After two years of corona, Old Sunderklaas will finally be celebrated again on Texel next Monday. During the party, the highs and lows of the past year are reenacted in every village, ‘speulen’ in Texels. The ‘Speulers’ are disguised and ridicule current events.

    This year you can play again with Ouwe Sunderklaas – Texelse Courant

    Short performances are played in all villages. In the northernmost village of De Cocksdorp, the living rooms are even the backdrop for the players. In the other villages, an act is performed on the street that is judged by a jury.

    Ouwe Sunderklaas has been off the agenda for a number of years due to the corona pandemic. A great loss for many regular players, including Texel resident Peter Jan Geus. The plumber has been ‘playing’ since he was five years old. “I’m 51 now, so you know how long I’ve been doing this.” Whether he will participate this year remains to be seen. “Two hernias”, is the explanation. “But I expect to be back on Monday.”

    “The preparation is also very nice. That is laughing, screeching, roaring”

    Speuler Peter Jan Geus

    The subject that will be depicted on Monday 12 December is not yet known. “I think many don’t know it yet,” he says. “Personally, the best ideas come under pressure. Fortunately, we have a quiet weekend for Ouwe Sunder. So then we think of something. The preparation is also very nice. That is laughing, screeching, roaring,” he says. The best thing is when the topic is topical. “People remember that well. So preferably something that will happen this week. Then you can respond to current events.”

    Peter Jan Geus (middle black wig) has been playing with Ouwe Sunderklaas for years

    Almost everyone on Texel takes part in Ouwe Sunderklaas in one way or another. Children grow up with the tradition, see it on the street, hear about it or see it from their parents, family or friends. Nowadays, the tradition is also taught in schools. Geus hopes that this will continue for the time being. “Because you’ve seen the enthusiasm decline in recent years. Where you used to pull the cars through Den Burg in a long line, that’s less now.”

    “Of course there are always people in the audience that you want to make fun of”

    Speuler Peter Jan Geus

    According to Geus, the disadvantage of playing is that you cannot see the other players. “Especially in De Cocksdorp I would like to see where people play in the living rooms. That is an achievement in itself, because you cannot enter the living rooms with a large cart.”

    The play begins with the first jury. “That comes naturally. And of course you also try to involve the audience. That interaction is fantastic. And of course there are always people in the audience that you want to make fun of”, he says with a laugh.

    For the youth there is a party tent on the Groeneplaats, after they have played – Texelse Courant

    Although Ouwe Sunderklaas is a party for the elderly, the youth is also thought of. There is a party tent on the Groeneplaats in Den Burg especially for them. Of course, the party in the tent is completely alcohol-free. Visitors from the age of 18 are welcome in the catering industry, but those under 18 are not.

    The party and the appointments are an initiative of Young4Ever, the hospitality industry in Den Burg, the police and the municipality. “This year there are no more corona restrictions,” says mayor Michiel Uitdehaag. “The following applies to both youth and adult residents: we are going to meet a beautiful Old Sunderklaas, as usual.”

    Visitors to the catering industry must show their ID upon entry. Access is denied to people without valid identification. This also applies to visitors under the age of 18.

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