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Poetry Unlimited: Surinam and Aruba

Saturday Night Unlimited -

The Dutch-Surinamese poet Antoine de Kom and Rosabelle Illes from Aruba have a conversation with Chris Keulemans about their work and how roots influence it. Both also read from their own work.

Antoine de Kom is of Dutch-Surinamese background and the grandson of Anton de Kom, the Surinamese nationalist and resistance fighter. De Kom spent a great deal of his youth in Surinam. His first two poetry collections reflect that time: Tropen (Tropics, 1991) and De kilte in Brasilia (The Cold in Brasilia, 1995). The volumes Zebrahoeven (Zebra Hooves, 2001) and Chocoladetranen (Chocolate Tears, 2004) followed. De Kom was nominated for the C. Buddingh Prize and the Ida Gerhardt Poetry Prize, and his latest collection, Ritmisch zonder string (Rhythmic without String, 2013) won the VSB Poetry Prize.

Rosabelle Illes debuted in 2005 with her poetry collection Beyond Insanity. In 2010 she published Spiel di mi Alma, a poetry collection in her mother tongue of Papiamento that reveals a world of contradictions to the reader. Her third book, Title (2016), is a collection of stories, poems and thoughts. On the stage, Illes transforms into a true performer of her poems, carrying away her audience in a stream of words, movement and meaning.

Tip: Rosabelle Illes also appears at Opening Night - A Free Mind on 15 January at Theater aan het Spui, during Worden Worden Zinnen - the Writers Unlimited edition on 16 January at Paard, and with Cynthia McLeod on Saturday, 18 January at the Schilderswijk Library.