Are you desperately waiting to meet your soulmate and live happily ever after? Neither are we. That’s why this year we’re not celebrating Valentine’s Day but crushing Cupid’s dreams. The commodification of our private and romantic lives is something we should resist. Especially because it is accompanied by widely spread normative values ​​that deny the countless ways of loving that exist. Let’s celebrate queerness, ethical non-monogamy, friendship and self-love. Together we counter the persistent ideal of a successful love life.

20:00-20:10 | Film Screening IN SYNC by Anna Beerends
20:10-20:45 | Panel discussion
20:45-20:55 | Stem van de Stad - Street Interviews about Valentines Day
20:55-21:25 | Panel discussion
21:25-21:30 | Closing

About the speakers

If there is one thing that is important to Tijn de Jong , it is staying soft. In a world that is becoming increasingly hardened, he actively wants to believe in the power of empathy and gentleness. Engage in conversation from person to person and stand next to each other instead of opposing each other. Tijn is a theater maker, actor, speaker and activist. On his Instagram, he shares his own experiences and discusses social issues. His goal is to break taboos and reduce prejudice, stereotypes and discrimination. As a transgender and non-binary person, Tijn is an expert in the field of sexual and gender diversity. The common theme in his work is his personal experiences, both around his gender identity and sexuality, and around his experiences with sexual violence and trauma. Tijn hopes to provide a piece of representation that he himself has missed enormously. He is actively committed to the emancipation and inclusion of the LGBTQIA+ community and to an open-minded, but above all, softer world.

Taneesha Sijmons is a sensuality coach, a relationship & intimacy coach and an erotic artist & performer who empowers and guides souls through the deeply transformative concepts and arts of sensuality, intimacy, love, body work, movement and eroticism in their journey towards deepening the relationship with themselves, their partner(s), their bodies, sexuality and sensual self-expression.

Anna Beerends is the director of ‘In Sync,’ a short movie created for Queer Film Festival Utrecht and a philosophy student with a research interest in critical theories and queer theory. Her movie ‘In Sync’ aims to visualize queer joy and representation, countering the heteronormative discourse of queer love as complicated ‘other’ and focusing on the positive aspects of community and queerness.

Djoeke Ardon is a researcher on gender and gender-based violence. Besides that, once a month she guides a group in which people can talk about and share their experiences with non-monogamy.