We just finished our three-city tour of the Netherlands – Tilburg, Enschede, and Rotterdam – where we premiered The Garden of Iniquitous Creatures by Ned McGowan and reprised Murder Ballades, both commissions by De Doelen in Rotterdam.
Can we talk about what a great city Rotterdam is? Jaw-dropping (if a bit weird) architecture, great museums and shopping and food, and an adventurous audience. A woman we spoke to said breathlessly that people are calling Rotterdam the new Berlin. High praise, indeed. The weather leaves something to be desired; although it doesn’t get quite as cold as Chicago does, it’s rainy, windy, and grey. But you win some, you lose some.
We used Rotterdam as our home base and did run-outs to Tilburg, a very picturesque small Dutch town with a gorgeous hall decked out in neon lights, and Enschede, a name we have yet to pronounce correctly. Our last concert was at De Doelen in Rotterdam, which meant that we had the whole morning and early afternoon to explore the city. Of course, that was the day the wind and rain decided to thwart even the most determined tourist (me). Walking into the wind resulted in going backwards, so after about an hour and a half of battling the elements, I gave up and cowered in my hotel room until call time. But I did get a chance to explore the Markthal, which is even more fantastic and awe-inspiring in person than I thought it would be. I ate myself silly and bought more goodies to stash in my carryon bag for the flight home.
Next time, I’ve got the Kunsthal and Boijmans and Kijk Kubus in my crosshairs. And I’ll be wearing a poncho.