all rights reserved    |    copyright © les ballets C de la B    |    2017

Kurt Van der Elst (concept & design)
Feel Good Inc (Vince Vervliet) (realisation)
Edith Ulens (final editing)
Nele Dhaese (editing)

Alain Platel, Carine Kesteleyn, Chris Van der Burght, Filip Dujardin, Giannina Urmeneta Ottiker, Hans Roels, Ilse Joliet, Jean-Pierre Stoop, Johan Grimonprez, Kurt Van der Elst, Lieven Thyrion, Luk Monsaert, Mark Hoflack, Michel Burez, Ming Pao Weekly, Paul Brunner, Phile Deprez, Sven Augustijnen, Tristram Kenton, Ursula Kaufmann, Willy Van Der Meer, Lisi Estaras, Lazara Rosell Albear, Fatou Traoré, Sofie De Backer, Jan Mergaert, Fred Debrock, Patrick De Spiegelaere, Joana Patita, Viola Berlanda, Helena Goncalves, Herman Sorgeloos, Thomas Dhanens, Danny Willems, Jan Vesala, Toni Ferre


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Statement in response to the subsidy cuts

We would like to quote the writer Amin Maalouf: in times of crisis, it is better for society to invest in Education, Science and Culture, because we cannot expect the banking industry or business sector to come up with creative solutions.

Investing in heritage like Bokrijk on the one hand and making substantial cuts (of up to 60%) to project subsidies (relatively small subsidy amounts for starting artists) on the other, is contradictory. As we see it, today’s young talent are tomorrow’s heritage...

We are particularly worried about public statements like the one made recently by Peter De Roover, a member of the party that will be managing the culture budget in the years to come. In “De Afspraak”, a programme on Flemish television, De Roover stated: “There used to be a time when our artists at least had a keener eye for beauty”. Is he suggesting, perhaps, that it falls to politics to define what constitutes beauty and, based on that judgment, that politics should dictate who is entitled to what support?

We cannot shake the feeling this trend is slowly manifesting itself as it is. We can already see every conceivable form of self-censorship rearing its ugly head around us. We hope, however, that the public remain highly vigilant with us. That, together, we can put up a radical resistance against this evolution. Because places like these are the only and increasingly rare sanctuaries where beauty can be redefined time and again.

We spend 10% of our subsidies to developing new talent (e.g. Co-laBo), we share our infrastructure, turning every euro we receive into three and taking our cultural products across borders, to the four corners of the world. Can the Flemish government say the same thing?

If cuts have to be made, we want to take a seat at the decision-making table, help assess the situation at the broadest level, and not be relegated to a corner where we have to scramble for whatever crumbs fall off it. After all, we have become quite the experts at making the most out of less.