Founder Dance in Art

Find your voice through Movement

“HAARLEM, NETHERLANDS, September 9, 2014, Martine Elizabeth van Santen, Artistic and Business Director of Dance in Art has been recognized for showing dedication, leadership and excellence in choreography and business management. Ms. van Santen wears many hats as the artistic and business director of Dance in Art.”

Martine van Santen

For Martine van Santen (1982), an internationally renowned dancer, choreographer and instructor, art allows her to express the essence of her existence in this world. Although she has inspired countless audiences on stages around the world, she felt a desire to give back through her artistry, experience the emotion that comes with dancing for a cause, and help others find their voices through movement. She enrolled in a master’s program at the Utrecht School of the Arts while teaching dance at Transvaal College and completing an apprenticeship with Young in Prison. Little did she know that working with these groups in tandem would provide her with the insight and experience to establish Dance in Art, a center for dance, art education and performance training. Ms. van Santen encourages her performers to research various modes of art to actualize their full potential and find their artistic points of view. She developed this learning model while working on her master thesis, which focused on dance expression and art methodologies for young offenders and young adults with severe psychiatric disorders. Applying what she learned through her research, Martine has helped dancers from various backgrounds find their unique styles and develop their personal abilities.

Ms. van Santen has more then 10 years of experience in choreography, having recently become the artistic and business director of Dance in Art. As an organizational expert, she juggles many tasks, from serving as the artistic director and choreographer of the studio, as well as overseeing scheduling, handling finances and teaching.

Looking back, Ms. van Santen attributes her success to her education and her experiences working in the Netherlands, United Kingdom and New York. She became involved in her profession through a natural chain of events stemming from her prior experiences in the field. Since graduating with her bachelor’s degree, she has worked as a dancer, choreographer and teacher for several freelance art projects and modern ballet companies. In 2006, she became the artistic director of the Contemporary Dance Company, ‘Dansgroep Haarlem,’ and in 2008 she was appointed as the European development coordinator and assistant to the director with the New English Contemporary Ballet.

Ms. van Santen received a Master of Education in Arts from the Utrecht School of the Arts in 2012, as well as a Bachelor of Performing Arts in contemporary dance and choreography from the Northern School of Contemporary Dance, where she graduated with honors in 2004. In years to come, Ms. van Santen would like to expand the company and incorporate different types of art into the company’s performances.

Dance & workshop experience: a.o. William Forsyth, Nederlands Dans Theater 2, Henri Oguike, Jasmin Vardimon Dance Company, Random Dance Company, Trisha Brown, Scottish Dance Theatre and ‘Rite of Spring’ Martha Graham School of Contemporary Dance, New York, United States.


2022: ‘Silver Moon’ Verhalenhuis, Haarlem
2022: ‘#METOO’, Verhalenhuis, Haarlem

2022: ‘Four Seasons’ De Krakeling, A’dam
2022: ‘The Unknown’, Theater de Luifel, Heemstede
2021: ‘Seed of Memory’ Verhalenhuis, Haarlem
2020: ‘Struggle for Life’ Broedplaats Bogota, A’dam

2019: ‘Odette & Odile’ Toneelschuur, Haarlem
2018: ‘Ave Maria’, Belcanto Haarlem
2018: ‘Shooting Stars’ Toneelschuur, Haarlem
2017: ‘Memoirs of a Geisha’ Toneelschuur, Haarlem
2017: ‘Forever 27’ Haarlemmerhout Theater, Haarlem
2016: ‘Consequences Unfold’ Co-productie Gather & DiA, Haarlem
2016: ‘Carmen’ Toneelschuur, Haarlem
2016: ‘Gek, Slecht en Droevig’ Theater de Luifel, Heemstede
2015: ‘Frida Kahlo’ Lichtfabriek, Haarlem
2015: ‘Opening Kunstlijn’ Haarlem Bavokerk
2015: ‘Black Flower White Flower’, Sneak Preview, DiA – DiA Spring 1, Toneelschuur Haarlem.
2014: ‘Duizend Impressies’, De Lichtfabriek, Haarlem
2014: ‘Expectations’, Theater de Luifel, Heemstede
2014: ‘Desire’, Theater de Luifel, Heemstede
2014: ‘De Schoonheid’, De Lichtfabriek, Haarlem
2014: ‘Are we Connected?’, Orangerie, Overveen
2013: ‘Figee aan zee’, DiA
2013: ‘Licht op (,) die fiets!’, Grote Markt Haarlem
2013: Benefiesta, Casa de la Alegría in Bolivia, DiA
2009: ‘Troost’ New English Contemporary Ballet School, Nottingham
2009: ‘Moments in Time’ New English Contemporary Ballet 2, Nottingham
2008: ‘Grenzen’ Dansgroep Haarlem, Toneelschuur
2008: PicturePerfect Dance Productions, Røring Patronaat, Haarlem
2008: ‘Alles berust op evenwicht’ Danswerkplaats (DWP), Haarlem.
2007: ‘4 Solo’s’ DWP Haarlem, Frankrijk
2007: ‘My Grandmère’ DWP Haarlem, Frankrijk.
2006: Mei project DWP Haarlem, France
2006: ‘Closure’ DWP Haarlem
2006: ‘The Eyes’ Dansgroep Haarlem
2005: ‘In Between’, Edinburgh Festival
2005: ‘Eb en Vloed’ Open Dans Podium, Noord Holland Danst
2005: ‘Was ik Maar…’ – Provadja Danst
2005: ‘Het Wonder van de Ontmoeting’ award best choreography, by Krisztina de Châtel


2019: #METOO
2015: The Human Race
2014: A day at the Office

– Rudolf Steiner College
– Tilburg University
– Transvaal College
– Jeugd Theater School, A’dam
– The Company — Cia de Dança Deborah Colker, United Kingdom Tour
– New English Contemporary Ballet
– Danshuis Haarlem

Dance related work:
– Young in Prison
– LeineRoebana
– DansmakerS

Heel kort in het Nederlands

Martine van Santen is de oprichtster en artistiek directeur van de postdoctorale dans opleiding Dance in Art. DiA is een private opleiding voor dans, kunst en performance training.

Carrière Martine van Santen

Van Santen is in 2004 cum laude afgestudeerd in moderne dans, bewegingswetenschappen en choreografie aan de Northern School of Contemporary Dance, Leeds University in de UK. Sindsdien is zij werkzaam geweest voor verschillende freelance projecten en moderne gezelschappen als danseres, choreografe en docent door heel Europa. In 2012 behaalde zij haar master titel voor de opleiding Master of Education in Arts aan de Hogeschool voor de Kunsten in Utrecht, waar DiA aan ten grondslag ligt.

Methodiek van Martine van Santen

De methode die Martine van Santen gebruikt voor het proces van haar choreografieën is het engageren van de dansers op elk mogelijke manier. De dansers werken in opdracht van Martine van Santen, zij vormt en schaaft de bewegingen in een choreografie dat bij de DNA van de danser past. Op die manier wordt de choreografie als een perfect zittende jas één met de danser.