Event Details

On Friday, February 8th, 2018 we invite you to I LOVE ADRIAEN – A Tribute to the early rebel of New Netherland. This evening is about Adriaen van der Donck (1618-1655), the first lawyer in the Dutch colony, a leader in the political life of New Amsterdam, and a rebel who made an effort for a Dutch-style republican government in the Dutch West India Company-run trading post. An evening with a play, introduced by a short lecture, will be a tribute to and all about the early Dutch rebel of New Netherland.


  • An introduction by Adriaen’s biographer Julie van den Hout. She will talk about his life, his deep admiration for New Netherland and his early vision.
  • I LOVE ADRIAEN, a monologue play by Gerhardus van Wilgen. The narrator, performed by Annemarie Hagenaars, comes to terms with the disappearance of her estranged step-sister Mary, who fell for a man who’s born 400 years ago. He is an ambitious Dutch lawyer who had big plans for America. Inspired by the Beguine mystics Mary ventures into the wilderness to find her love; Adriaen van der D…
  • A short conversation and Q&A about Adriaen’s important legacy and how this influenced present-day New York’s mentality and society.

Historian Russell Shorto argued that Van der Donck was an early American patriot with a very important legacy, who was forgotten by history because of the eventual English conquest of New Netherland. With this evening at TNC, we will try to change this a little and bring a tribute to this early Dutch rebel of New Netherland.

Julie van den Hout, an independent scholar from San Francisco, was inspired to look into Adriaen’s life after reading Russell Shorto’s The Island at the Center of the World. Having lived in Breda, Adriaen’s hometown, Julie could not help but wonder who the person Adriaen was and what motivated him to take on the causes of the colony. Her curiosity resulted in the 2018 book, Adriaen van der Donck, A Dutch Rebel in Seventeenth-Century America.
Gerhardus van Wilgen, a writer from Voorhees (NJ), interviewed Julie about her book for ‘Dutch-the Magazine’ and he got the idea to write a play about Adriaen. Or to be more specific, a play about a modern-day scholar’s relationship with Adriaen. The play was part of the Philadelphia Fringe Festival last year. It is a monologue and will be performed by Dutch-New York actress Annemarie Hagenaars.



TNC-Members: FREE   |   Non-members: $15
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