Student testimonials

  • Coco Broeken, bachelor Design

    Coco Broeken

    Ambience photo Fontys

    Graduate (2012) Bachelor Design

    “I have chosen the degree programme Design at the Academy for Art, Communication and Design (ArtCoDe), because it allows me to gain more in-depth knowledge of various forms of art, such as Photography, Concept and Graphic Design. There is room for going more deeply into one specific subject without neglecting other subjects. The multidisciplinary aspect of Fontys School of Fine and Performing Arts also appealed to me. You can learn so much more from art disciplines that you don’t know anything about."

    "The coaching by the department has been very important to me. Teachers who know their students well can get the most out of them and don’t settle for less. I continuously developed because my teachers followed me critically. Without the right coaching I would not have learned so much. I always had the feeling that I was important as an individual. They looked at my personal qualities and how I could best use them. They don’t treat you as a ‘number’.

    In the future I would like to develop my skills in Photography & Concept. I am ready for the professional field, and to show who I am. I have a clear personal vision, which is reflected in my work. I also find it important to go along with current social themes. Within the framework of the theme ‘Social inclusion and exclusion’ I am doing photographic research among different strata of the population. I want to keep challenging myself by doing research in the Netherlands, but also abroad. After all, we live in a time when it is possible to see how green the grass is at the neighbour’s, and we should learn from that. Part of this is to find out how I can deploy small stories in a worldwide context.”

  • Eva Schubach & Yolaine Dooms, bachelor Circus and Performance Art

    Eva Schubach & Yolaine Dooms

    Ambience photo Fontys

    Graduates (2012) Bachelor circus and Performance Art

    “We both started in a youth circus where circus became a big part of our live. We couldn’t imagine to stop circus any more to study something else. So we realized that we wanted to become professional circus artists."
    "Eva: I heard on a youth circus meeting a speech of the artistic adviser Samuel Jornot. I felt, that he believes in the people and that in ACaPA (Academy for Circus and Performance Art) you won’t be one number in a row of pupils, but that they are really interested in your personal development.

    Yolaine: I heard about the school, through my youth circus. I had already done internships in the circus school in Brussels and was planning to do auditions there. ACaPA was actually my “back-up” plan, as I didn’t know the school, but when I did auditions in ACaPA, I felt directly at home. The school felt so fresh and interesting. I never did auditions in Brussels, as I knew ACaPA was the school where I would learn the most.

    We think it’s important to feel good in the school you choose, as you spend several years there with the aim to get the best out of the school and yourself. As it was a new school, we liked the idea of being part of the development of it. Of course as it was a new school when we started, not everything was set yet and therefore it was not always easy. But in the same time we saw that the school was getting better and better. We felt that they listened to the students and that they tried everything to make it good.

    Now we see that the school is getting really good - as much in technique as in supporting the students in their artistic choices. Already now, the school gets a good reputation in the circus world and several students won prizes at internationally known circus festivals (as Cirque de Demain and Young Stage). Ourselves we got in May 2012 the Bronze Star at the Young Stage festival in Basel, Switzerland.

    As nowbody graduated yet when we started, there was not a known image from the school and we got nicely surprised that it developed so fast to a good education. Problems that we had in the beginning are solved now and the level of the people that enter the school gets better every year."
  • Katja Heitmann, bachelor Dance

    Katja Heitmann

    Katja Heitmann foto Amat Bolsius

    Graduate (2012) Bachelor Dance (Choreography)

    “I grew up in my parents’ dance school in Germany. At an early age I became immensely fascinated
    by tap dancing, which I practised at a very high level. After completing my pre-university education (gymnasium), I wanted to study Dance. I chose the Dance Academy in Tilburg because of its open vision. After doing two years of Dance Theatre, I decided to specialise in Choreography. This was for me an important step in my development. I really found my niche in this study. It offers me the opportunity to create my own work, and to develop my own style and special characteristics as a maker."
    "It is a very hard study - I was often at school until 21.30 h. I really had to get used to that at first, both physically and mentally. But it also gives a lot of satisfaction. It’s an attitude to life that comes to me automatically as an artist, because I am always busy with my projects or pieces, either in the studio or in my head. This attitude is necessary if you want to survive in the professional field. 

    The intensive personal coaching by the department is aimed at the individual interest of the student, a thing I was absolutely not used to in Germany. This meant a lot to me, especially in the first years of my study. A talk with a career counsellor helps me to focus again in the ‘jungle’ of art and dance, and makes me see my actual objective again as a maker.

    In view of the current financial developments in the art sector, it is probably not the best time to graduate as a young maker. Production houses are disappearing, and as a result there is not much support for young makers. However, against the background of this general depressing ‘crisis mood’, I try to see the current developments in the art section as a challenge. I want to see it as an opportunity to question the existing theatre world, show a new form of theatre, and find new ways for a life as an artist. The last thing, in particular, requires entrepreneurship. During my study I took part in various projects and played at festivals outside school, such as Festival Cement and theatre festival Boulevard. At the moment I am setting up the foundation ‘Hype Art’, together with my fellow-student Anastasia Schwarzkopf. With this foundation we want to make new performances, and we are negotiating with theatres and with new makers programmes in the south of the Netherlands. It’s my dearest wish to set up my own theatre, where I can produce and perform my own pieces and work together with other disciplines and makers."
  • Rutger Martens, bachelor Music Rockacademie

    Rutger Martens

    Rockacademie Rutger Martens foto Stijn v Lith en Loes Loonen

    Graduate (2012) Bachelor Dance (Choreography)

    ““The Rockacademie is the first school that makes studying pop music, in the broadest sense of the word, and pop-music business possible. At a very early age I knew that I wanted to do something with music, and I thought that the Rockacademie suited me better than a conservatory. I went to the academy with a fairly open mind. I had certain expectations, of course, but I didn’t know exactly what was in store for me. I did find out, however, that you have to take the initiative as much as possible and that you must make sure that you learn what you want to learn."
    "This goes for more creative study programmes. These programmes have a lot to offer and are breeding places for talent. They guide you and help you discover who you are and what you want to say as an artist. The sooner you know what you want yourself, the more you can get out of your study. In the future you will be your own boss, and the sooner you start the better.

    My perspective is based on a mixed professional practice. I play my own music in various bands and
    set-ups. I also present myself as a session musician, working both in a studio and live. And, last but not least, I teach at Rock Station, a preparatory course for music study programmes at hbo (higher professional education) level.”
  • Laureen Peskens, Master of Music

    Laureen Peskens

    Master of Music Laureen Peskens foto Eline de Jong

    Master of Music (Music Theatre)

    “I have chosen ‘Master of Music’ because I felt that there was so much more to learn after my bachelor’s degree programme ‘Music’ (Music Theatre). During this master’s degree programme you have a number of compulsory subjects to get a more in-depth knowledge of your specialization. In addition, you can decide for yourself what other subjects you take, what your research is about, and how you divide the study load. The most important thing I learned in the first year is to be independent. You are responsible for everything you do, which is so different from the coaching and
    supervision during the bachelor’s programme. During the master’s degree programme, you can turn to a coach though to help you make a choice of main subjects and a research subject."
    "My specialization in the Master is Fado and Spanish folk music, which is not exactly Music Theatre, but which can certainly be made into a theatrical concept. I needed many external teachers to help me with this. Next year I’ll be off to Argentina for four months to study singing, write lyrics, and make the performance for my final exam. I have wild plans: I want to record a CD linked to a fantastic performance. Everything is possible as long as you organise it yourself and go for it completely.”
  • Sarah Mancini, bachelor Dance

    Sarah Mancini

    Graduate (2013) Bachelor Dance

    “When I finished my secondary school there was one thing I knew for sure: I was going to do a degree programme in dance! Several students had told me that such a study programme was good for your individual development and also provided a good basis for further study. The programme focuses both on the artistic and the commercial side of the professional field and educates allround dancers."

    Looking back on my study here at the Dance Academy and the way I have developed, I’m glad I chose this study programme. Every year the emphasis was placed on different aspects: the first two years were very intensive and technical, and my last two years were very creative and experimental.

    The study has formed me as a dancer and as a person. I have had the chance to develop myself, to discover the world of dance, and to find my way in that world. For a period of four years I received good coaching from different teachers, and each teacher taught me something that I carry with me for the rest of my life. I am quite an independent person by nature and I won’t easily ask for guidance or get stressed, but a number of fellow-students certainly benefited from the guidance provided. When they couldn’t see the wood for the trees, there was always someone to keep an eye on them and to put them back on track. It is a physically hard study and the future is rather insecure, so it is nice when someone gives you a good advice once in a while.

    My future looks bright. In the past year I have been able to work fulltime as a dancer, and it looks like this may continue for another year. After that, I want to go to New York for a year to raise my level still further.’