• Floor Houwink ten Cate © Eva Roefs

Floor Houwink ten Cate

FLOOR HOUWINK TEN CATE

Director and writer Floor Houwink ten Cate (1987) creates urgent performances on the intersection of music theatre, opera, and film based on personal questions of conscience. In her visual and physical portraits, she celebrates the discomfort and pain of life by reducing major moral dilemmas to human proportions and blowing up underexposed problems to absurd proportions. With the Nineties Productions collective, she won the 2017 BNG Bank Theatre Prize for the performance Untitled, 2017.

Floor stood out with her directorial debut Merkel (Nineties Productions & Orkater, 2019), a performance about the underdog from the DDR who would eventually be the most powerful woman in the world. Based on childhood memories, biographical sources, speeches, and encounters, the makers paint a musical portrait of this seemingly egoless woman and the divided Europe she leaves behind. Merkel is an electro-opera about the struggle between idealism and realism and the quest for a new shared narrative.

In 2020, Floor created her first performance at Frascati Producties. The everyday life of an everyday woman (originally: Het standaard leven van een standaard vrouw) is a cinematic death scene with a larger-than-life soundtrack of a woman seeing her life pass before her one last time. How do you take stock of a life lived entirely on the sidelines of history? In One Man Show (Frascati Producties, 2021), her second production at Frascati Producties, she takes a closer look at the role of the male. What do we regard masculinity in 2021? One Man Show is a feminist stand-up (or step-down) solo by Benjamin Moen and Floor Houwink ten Cate about the emancipation and transformation of the contemporary male.

Season 2021-2022 will see the release of Sea of Silence (Frascati Producties, 2022): a cinematic and kaleidoscopic performance about that which is often kept quiet and reported only in extreme cases: mental and physical violence in (intimate) relationships. In a kitchen, a bedroom, a bathroom, and on the psychologist's couch, this piece explores the boundaries of control, blackmail, repression, and violence between lovers and between parents and children in everyday life. Based on true stories, scientific research, documentaries, novels, and Hollywood films, three actors tell a mosaic story in 99 scenes that constantly shift the perspective of perpetrator and victim.

'The cinematic images are incredibly strong, and the portrayal of her death is unequaled. Vulnerable, fragile, and powerful at the same time.' de Theaterkrant on The everyday life of an everyday woman.

'[…] This delightful opera parody is followed in all seriousness by the famous 'Wir schaffen das' speech, delivered in the soberest, sincerest, and most non-theatrical way possible by Benjamin Moen. Gripping.' ★★★★ de Volkskrant on Merkel

'The latest feminist wave inescapably splashes across the stage.' Volkskrant critics vote Merkel one of the top ten performances of 2018/2019

After earning a bachelor's degree from the Netherlands Film Academy, Floor Houwink ten Cate graduated cum laude from Utrecht University in 2013 with a Master's degree in Theatre Studies. She became a Newcomer at Orkater and, between 2015 and 2020, was co-artistic director of the Nineties Productions collective, with whom she made the performances Untitled, 2017 (BNG Bank Theaterprijs), Noir (2017), and Billy the Kid (2018), among others. She was assistant director for Boogaerdt/VanderSchoot on several occasions, did the final direction for Permanent Destruction: The HM Concert and Pain Against Fear (Naomi Velissariou & Theater Utrecht, 2019 and 2020), and directed the electro-opera Merkel (Nineties Productions & Orkater, 2019). 

Performances

  • Dance Me to the End of Love (Frascati Producties, 2023)
  • Sea of Silence (Frascati Producties, March 2022)
  • One Man Show (Frascati Producties, 2021)
  • The everyday life of an everyday woman (Het standaard leven van een standaard vrouw, Frascati Producties, 2020)
  • Merkel (Nineties Productions & Orkater, 2019)

as part of the collective Nineties Productions

  • Memento Mori (Nineties Productions, 2020)
  • Billy the Kid (Nineties Productions & Touki Delphine, 2018)
  • Noir (Nineties Productions & Paradiso Melkweg Productiehuis, 2017)
  • Untitled, 2017 (Nineties Productions & Paradiso Melkweg Productiehuis, 2017)
  • We Are Here (Nineties Productions & Paradiso Melkweg Productiehuis, 2016)
  • Naar Bukowski (Nineties Productions & Paradiso Melkweg Productiehuis, 2015)