renee van zadelhoff

TANZMANSCHINE is a 45-minute performance installation. The installation is a 5x5m cage divided into 9 squares of light. Around the squares, there is scaffolding tube. In the square, Niek is finding his way through this system of lights and sounds. 

Next to the performing space, there is an extensive technical setup. There is no one behind this setup. The installation runs itself. 

The soundscape is dark, shamanic, uncompromising hard techno. The system pressures the performer into a merciless inescapable journey. The movement of the performer is based on the light dramaturgy and vice versa. The audience can experience it from close by or a distance they prefer. 


Concept – Direction – Performer Niek Vanoosterweyck
Sound Design IGNOTA
Light Design Hessel Hilgersom
Sound Engineer – Technical Production Titus Duitshof
Production – Dramaturgy Saskia Wieser
Advisor Bas van Rijnsoever
Thanks to Loes van der Pligt, Willem Weemhoff, Erik Lint, Fred Rodrigues
Produced by ID-Lab and the Mime Education

Supported by

How can I be seen in this disappearing world?

I decide to follow the light and let myself be navigated by it. So I stay visible. So I can be, there. Seen. In the spotlight. In the right place, in the right timing. I get immersed by the commands of the machine. Trying to be ahead. To stay visible within the installation. The machine leads me to my outermost border of exhaustion, of being. The struggle becomes more and more visible.
How can I make the invisible visible to you? How can I break with the light without losing my flow? Through listening and moving, through acting and reacting. This way I can choose between going against and working with the invisible power. I embody the invisible to make it visible.

In Tanzmanschine we use an infrared camera, which is hanging above the performance space. This camera projects invisible light on the performer and is connected to Isadora (a communication software). In Isadora, we use the incoming light data to influence the light- and soundscapes. Because of this connection, I can influence my surroundings. Therefore I need to discover the impact of the movements on the invisible machine. I follow the light to stay visible. Until the system limits my movement space and forces me into exhaustion. By falling on the ground I become invisible to the camera. I reground myself to go against the light and control the sound.
The questions we are raising: How do we relate to something we can not see? What are the invisible translations of our actions? How do we deal with something that seems it will never stop?


Niek on performing Tanzmanschine

When I start, I need focus and an empty head. All of my attention goes to the sound, the body and the light. While performing it I noticed that if I memorised all of the lights my brain would be too busy to react. To be able to react as fast as the machine demands I am obliged to follow my intuition, my senses and reflexes.  The machine doesn’t stop, so the only option is to give yourself to it completely. I have quite the winning mentality so making mistakes pushes me to be even more precise. And if I don’t listen well enough the mistakes are inevitable. It puts me in this special state which keeps me going.