Discover NDT

Our story

The purpose of Nederlands Dans Theater (NDT) is to offer unique experiences and perspectives in dance that engage conversation and promote diversity. NDT is a leading contemporary dance company dedicated to creation, research, and talent development. In its commitment to innovation throughout all aspects of the company, NDT collaborates with international choreographers and artists and connects with audiences and communities in The Hague, the Netherlands, and all over the world.

At the heart of NDT is a commitment to collaboration, curiosity, innovation and community. Like all art, dance creates, provokes and inspires an open space for dialogue towards an inclusive society. We believe every human being deserves to experience the pleasure of art and that today, more than ever, we need channels of expression to help us examine the world.

Read more on NDT’s mission and vision

'The Big Crying' (2021) by Marco Goecke. Photo: Rahi Rezvani.
'Baby don't hurt me' (2021) by Imre van Opstal & Marne van Opstal. Photo: Rahi Rezvani.

about ndt

NDT is one of the world’s leading contemporary dance companies. The group is based in The Hague, but performs for an international audience of 150,000 visitors in Europe, America, Asia and Australia. Since its founding in 1959 by Benjamin Harkarvy, Aart Verstegen and Carel Birnie in collaboration with eighteen dancers from the Dutch National Ballet (then known as Nederlands Ballet), NDT has paved its own way in the modern dance field. Choreographers such as Glen Tetley and Hans van Manen have prominently left an avant-garde mark on the artistic face of the company. Their non-conformist, progressive productions put NDT on the national and international map.

Since then, the company has built a rich repertoire, consisting of more than 620 ballets by master choreographers Jiří Kylián and Hans van Manen, Sol León & Paul Lightfoot, Crystal Pite and Marco Goecke, Johan Inger, Medhi Walerski, Ohad Naharin, Alexander Ekman, Gabriela Carrizo, Franck Chartier, Hofesh Shechter, Edward Clug and Sharon Eyal & Gai Behar and many others.

Read more on the choreographers

Two companies

The first company, NDT 1, consists of 28 phenomenal dancers from all over the world, aged 23 to 40 years old. The dancers are world famous for their theatricality, stunning technique and unparalleled expression. Each season, the first company performs four Dutch programs in addition to numerous large tours through either Asia, the United States, South America or Australia.

In 1978 the company founded NDT 2 under the inspiring leadership of Jiří Kylián. In a three year trajectory, this second company prepares sixteen recently graduated, often classically trained dancers, for the world top. Initially, NDT 2 was considered a talent development program from which the greatest talents could progress to NDT 1. Over the years, and under the former leadership of Arlette van Boven, Gerald Tibbs and Fernando Hernando Magadan, NDT 2 has developed into an independent company with its own repertoire and extensive national and international touring schedule. The collaboration with many (upcoming) choreographers gives dancers the opportunity to quickly assimilate to different dance languages, techniques and working methods.

From their home base in The Hague, both companies work continuously to make a significant contribution to the future of contemporary dance, both in the Netherlands and far beyond. Dance talent, choreographic innovation, experimentation and a high degree of productivity – the company creates an average of 10 new works per season – define NDT since its early beginnings.

Discover all the dancers

Talent development and education

As a professional dance company with a rich history and an enormous dedication to a meaningful contribution to the art of dance, it is also very important for NDT to pay attention to the support and cultivation of dance talent.

The Talent Development & Education department organizes a wide range of activities every season in which various target groups get to know NDT in different ways. The Education activities mainly focus on children in primary school. Projects such as Danser in de klas and the recently designed dance apps are good examples of this. However, the talent development projects are aimed at developing dance talent at both amateur and professional levels. Examples include the Young Talent Project (YTP) and the NDT Summer Intensive.

Educational and talent activities

Diversity & Inclusion

At NDT, we promote diversity and inclusion in our physical and online workplace. In line with the mission and vision, NDT formulated action plans to promote diversity and inclusion, with regard to the HR policy in the organization and staff training, within the programs for talent development & education, for the artistic programming and the audition process, and for internal and external communication. All actions aim to make the organization in all its facets more diverse and inclusive, and thus more relevant to new audiences. The entire organization is closely involved in the development and implementation of the plans. That involvement is great!

Among other things, NDT strives for an inclusive and accessible use of language for all. Language is constantly changing and so should we! Therefore, we are constantly in the process of making the necessary alterations to our website, email listings, newsletters and all other forms of (digital) communication with our audience and dance community. Please bear with us as we implement these changes. In case you encounter a form of NDT communication that lacks these values and are in need of alteration, please contact us at info@ndt.nl and we will respond as fast as possible. Thank you for your understanding and patience!

'From England with Love' (2021) by Hofesh Shechter. Photo: Rahi Rezvani.

NDT must be a safe workplace for everyone. To ensure this, we formulated these Golden Rules that apply to everyone in the organization. We feel it is crucial that the Golden Rules are communicated clearly both internally and externally so that these rules don’t remain words on paper, but are collectively carried out in practice.

Read NDT’s Golden Rules here.

NDT 60 years: a selection from the archive

NDT is very pleased to be able to look back on its rich existence with you, our audience. For the past two years, we have been working on preserving and digitizing the image archive. In the fall of 2019, this material was festively presented on the occasion of NDT’s sixtieth anniversary. Large parts of the archive can be found on  Google Arts & Culture, which is free to the public.