'Collaboration is the driving force behind Octagon Blues. It is the point of departure for any project or idea and it is at the base of creativity and resourcefulness. We've come to thoroughly understand the importance of deriving wisdom and inspiration from a variety of sources. Different skill sets, offer different insights. Constantly (re)shaping an environment for people, their disciplines and their artistry to meet and inform one another, is what shapes the collective's cross-disciplinary identity.'
Rotterdam based cross-disciplinary art collective ‘Octagon Blues’, is the accumulation of three contemporary dancers with a strong love for electronic music. Jeroen Janssen, Rodrigo Ribeiro and Samuel van der Veer, come from Maastricht(NL), Porto (PT) and Rotterdam (NL) respectively and met in 2017 during their Bachelor of Dance at Codarts University of the Arts. There, they frequently collaborated on creating and performing contemporary dance. But it wasn’t until 2019, that they found out about their shared ambitions of becoming interdisciplinary artists. Not long after, the decision to form a collective was made. Transforming those ambitions into goals was a slow process as in the meantime their attention was divided towards shaping their individual futures as contemporary dancers. Over the course of that year, they were ensured of apprenticeship and job offers with world renowned dance companies like: ICK Amsterdam, Gothenburg Danskompani and Nederlands Dans Theater 2 (NDT2).
The collective strongly relates to its members’ identities as interdisciplinary artists, having backgrounds not only in contemporary dance, but also in: music production, visual arts and DJing. Leading, in shaping the collective's wide-ranging identity, was the vibrant city of Rotterdam. Where from early on the collective was exposed to a wide array of theatre, performances and a diverse, ever-changing club/music scene. With Rotterdam as a constant stimulus, eventually led up to their self-released debut EP titled 'OB-1'.