Call for participants

Deadline to apply: 28 November 2021
Send your application to:

Launching in early 2022, Open Rehearsal is a new initiative of If I Can’t Dance, I Don’t Want To Be Part Of Your Revolution established to support the development of performance and performative practices in the Netherlands. For its first edition, the Open Rehearsal is conceived and coordinated by guest curators Mohamad Dib and Mini Maxwell.

About If I Can’t Dance, I Don’t Want To Be Part Of Your Revolution

Established in 2005, If I Can’t Dance, I Don’t Want To Be Part Of Your Revolution is an art organization dedicated to exploring the evolution and typology of performance and performativity in contemporary art. We do this through the development, production, and presentation of commissioned projects with artists, curators, and researchers on the basis of long-term collaboration and support. As an itinerant art organisation, on a day-to-day basis we operate out of a production office in Amsterdam, using the flexibility it provides us to move and adapt as each production requires. We present our projects through an ever-evolving network of partner institutions in the Netherlands and abroad, creating the conditions for each project to have a meaningful trajectory of presentations, and for diverse audiences to have access to these. In this spirit, we recently opened the doors of our If I Can’t Dance Studio, which, like the other aspects of our programme, is not defined by a given location. The Studio moves with its activities, shifting between physical environments, printed matter, and the web. Wherever it finds itself, the Studio makes room for experiments, attempts, and collaborations. Its digital public life – .studio – is built upon the same parameters and, as such, is always under construction.

Structure and purpose of the Open Rehearsal Program

The Open Rehearsal initiative takes the familiar form of the ‘open rehearsal’ as a starting point to facilitate and of presenting works-in-progress, equally online and on-site. The initiative aims to support the diverse communities of artists and performers based in the Netherlands by creating much-needed space for intimate dialogue on in-process ideas and activities. The rehearsals, unfolding both on-site (1 evening) and online (6 months), will be opened to small audiences that are invited to give their feedback, including general audience, as well as community peers and specialized practitioners selected by the participants in conversation with Maxwell and Dib. The Open Rehearsal welcomes artists from various performance practices such as (but not limited to): architecture, scenography, dance, music, theatre, visual arts. We encourage artists searching for a rehearsal structure to apply, regardless of their level of experience, age, and educational trajectory.

The first iteration of the Open Rehearsal will focus on embodied temporalities in performance. It will consist of three consecutive cycles each spanning six months (cycle 1: January-June 2022; cycle 2: July-December 2022; cycle 3: January-June 2023). Application deadlines for cycles 2 and 3 will be announced in due time. Each cycle will host three applicants (individual artists or collectives) with each applicant selected to explore one of the following motifs:

A: Moments of glance

An ordinary glance, like the one aimed at strangers in the street, the metro, the park, or at one’s own reflection on a black mirror, sometimes loses its ordinary character and begins to estrange. Like a forceful wave, a glance could strike, unsettling in its passage one’s most intimate sense of the self and the world.

This motif targets practices that actively think and work with the affective power of the glance. Aspects that could be associated with the glance are for instance the circulation of the gaze between performer and viewer, how visuality influences subjectivity, and the relation between oneself and otherness.

B: Moments of a leap

There are eruptive events in which a leap takes place. There is a place from which the leap emerges, a destination that the leap aims at reaching, and the space and time of the leap itself. Think about the spark of a revolution, technological discoveries that we are yet to grasp, or the moment you finally quit a job you despise.

The second motif explores strategies and methodologies of transitioning in performance. Keeping an open and interdisciplinary lens on this term, the aspect of transition can be approached for instance as rhythmical, narrational, spatial, or as a psychological device..

C: Moments of stepping out

When we step out from a place and enter another, we do not only behave differently but change focus. Think about leaving the private setting of your home to the street, a dance floor to the boring world, or going to a bar after a work shift. The borders that demarcate these places structure our lives, and the movement from one to another has its own felt rhythm.

With this motif, we are interested in proposals that look at performance in the expanded field of daily life, lingering with the porous and shifting boundaries that exist between different stages, on- and off-stage, roles in a performance, or – most broadly – performance and life.

PLEASE NOTE: There will be only one applicant selected per motif within each cycle.

During the six-month cycle, participants will receive curatorial and artistic support from Dib and Maxwell for presenting their work-in-progress in a physical space in Amsterdam and in a series of online interventions on The Open Rehearsal treats both the physical space and the online space of .studio as two equally operative rehearsal sites and incites a dynamic relationship between the two. With this in mind, we strongly encourage applicants to imagine and explore the performative potential of .studio away from its use as a mere repository for documentation.


If I Can’t Dance provides selected participants with a fee – and production budget of 2600€ and guidance and support from our guest curators Mini Maxwell (for the on-site presentation) and Mohamad Dib (for the online presentations and uploads). We furthermore provide a project-specific feedback structure to accompany the on-site and online presentations, as well as basic audiovisual equipment and web design support.

Eligibility criteria

For your application to be considered in the open call, it must meet the following criteria:

  • · You must be based in the Netherlands;
  • · Your application must be complete, containing in PDF format: the form filled and all its questions answered, a CV (up to two pages), a portfolio (up to 5 pages).
  • · The application should be sent before the deadline (28th of November, 12:00 AM) to Make sure to mention your selected motif (moments of glance, moments of a leap, moments of stepping out) in the email subject. Applications sent via WeTransfer or Dropbox will not be considered.
  • · The Open Rehearsal is not an artist commission. This should translate into applications that demonstrate the aim of presenting a work-in-progress and not finished works.
  • · During the Open Rehearsal cycle, you cannot be enrolled in any educational program.
  • · Your proposal must respond to specific visions and goals of one of the Open Rehearsal cycles described above;
  • · Your practice does not stand for any discriminatory, intolerant, or patriarchal worldviews.

Upon meeting these criteria, your application will be eligible for consideration by the If I Can’t Dance artistic team consisting of Frédérique Bergholtz, Megan Hoetger, Sara Giannini, Anik Fournier, Mini Maxwell and Mohamad Dib.

About the guest curators

The first iteration of the Open Rehearsal will be developed and coordinated by guest curators Mini Maxwell and Mohamad Dib in conversation with the core curatorial team of If I Can’t Dance.

Mini Maxwell is an independent curator, multidisciplinary artist, and activist who is from, lives, and works in Amsterdam. They are fascinated with human bodies and are drawn to the mediums of photography, performance, film and fashion. Mini has curated, among others, ‘Queer is not a Manifesto’ at Stedelijk Museum/Radio Radio; ‘Womansday’ at De Vrankrijk, and the Radical Queer Resistance Festival. Mini is the founder of Queer Landing and Queer Bodies and is a programmer for International Queer Migrant Film Festival. Together with Aynouk Tan, they are the non-profit organisation called 'Queer is not a Manifesto’.

Mohamad Dib is a freelance cultural worker based in Amsterdam. He is the founder of the dormant office, a platform for research in psychoanalysis and continental thought. His ongoing research project Virtual Enjoyment investigates the structure and logic of enjoyment under techno-capitalism. Mohamad holds an MA in Critical Studies from the Sandberg Instituut and has training in architecture and art history from the American University of Beirut.