For starters, tell us a bit about yourself.
“I’m a theater maker and sometimes I also play in shows. At the moment I’m creating a performance that gives the audience a look into what goes on in someone’s head when they have a mental illness. Dancers play out weird thoughts or things that go wrong in there. Ish Collective asked me to create a performance with them. They saw my previous shows and said it was cool and edgy. I often use heavy themes in my work.”
What inspires you to create a performance?
“Personally, I find the mind fascinating. You never know what goes on in there when you’re talking to someone. What do they really feel? I want to give a realistic view on what it’s like to have a mental illness and to break the taboo. I’ve worked together with neuropsychologists before and also want to work with psychiatrists and patients in the future. To make it as real as possible.”
What will you do during Secret Rooms?
“Abdelhadi Baaddi asked me to create a performance out of his own true story. He’s a very talented actor, beatboxer and dancer. A while ago he took a trip with his dad. Together they drove all the way to Morocco in an old Mercedes van. During their trip they discovered that they often didn’t understand each other because of the big difference in their lives. His dad threw his dreams out the window for a safe and secure life. And Abdel did exactly the opposite and followed his dream. As a viewer, you’re a passenger on this emotional road trip. But not to worry, there’ll be plenty of room to laugh.”
How does an unusual location, like a hotel room or elevator, contribute to your performance?
“As a viewer, you don’t just sit back and enjoy the show. Because you’re a part of it. You really feel like you’re in it. During Secret Rooms the hotel room where we perform will act like a hotel room which Abdel and his dad booked for a night on one of their stops on the way to Morocco. Normally we actually invite the audience inside the van to take a trip with us. Literally. We go for a drive with 8 people. It’s an intimate experience.”
Can you tell us a little secret of your own?
“This might be a bit weird. But sometimes I have a temporary fear for society and just want to relax in my own little safe world. So I order some food at home. But when the delivery guy is at my door, I’m too scared to open the door. I just think “Ahhh, go away!”. Fortunately my boyfriend will deal with this “outsider” and opens the door for me.”
// Secret Rooms – Location theatre festival for curious minds
Sunday 26 February 2017 // 13:00-22:00
Tickets between €7,50 and €12,50 per show
Available online // www.volkshotel.nl/secretrooms
// Ik ga op reis en ik neem mee… by Lara Wakelkamp & Abdelhadi Baaddi
Find out more about Lara’s Secret Rooms performance.