Performing at Oerol

For makers, artists, and musicians, Oerol is more than just a festival; it’s an invitation to pioneer with us. For over forty years, the festival has provided space for talent development, experimentation, and dialogue. Inspired by the tidal landscape of Terschelling.

Oerol focuses specifically on new forms of site-specific theatre, complemented or in interaction with dance, spoken word, visual art, design, landscape architecture, storytelling, music, and performance.

spelers ontvangen applaus na de theatervoorstelling Kaapdiegoeiekoop van theatergezelschappen Silbersee en Gouden Haas in samenwerking met Slagwerk Den Haag en Consensus Vocalis tijdens Oerol 2022.

Approximately two-thirds of the 25 site-specific performances at Oerol are created for the festival. On the island, away from your day to day, there is a focus on artistic work that is otherwise hard to find. As a festival that pushes the boundaries of site-specific arts, Oerol creates unique opportunities for artists, programmers, and peers. What makes the festival unique goes beyond just the numerous premieres.

It’s a sanctuary where artists have the opportunity to create and develop performances, together with a large and enthusiastic audience who are open to experimentation and dialogue. Subsequently, the work finds its way into the Dutch field and beyond.

Oerol is more than just site-specific theatre. The festival embraces a much broader and interdisciplinary approach.

The Expedition programme consists of visual installations and landscape art. We embrace the fact that artists are increasingly working in a multidisciplinary way. Visual art merges into theatre and performance, design reveals other worlds, and the audience exposed to projects that do not adhere to the rigid boundaries of art disciplines. The creators also seek collaborations with, among others, islanders and scientists. With many Expedition makers, we engage in multi-year trajectories. Each year, there are approximately ten Expeditions that can be experienced at your own pace during the day with a festival wristband. What makes it unique is that the artists are continuously present at the locations and engage with the audience.

Since its inception, Oerol has played an important role in the development of street theatre, a discipline through which a large audience gets acquainted with performing arts in an accessible way. Interaction occurs between performers and passersby in public spaces, even with those who do not (yet) have a specific affinity for theatre. Since 2023, street theatre has once again become an integral part of the festival after being absent for three editions due to the COVID-19 pandemic.

In addition to traditional spectacle and circus performances, we introduce new and lesser-known forms of street theatre, such as hip-hop battles and queer circus. For artists, street theatre can be an exciting first encounter with the festival.

In Oerol’s programming, music plays a significant role, with the festival hub serving as a lively stage for musical discoveries. From Dutch talents to international sounds, the musical performances reflect the diversity and depth of the festival. Artists navigate within the various opportunities of the festival. A band involved in a music theatre performance can be programmed in a different formation at the festival hub. And musicians who performed a concert and got to know Oerol then come knocking with a plan for a ten-day-long project on location, as Wende did in 2023.

'Oerol is such a vital lifeline, a kind of counterpart to those large planned projects, a place where everything can and may happen, and where different rules apply.' Wende

Programming by invitation

At Oerol, we invite artists directly to participate in our programming. Our programmers actively scout for acts, performances, and Expedition projects.

Would you still like to bring your work to the attention of our programmers? Send an email to Be sure to include a brief description of your project and a link to your website, as well as audio, visual, and/or video material.

Due to the high interest among makers, artists and theatre companies to be part of the Festival and limited time, we cannot respond in depth to all enquiries. If the artistic team is interested, we will do our best to contact you soon.

Practical information

Are you in the Oerol programme? Below you’ll find practical information regarding your journey to and stay on Terschelling.