Who is Woest in short


Woest is the combined choreographic and performative powers of Manon Avermaete and Paulien Truijen. Woest have in recent years built a respectable fan base within the world of street and location theater. Woest brings dance theater with a touch of absurdity in into public space, which gives its audience a fresh and new experience of their own environment.


The hard pavement tiles, the unpredictability of the weather and the audience does not prevent them doing exactly what they would do in the dance studio. Spicy choreographies filled with floor and partner work, as well as physical risk enthrall the viewer. The outside world is seen as one large stage, and an unending source of inspiration.


Who is Woest a bit longer


Woest began in its original incarnation in 2008  as Tragic Trio - including Marinke Eijgenraam, however from the beginning of 2011, the company and the name was shortened to the title Tragic and this culminated in the renaming of the company in 2012 to Woest.  


Woest's first street theater performance Simpelweg won a prize in 2008 in the street theatre festival Buitenkans. Simpelweg has been performed as recently as the summer of 2011 in festivals as Oerol, Karavaan, Achterhoek Spektakel Tour, Zeeland Nazomer, De Gevleugelde Stad and M-idzomer.


In addition to street theatre Woest invests time in the research of their unique movement language.  They finished their movement research in what they call 'Explosive Bodies' in the spring of 2010. In the summer of the same year the company had the privilege of a residency at the Oerol Festival. There they created the location performance Suitable Case, in which the public  follows the performance that moves through the woods. In 2011 Woest resumes Suitable Case, developing and performing it in complete new locations, such as the Museum M in Leuven.


After an initial research workshop in 2010, they followed this up in 2011 with a new location performance When Animals Dream Of Sheep under the direction of New Zealand theatre practitioner Stephen Bain. The performance played during the Oerol Festival 2011 in the woods of the Dutch island Terschelling and also at Chalon dans la rue in a park in Chalon Sur Saône, France.


In the spring of 2011 their latest street theatre performance NetNietNiets premiered in the Belgian festival De Gevleugelde Stad. The performance was well received during the years and subsequently performed in several larger festivals such as De Gevleugelde Stad, FiraTarrega, La Strada Bremen, Deventer Op Stelten, Karavaan, Fest’Arts, Mintfest, Spoffin, Sibiu Fest, Le Jardin des Délices and many more.


Together with dancer Sarah Vingerhoets, Manon and Paulien have made their first theater production for children; Kijk ver genoeg achterom en je kijkt weer naar voor. This production was supported by fABULEUS in coproduction with Krokusfestival Hasselt. The premiere took place in September 2012, the dernière in May 2014. Around Kijk ver genoeg achterom en je kijkt weer naar voor Sarah and Paulien gave many workshops to countless children in Belgium, the Netherlands and Switzerland. Highlights of these years were participating in the Spinrag festival in Kortrijk, Krokus Festival in Hasselt, Tweetakt festival in Utrecht, the Schäxpir festival in Linz, the Kopergietery in Ghent, the dernière Tanzhaus in Zürich and a standing ovation in De Studio in Antwerp!

2013 was devoted by the research and try-outs for the newest site-specific performance Leaving Normal at several festivals each with their own character and form. In 2014 Leaving Normal will be officially launced at festivals like Reuring festival, Deventer op Stelten, Limburg Festival and Spoffin. It's an adventure trail made with a residency at Dansmakers Amsterdam, many festivals and our first subsidy from the Amsterdam Fund for the Arts.


Who is Woest detailed


Manon Avermaete (BE) worked for different dance and theater compagnies such as Troubleyn/Jan Fabre in Antwerp, Vloeistof in Tilburg, Bollwerk in Amsterdam, Het Paleis/Dimitri Leue in Antwerp and vzw POK in Antwerp, after her graduation at the Theaterschool in Amsterdam.


She has been working on her own projects since several years. The first piece that she has made and which was presented outside of the school in the Vondelpark Open Air theatre in 2006 was "What the water feels like to the fishes". This piece was a success and selected for the Uitmarkt 2006 in her last year of dance theatre studies. After that she made "The tragic spectacle of people working out" in Amsterdam and "Mais les carrots!" in Thessaloniki (Greece) for the company "Vis Motrix".


She has also been working on dance film. After Prosic her first dance film in 2005 she made Sunshower in the summer 2006 together with Paulien Truijen. In 2009 they and Marinke Eijgenraam have made another dance film in the port of Antwerp “City Ping”. In 2010 she was accepted to APT (Advanced Performing Theatre), a Postgraduate study at Desingel in Antwerp. There she developed, in cooperation with Woest/Tragic a first movement research Explosive body. Their first steps in a further development of movement researches are made.


Manon is the artistic director and created and/or performed in the projects Leaving Normal, Kijk ver genoeg achterom en je kijkt weer naar voor, NetNietNiets, When animals dream of sheep, Suitable Case, Simpelweg, Explosive Bodies and her older works Sunshower, The Tragic spectacle of people working out and What the water feels like to the fishes.


Paulien Truijen (NL) joined differerent projects during her intership-year at the Theaterschool in Amsterdam. Her own solo Meet me at Tuesday in collaboration with Maja Delak in Slovenia and joined the production Boxing Pushkin with Andrea Boll/Bollwerk are two of those.


Since her graduation, she performed in choreographies from Liat T. Waysbort / Dansateliers, Stijn Celis / Flemish Opera, Danstheater Aya, Groundbreakers, Bollwerk, Suzy Blok and others. The projects alternate from film, opera, location, street and theater productions. Beside performing she teaches educational dance-theatre workshops and classes for children and youngsters. The past years she is touring the world with Erik Kaiel / Arch8 performances as Tetris (IPAY Victor Award), Murikamification, No Man Is An Island and Connect The Dots.


Paulien is the practical, financial director of Woest but is dancing as well in the projects Lucky Shots, Balancing Bodies, Leaving Normal, Kijk ver genoeg achterom en je kijkt weer naar voor, NetNietNiets, When animals dream of sheep, Suitable Case, Simpelweg, Explosive Bodies and the older projects of Manon; Sunshower, The tragic spectacle of people working out and What the water fiels like to the fishes


Steven Holsbeeks (BE) has been working for a few years as the musician and composer of Woest. He created the music in the previous street and location performances as well for the new theater creation for children Kijk ver genoeg achterom en je kijkt weer naar voor. For Leaving Normal he made again the soundscape. As keyboard accompianist and guitarist he created the soundtrack for Algiers Sections of a Happy Moment from the video artist David Claerbout.Steven is guitarist at Few Bits, Deadsets and tours with The Go Find (keyboard and guitar).


Besides his musical activities he works for the creative studio Indianen in Antwerp. In this studio they develop interactive projects with both new technologies and traditional materials. The Indianen created for Leaving Normal the individual music boxes. He is the designer of all the publicity as well as the website of Woest.


Toon van Gramberen and Hanna Mampuys (BE) work for the first time with Woest. In Leaving Normal they are inseparable.

Hanna and Toon followed many workshops, trainings and internships and have developed themselves into versatile acrobats. They perform throughout Europe with their own circus company
Deux Sans Trois.



Wannes de Porre (BE) earned his bachelor's degree in 2011 in Modern Theatre Dance at the Amsterdam School of the Arts. After his studies he performed in work of Conny Janssen Dances, Gotra Ballet / Joost Vrouenraets, The Dutch Opera, Vloeistof, Nanine Linning, Jasper Van Luijk, Jonathan Bellinx, Alexandra Meijer, Loic Perela, Andreas Denk and others. Leaving Normal is his first production with Woest.