Country music has never been so sexy

Those with their fingers on the pulse of university life will already know, but for those of us that don’t (or have recently taken up residence under a rock) Erasmus University is celebrating 100 years since it first opened. Amidst the slew of events commemorating the centennial, I recently had the pleasure of attending the 100 years in 100 minutes cultural event.

As you may derive from the name, the event set out with the intent of depicting 100 years of history in 100 minutes of performances from the Rotterdam Student Orchestra, Risk-Theatre Society, Erasmus Dance Society, ESK Rotterdamsch Schoon, Modern Jazz and the Lyrical Hip Hop groups.

The event was led by a performance from the Risk-Theatre society, a story portraying the founder of Erasmus University uncovering the events of the last 100 years. I especially enjoyed the really special cardboard-y element the actors brought to the performance. It wasn’t enough to just rob the founders of their entrepreneurial spirit when the fairy-godmother revealed all of the secrets of the future, but the actors really went the extra mile by portraying them as one dimensional, emotionally immature children. God I love theatre.

This said, my opinion may have been at least a little skewed by the fact that I can’t speak Dutch so I spent the majority of the performance scrambling for the English script in the pitch black room.

The show proceeded with orchestral music and a Waltz executed by the dance society. However, the act that really caught the attention of many was the Rumba performed by two dancers of Erasmus Dance Society, who are the Dutch Amateur National Latin-Dance Champions. They danced to an old time country tune and I must say, country music has never been so sexy. It seemed that few of the fathers in the audience all of a sudden became acutely aware of the lack of air conditioning in the room.

Aside from the aforementioned theatrical performance, I saw very little in the way of representing the history of the University. I suppose the Waltz speaks to some past era, and the “wonderfully modern”, modern dance performance by the Jazz society, represented the darker LSD fuelled phase of Erasmus of the mid-60s, but it must be said, there was little relation to the history. Don’t get me wrong, I thoroughly enjoyed all of the acts, warts-and-all, but I wouldn’t say it’s especially, “historically accurate”.    

Having said all of this, I can’t help but think that the mix of different groups at the cost of thematic cohesion, seems fitting in the celebration of this event. It is the mixing of the old and new, high culture and popular culture, Classical and Hip Hop that allowed the event and University to continuously evolve whilst staying connected to its strong heritage.

Daniel Boonstra (20) is a self-proclaimed passionate lover and is unanimously agreed to be a 7.5 maybe a mid-8 at a push when he wears “those jeans”. He studies IBCOM at the Erasmus University and enjoys long walks on the beach. Every month, he visits a student event to shed his light on what’s hot on campus.