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VOICE NOISE is inspired by Anne Carson's essay The Gender of Sound (1992), in which she exposes how patriarchal culture has sought to silence women by ideologically associating female sound with monstrosity, disorder and death.

In VOICE NOISE, some innovative, unknown and/or forgotten female voices from the past hundred years of music history are given a stage. With this, Jan Martens takes the next step in his pursuit of shaping an alternative canon.

Six dancers confront recordings in which the human voice can be heard in all kinds of guises: humming, soothing, screeching, whispering, singing. They gradually discover their own voice.

After working with large groups in his recent productions – any attempt will end in crushed bodies and shattered bones and FUTUR PROCHE – Jan Martens returns to a production for a small ensemble of six dancers. He works with some dancers who have inspired him before (Steven Michel, Courtney May Robertson and Loeka Willems) and invites new faces (Sue-Yeon Youn, Elisha Mercelina and Mamadou Wagué).

Jan Martens' obsession with numbers, geometry and patterns meets the unique physical languages of his performers, leading to a newfound interest in dance itself: in detail and subtlety, in redefining grace and elegance.


New work arises from previous creations. That is the case for VOICE NOISE.

In PASSING THE BECHDEL TEST (2018), ELISABETH GETS HER WAY (2021) and FUTUR PROCHE (2022) I have included texts, music and compositions by artists that I do not consider known, loved or recognized enough.

In dance, people often work with newly composed music that has been specially created for the performance, or they work with a grand master who has long since passed away, for example Bach. But so much music has been written that is only performed once or a few times and then disappears from the radar forever. In this new work I want to delve into music history and see if I can highlight different unknown voices. This time I want to take 'voice' very literally. The music of this piece will consist exclusively of works in which the female voice plays an important role.

Although the roots of this performance will have a clear feminist undertone, I think that this time the feminist message will not be on the surface, unlike previous works such as PASSING THE BECHDEL TEST and any attempt will end in crushed bodies and shattered bones. The form of the new VOICE NOISE will mainly be that of an abstract dance work. The layering of all those different female voices should speak for itself.

All dates

Wed 6 Nov
20:00 - 21:40

Wednesday 6 November

20:00 - 21:40
From € 12,50 tot € 28,00
Theater Rotterdam Schouwburg -  Schouwburgplein 25, Centrum
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