Vanja Rukavina | Het Nationaal Theater



  • Tuesday
  • 29 /09 September
  • 20:30 Hour
  • Sold out

Concept, text and performance: Vanja Rukavina
Music: Jimi Zoet

A one-man show on the wonderful world of language

If two people do not share a language, they cannot understand each other. Simple. But, if you understand even one word of someone else’s speech, you are presented with a problem. You have entered the world of another culture, another way of doing things, maybe even a different way of thinking.
Naturally, in this performance, language is central. Communication is a bridge between cultures, but it’s also a barrier. How can particular words, and even rules of grammar, determine thinking patterns, world visions and culture? Why is it impossible to create a ‘true’ translation? And can you disconnect language from feeling or experience?
This performance includes strobe lighting and has English surtitles.

About Vanja Rukavina
Vanja Rukavina was born in 1989 in Sarajevo, formerly Yugoslavia. In 1992 his parents took him and fled the country during civil war and came to the Netherlands. In 2011, Vanja graduated from the Acting course at the Maastricht Theater Academy.
In 2018, he was in the marathon show The Nation at Het Nationale Theater. Directed by Eric de Vroedt, Vanja won an ‘Arlecchino: Best Contributing Male Role’ at the Theater Awards for his performance. In April 2019, De wereld volgens John (The World According to John, a spin-off of The Nation) premiered, with Vanja again among the cast.
Over the past seven seasons at Toneelgroup Amsterdam and International Theater Amsterdam, Vanja has appeared in several performances, including Nobody Home, directed by Daria Bukvić (2014 - 2016). He has also been cast in a number of films, including Flikken Maastricht (2013), Overspel (2015) and I Know Who You Are (2018).
Vanja also has a portfolio of his own work, including From Russia with Love (2013), for which he won ‘Best International Production’ at ITS Festival. His dance performance BOKKO The Ultimate Fusion (2014 - 2018) has reached over 100 shows both in the Netherlands and internationally in the past few years.


Language is een ­intrigerende soort van Ted-talk. Sterk van inhoud, technisch ­perfect en spannend om naar te kijken.

- Trouw | | Sterk

Language is een ijzersterke performance over de kracht en beperking van woorden en de rol van taal in ons dagelijkse leven.

- Scenes | | Sterk

Vanja Rukavina toont hoe een nieuw geleerde taal een brug slaat naar een andere cultuur, maar ook een barrière kan vormen.

- De Volkskrant