Astrid De Haes & Mona Thijs


Astrid De Haes started dancing when she was six and has since had a great interest in movement and the body. She studied Autonomous Design at the School of Arts in Ghent. As a master’s thesis, she conducted preliminary research for her performance Untitled 1. This creation with four dancers and five musicians, and music by Abel Ghekiere, was selected for the 2021 edition of Antwerp’s new makers festival Love at first Sight. In 2021, Astrid also created the dance solo After All together with and for Pierre Bastin, which was shown in the mobile open-air theater De Carrousel in Antwerp.

Mona Thijs graduated with a master’s degree in Word Art and an educational master’s degree in Drama from the Royal Conservatory of Antwerp. Her short stories appeared in the literary magazine DW B and columns in De Standaard and Klasse. Under the wings of theater workshop HETGEvolg in Turnhout, she and musician Elias Durnez supervised a music theater program for foreign-speaking newcomers. She also created Playlist van de pluk, a multilingual radio series in which she worked with the music, stories and languages of seasonal workers in the Haspengouw fruit picking industry. Mona is currently working on her debut novel.

In residentie Blueberries leave bruises on the skin

In the trilingual (Dutch, English, French) dance theater performance Blueberries leave bruises on the skin, three players ask themselves the question: in what ways can we immortalize ourselves? And where does the urge to do that come from?

In an endless-looking white space, they look for ways to be remembered, from heroic to small, from kitsch to painfully honest. The questions gradually arise: why is immortalization so important? Isn’t life itself enough? And can you immortalize yourself if you don’t even know who you are now?

Blueberries leave bruises on the skin is a colorful collection of attempts to find and transcend yourself, a celebration of human hubris, an ode to life, a party where no one wants to leave first, an increasingly unstable interplay of three figures who are looking for to himself.

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