Photo: Denise Amber

Homesick for a language

Is it possible to feel homesick for a language? That’s the big question behind the Pidgin X project, in which theatre maker Ahilan Ratnamohan together with the inhabitants of various cities seeks to find specifically those words, sayings and grammar that people miss when speaking another language than their mother tongue. For Pidgin X they become the Founders of a new Pidgin-language in the city where they live, a language based on all the different mother tongues which are spoken there. This is indeed how Pidgins have been developed in the cities of Leeuwarden, Groningen and Zwolle (in the Netherlands) over the last two years.

During Explore the North the Founders of these three Pidgin-languages will get together in order to jointly present the festive opening of the festival. This is going to be a celebration of differences and similarities, featuring language as the driving force it is instead of an obstacle it is often considered to be. And you too can learn how to speak Pidgin in a jiff, because as they say: In Pidgin you can’t make any mistakes. 

Pidgin X is a joint project of the artist Ahilan Ratnamohan (part of the Brusselse collectief ROBIN) and Explore the North, Leeuwarden UNESCO City of Literature and Afûk, in collaboration with the De Nieuwe Oost | Wintertuin, Noorderzon Festival of Performing Arts & Society. This project is supported by the Proeftuin Meertaligheid of We the North. Thanks to De Brakke Grond.