The whole picture. The whole story. what is not being said? What voice is not being heard? What perspective are we overlooking? My curiosity is not limited to humans; I am curious about non-humans as well. How do trees, animals, fungi communicate? What can we learn from them?
The question that moves you:
Who or what is not being heard?
The purpose of your life:
Whether in work, private life, as an artist, a daughter, a mother, a friend, or simply as a human being, that’s my constant pursuit—connecting. I think that’s what I do. Trying to connect, at times with myself and frequently with others. We often overlook the deep connection that binds us. Hence, the essence of this undertaking it’s all about reconnecting. It’s about prompting each other (and myself) to recognize and reestablish that fundamental connection. Connection brings understanding, recognition, room to breathe, and solutions. Without it, we’re more likely to keep reaching out, feeling really alone.
I start by watching, listening, and observing. Ideally, I come without a plan or a opinion. What’s happening? How is everything moving? What’s being said, and crucially, what’s not? Occasionally, I’ll actively interview, while other times I prefer being a silent observer. Afterward, I mold what I’ve gathered—sometimes right away in a drawing, a sound, or a question. Other times, I take more time, writing a monologue that I perform. Frequently, I might invite you to step into another perspective and speak from that point of view.
In 2001, at eighteen, I headed to Kenya with dreams of “saving the world.” I aspired to be a tropical doctor, a journalist, an anthropologist—either using my hands to save or using my voice to tell stories of salvation. However, reality hit hard. Once there, I realized there were no clear “good guys” or “bad guys.” Colleagues I trusted turned out to be corrupt, AIDS was more intricate than I imagined, and foreign aid often carried a tone of paternalism.
That’s when I turned to theater. Alongside ten Kenyan peers, we crafted a story about a family dealing with AIDS, giving everyone a voice without judgment. We performed in churches, village squares, among the Masai. While we didn’t change anything, we aimed to showcase diverse perspectives, sparking open conversations about a usually taboo topic.
Returning to the Netherlands, I pursued acting at Toneelschool in Arnhem, performed for thirteen years nationally and internationally. Yet, something bothered me. Theater audiences were a specific group, and I missed engaging with the wider world, the myriad voices, the interaction, the post-show conversations.
Over the years, I shifted from the confines of the theater to society. I trained as a acting coach at WWLA and delved into systemic work at Sacred Fire. My approach to problems now considers all angles, seeking understanding from every side.
Learn more about me:
Would you like to get in touch with Laura?
085-620 4700 or firstname.lastname@example.org