)