The first time I heard about the Anne Theatre show, I was pretty sceptical about it. I thought that a stage show could never do justice to the story of Anne Frank, but how wrong I was.
I accepted an invitation to go for dinner, the show and a behind-the scenes tour. I went on a Thursday evening and got the 17.15 ferry across to the theatre.
The boat takes about 20 minutes to get there, and you can order drinks on board. I wasn’t sure exactly where the ferry was and luckily I got there in the nick of time. It’s at the back of Central station just past the boat that goes to NDSM. Yo can pre-book this for EUR8.50, or you can find your own way there by bike.
Arriving at Theater Amsterdam
When we arrived we immediately went upstairs to get our dinner before the show started, which I highly recommend. A two-course meal costs EUR29.50 and a if you want a dessert you can pay the extra. The menu was small, and we were hungry so choosing didn’t take us very long.
Our starter was a sharing platter with 3 different things on it imcluding duck, fish and a vegetarian option.
I went for the swordfish with fennel and orange. It was delicious.
Dessert was a simple créme bruleé, which I thought was the best dish.
Because the show is in Dutch, they have devised a translation system, which is great. There is a screen placed at your seat where you can select the language. You listen through headphones and hear it in English at the same time as the action is happening. They also have 6 other languages including German and French. In the English version, it is the Dutch actors who have recorded the audio, which did sound a little wooden, but because of everything that’s happening in front of you it doesn’t take anything away from the experience.
If you do use the translation system, they provide the headphones – at one point the audio went a little funny in my headphones, but I found if you just unplugged them and put them back it was fixed.
As soon as the stage show started I was completely hooked. I had read the diary of Anne Frank, and been to the Anne Frank House, but I wasn’t really prepared for how real the stage show would be. The set was huge, and lifesize, so you really got a good idea of how cramped it was in the Annexe.
During the play, there were moments when I knew exactly what would happen, and my heart was still in my mouth – when they sent Margot into hiding before they went, and when they finally got discovered in the annexe. By the end I was in floods of tears because it felt so real and the ending is spectacular.
The story of Anne Frank is an emotional one, and I feel like they really did it justice.
Thank you to Theater Amsterdam for inviting me along and making this possible. As always my opinions are my own.