Marco Gerris

Marco Gerris is director and artistic director of ISH Dance Collective. Actually, he is much more, for he never wants to choose.

The Filipino-born grew up in Belgium, cycling from gymnastics to violin lessons before opting for judo and the saxophone after all. Even after secondary school, it is difficult for the energetic creative to stay in one place. He pursues studies at the Antwerp Theatre School Herman Teirlinck, the Higher Institute for Dance Pedagogy and Open Living Theatre but never really finds his niche anywhere.

"The name ISH comes from the English suffix '-ish"

In the late 1990s, he pledges his heart to Amsterdam, where he starts working as a dancer, skater and actor. He was elected Dutch Freestyle Skating Champion and performed in several productions, including the musical 'Eindeloos' and performances by dance group AYA. Besides this, he can often be found in the Vondelpark, making connections and friendships with skaters, dancers and actors.

In 2000, his new network inspired him to create his first piece: ISH. The name is derived from the English suffix '-ish' ('-like), a word that stands for something you cannot exactly define, because it is both one and the other.

Marco: 'During a meeting with an American dancer, I talked about everything I want to do, everything I find inspiring and about my reluctance to choose just one discipline.' He told me:

"You are ISH, you’re a bit of everything and that’s your strength."