A warm goodbye to Elske, STET’s longtime artistic director
This last year brought many changes to the theatre world, and we are not done. As STET’s founder and longtime artistic director Elske van Holk-van Eysinga is going on retirement, she is succeeded by Tom Dello, our new artistic director. On June 23, we said goodbye to Elske at a farewell party in Theater aan het Spui, during which she was knighted by the mayor of Wassenaar. She will be missed tremendously by STET’s staff and audience. We wish her all the best for her retirement this year and we also congratulate her on her knighthood.
Elske established STET in 2006 and brought important, fun, endearing, engaged and mesmerizing performances by successful and emerging artists from all over the globe to The Hague. For her achievements in creating a solid ground for English-spoken theatre to international and national audiences in the Netherlands, the prestigious award “Ridder in de Orde van Oranje Nassau” was bestowed upon Elske by the mayor of Wassenaar, Leendert de Lange.
With a small group of invitees and lots of international friends and artists who connected through Zoom, we raised our glass to Elske’s years of work and never-ending dedication to STET. The event was kept a secret until Elske walked into the theatre, where she bumped into a heartfelt programme full of theatre, speeches, a quiz and warm words from colleagues and friends. New artistic director, Tom, handed over a beautiful portrait in the name of all, accompanied by the words, “We have a portrait of you for you, because we all need an Elske in our lives and you should not be an exception”.
Elske had a chance to thank everybody present and she was sure to mention that the biggest gift everybody can give her is to keep visiting STET’s upcoming shows and support the new team. As we continue in Elske’s legacy, we acknowledge that she is an inspiration to us all at STET and at the many cultural organisations she has lent her efforts to. We will stay in touch and look forward to seeing her around at our future shows.
Despite her retirement, Elske will definitely not be sitting still in the years to come. One of her next projects is to walk the “Tour de Mont Blanc” this September to raise funds for Stiching Melania. You can find updates on her personal page and donate by clicking here.