Formal vs. Informal - Playing Maestro in Zurich


“Das ist für dich!” (that is for you) I said to my scene partner Simone. My German is not great so I was all delighted that I got the case of the word ‘du’ (you) right.

“Für Sie!” she corrected me. The case may have been right but I should have used the formal way of addressing someone. We were playing neighbors and it is not mannerly to say ‘du’ instead of ‘Sie’.

The further we got into the scene, the more I made this exact same mistake. Du. Sie! Dir. Ihnen! Over and over and over again. Speaking German definitely increases my failing frequency. It was basically all we talked about.


Afterwards I realized this tendency to speak to strangers in an informal way is also rooted in the Dutch culture. Or at least in my personality. As soon as I like them, I start addressing people in an informal way.

In that respect they can take it as a compliment. I truly like the Swiss, especially the improvisers. The city of Zurich feels for me very much like home. I spend quite some time there a couple years ago, so it was great to be back: in the city, on the stage and with the people.

I was around this Swiss city with my good friend, and fellow Pit Kitten, Jochem as we were invited to join the Maestro™. Gerry and Simone of anundpfirsich organize these monthly shows with a professionalism and liveliness that is really inspiring. It also shows in the numbers: they have been selling out for 2,5 years now.


The night we joined 10 Swiss improvisers on the stage of BLVD was no exception: the house was packed. The directors, moderator, musician, tech, volunteers and fellow players knew what they were doing, which led to a smooth and playful show. With of course only one perfect winner of the crown: Jochem ‘Mr. President’ Meijer.

I had 2 days filled with heartwarming experiences and I have the Swiss people to thank for that. So… Danke dir. I realize I don’t know you all, but I like you too much to address you formally.

A big hug goes to ♬ Simóóóne-Simóóóne ♬, Gerry, Niggi, Sven, Jochem, anundpfirsich, all the Maestro players and the 35-headed boy band.