This ongoing performance project is constructed around the communication technique of flag semaphore which was widely used in the maritime world in the 19th century. Each letter of the alphabet is represented by the position of two hand-held flags.
Our SIGNS semaphore interventions investigate the modes of contemporary communication by re-shaping an outdated, long distance communication tool. It allows us to reflect physically and mentally upon notions of readability, intimacy and the human desire to give statements.(click on tab below for descriptions)


    In the Archive of Forgotten Signal, we collect all kinds of messages from our visitors. First they have to stamp their message with semaphore stamps. Then they decide whether they want to send their FMS(flag messaging service) through our flagmessaging team, or if they want to do it themselves on our 'F-I-Y' positions. In exchange, one receives a stamped FMS from an earlier visitor. From elevated positions the FMS is then signalled. Even from long distances, the messages can be deciphered with the help of semaphore flyers.

    Visually strong, energetic interventions with flags surprise by-passers in public spaces. The performers appear among the pedestrians, in changing formations and with different dynamics they signal short FMS messages and collectively execute choreographic practices in relation to these signals. The messages articulate short and partially provocative statements on contemporary modes of human behaviour in public spaces. Watch the short film to get an impression of these Guerrilla dance activities.

    Everyone is on What's App, snapchat and twitter...but here you can discover the newest from of communication: Fl@gging. Wel, actually it is not really new, but exists already 400 years. In this energetic and entertainign perfrmance, three dancers teach their audience the do's and don'ts of Flag semaphore. Do you get the word in time?

    How can we use signals to position ourselves? How are we positioned by signals? How does the use of a strict form provide us with freedom? How can our desire to communicate enable us to occupy spaces? Do we need to be understood in order to make ourselves clear?

    “This performance is the perfect proof for the fact that it is not really of such importance WHAT we say. What is of importance is HOW we say it” (audience reaction)




    concept and direction: Jochen Stechmann in collaboration with Birgit Wieger
    performers: Floris Dahlgrün, Matias Daporta Gonzales, Sijas De Groot, Ludmilla Euler, Sarah Kate Gardener, Gonny Gaakeer, Jakob Proyer, Phillippe Rives, Sergio Rueda, Jochen Stechmann, Nadia Tsulukidze, Yvonne Van Den Akker, Luc Van Esch, Rocco Vermijs, Birgit Wieger
    set design archive: Ole Kloss
    costumes: Birgit Wieger
    camera and montage: Jeanette Groenendaal, Zoot Dercks
    Festival Over Het IJ, Amsterdam
    Dansmakers Amsterdam
    Festival Over Het IJ, Amsterdam
    Festival Chalon dans la Rue (F)
    Festival Spoffin, Amersfoort
    Oerol Festival, Terschelling
    Melkweg Theatre, Amsterdam
    Culturele Zondagen, Utrecht
    Altona macht auf, Hamburg (D)
    Dansmakers Amsterdam
    Teatro Off, Valencia (E)
  • This performance showed me genuinely what is more important than WHAT we say: HOW we say it.
    Audience Reaction
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