This Thursday, the church comes to you with a unique dance service.
Dancing, drinking or working out together has become a rarity these days. This is not good for people, thought student and radio maker Sven Alkemade. He talks to quite some students for his weekly Campus Radio broadcasts, many of whom report things are ‘quite crappy’ since the curfew was put in place. He started thinking about whether it would be possible to organise something to support all of those students who spend their evenings indoors. A brainstorm session with the municipality, Popupop, MiniCulture and RTV Rijnstreek resulted in an online event to be held in the Grote Kerk this Thursday, 25 February.
From 20.00 to 24.00, you and your housemates (or, lacking these, your house plants) can enjoy four sets of ‘spring grooves and lockdown bangers’ by different MiniCulture DJ’s. Campus Radio gets the party started earlier, at 17.00 hrs, with anticipatory fun and interviews. Sven: ‘in addition to the live stream, there is an online Zoom meeting for interaction. You can watch other houses dance. We really hope this will regenerate a feeling of a joint party, which is so sorely missed now.’
The church is in use for worship by the Protestant Parish every Sunday, but the rest of the week, the church is available for the Wageningen communityLocation manager of the Grote Kerk Frits Huijbers
A church may not be the first location to spring to mind for a cool dance event. Still, the Grote Kerk has been organising events for a while now. ‘The church was taken over by the Gelderse Oude Kerken (old churches of Gelderland) foundation in 2017’, says location manager Frits Huijbers. ‘The Church is in use for worship by the Protestant Parish every Sunday, but the rest of the week, it is available for the Wageningen community. This means we aim to organise all sorts of things, such as weddings, gala evenings, pop concerts. We have all kinds of activities planned for the fall when visitors will hopefully be allowed again.
Moreover, we are discussing the option of having exams take place in the church with the university. When we heard about this dance event, we were eager to join; students are an important section of the Wageningen population, who are currently missing out on a lot.’
Does this not collide with the church-goers, who may not be fans of dance music? Huijbers: ‘Not at all. Basically, everything is possible, naturally with respect for the church’s history and the building itself, which must remain intact. If you were to play loud Hardrock music, the tiles are likely to fly off the roof. You must take the acoustics of the building into account, which calls for subdued music.’
This Thursday is not expected to be very wild. Due to the corona measures, only the organisers and DJ’s are permitted to be present, and the church will not be jam-packed with speakers. ‘The volume will probably be louder in people’s homes than in the church’, says Huijbers.
There is only one way to find out: be there!