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on the eve

Performance dates in Theater Orpheus

July 10, 2021 20.00

July 11, 2021 20.00

July 12, 2021 20.00

13 July 2021 20.00

more dates to follow!


Theater Orpheus, Apeldoorn  

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Director and co-producer  Jori Hermsen

Producer  Mirjam Barendregt (Theatre Orpheus)

Text  Eli Asser

Game Bas Keijzer, Jessica Zeylmaker, Lester van Olffen, Peter Boven, Emma Remmelts and Marjolein den Boer.

Ensemble registration:  Anne Velten, Julia Zandvliet, Isabelle Dieperink, Kiki Bazuine, Lela Kwakernaak, Lena Jongewaard, Manouk Zandvliet and Rhodé Gerrits.

Ensemble live performances July 2021:  Anne Velten, Julia Zandvliet, Juliette van Emmerik, Kiki Bazuine, Lela Kwakernaak, Lena Jongewaard, Manouk Zandvliet and Selene Vaartjes. 

Ensemble live performances September 2021:  Anne Velten, Julia Zandvliet, Juliette van Emmerik, Kiki Bazuine, Leah Sok, Lena Jongewaard, Minne de Boer, and Selene Vaartjes. 

Scenography Trudy Hekman

costumes  Jessica  Zeylmaker

Lighting design Uri Rapaport

Assistant director Timo Lourens (2021) Elize Kuiper (2020)

Production assistant  Irene de Haan

Choreography  Sophia van der Putten

Singing coaching Melissa Vos and Irene de Haan

Music  including Tonny Eyk and Erik Woltmeijer

Moderator side program Beyke Goris

Advice Joosje Asser

Technic  Theater Orpheus

Publicity  Patricia Gillet (Theatre Orpheus)

Financial administration  Karin Nijhuis (Theatre Orpheus) 

Photography poster/flyer Sven Scholten

Thanks to  all employees of Theater Orpheus, the Asser family, Marianne Verhoeff, Theater Vooropleiding Amersfoort and all our volunteers

 JoriHermsenProductions in co-production with  Theater Orpheus

You are a nurse in a Jewish psychiatric institution and you know that the German occupier is about to collect the patients for deportation to Auschwitz. What would you do? Flight or stay? Do you choose the security of your own life or do you give up that security for the safety of others?

An autobiographical play by Eli Asser about the patients and carers of the Jewish psychiatric institution 'Het Apeldoornsche Bosch' on the eve of the deportation to Auschwitz. A play about his most dramatic war experience, more than half a century ago.

Elias (Eli) Asser (Amsterdam 1922 - 2019) was a screenwriter and lyricist. He often collaborated with Annie MG Schmidt and Harry Bannink. He gained public fame with MiMoZa, 't Schaep met de 5 pooten and Citroentje met sugar. In his last active years, after his heart attack, Asser devoted himself to work, in which his Jewish background played an important role. Then he also wrote On the Eve.

On the eve of the Nazis clearing out the Jewish psychiatric facility, the nurses are faced with the choice of fleeing or accompanying the patients to an unknown destination. Comedy writer Eli Asser was one of the nurses. Together with his girlfriend, Eefje Croiset, he fled on 21 January 1943 from the Het Apeldoornsche Bosch institution. As well as approximately 150 other staff members and 80 patients. Nearly 1,300 patients, many of them children, and 50 nurses were deported to the Auschwitz death camp in appalling conditions. None of them have returned. Of the other deported personnel, probably only fourteen people survived the camps.  

This play, about one of the most moving events in the history of Apeldoorn, has never been performed in Apeldoorn. In 2021, 76 years after the liberation, it is high time to change that. The story must still be told, even or perhaps especially in this time. Moreover, not all of us are faced with such complicated choices in our lives… whether it concerns life or death, or the future of our (grand) children. Schouwburg Orpheus and Jori Hermsen Productions have joined forces to bring this production in 2021.

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