However, following the great success of modern dance in the Netherlands in the 1980s, in the 1990s the discipline reached an impasse. Artistic growth and public interest in dance waned. This had nothing to do with the virtuosity of the dancers themselves whose performances were of an unprecedentedly high standard. There were almost no bad dancers. The dancers came from strongly developed Dutch modern dance schools (which enjoyed great international respect) and from abroad.
However, the large number of groups and the diversity of styles were so large that not everything found its way onto the stage. The public and the producers did not always understand one another. In the hope of restoring the rapport with the audience, subsidising bodies concentrated on a few groups who were able to reach a wide audience, such as Scapino Ballet Rotterdam, Introdans and Conny Janssen Danst, while a number of self-willed adventurers such as Truus Bronkhorst and Hans Tuerlings lost ground.
With the recent departure of Kylián, the Nederlands Dans Theater must now also seek a new balance between sustaining its recognised international repertoire and daring to take new risks, which has always been the driving force behind the Nederlands Dans Theater’s success. The Dutch National Ballet has a double-pronged approach of treasuring and performing dance from the classical repertoire alongside its commission to introduce innovation into academic ballet.