The National Theater has The Hague as its home city and has a national role when it comes to knowledge sharing and the production of new stories. GRRR has successfully portrayed this position in the powerful and clear corporate branding. A beautiful foundation that we can build on for years.
Pronounced and fresh: socially involved the HNT way
Artistic Director Eric de Vroedt is internationally recognized as the precursor of a new generation of theater makers. The enthusiastic foreman attracts attention with a fresh approach with which he is able to connect theater and audience in a better way. How? By producing pieces that are now relevant and by responding to today’s media use. What does Netflix mean in theater and how up to date can a theater play be?
We created a distinct style for HNT. Bold, not modest, but straightforward. Just like the Hague residents. It is their theater after all. We believe, just like HNT, that theater sets things in motion. The frame gives every expression a stage; a space in which we clearly state why we make theater. That clarity is enhanced by typography; a more stately serif font gives the frame cachet, while the letters inside have a more straightforward character. Together they show why precisely this is on the program. It attracts you. Demands your attention.
Content is king
Journalistic photography is part of branding. Here again you see bold, raw and topical elements. With Gordon Meuleman’s street photography, among other things, we show things the way they are: natural light, no styling and no retouching. A reportage instead of advertising. This is how we make photography work as a carrier of identity. This does not fit a dime-a-dozen brochure. That is why, together with HNT, we produce high-quality theater brochures as content-related magazines that we enjoy reading.
GRRR was convincing in the pitch. They managed to capture the apparent maze of expectations, assignments and unspoken opinions, all of which belong to the merging of four theater companies into one national institution. For Het Nationale Theater, they created the image of an organization at the center of society, open to current events, rooted in tradition.
A useful design system
After an extensive pitching process, Het Nationale Theater (HNT) chose GRRR as a partner for the new strategy, branding, campaign and digital integrations. HNT was in an important strategic phase: in the middle of a merger, a new artistic leader, and above all; a new brand that needed to be built. HNT is a merger of the Koninklijke Schouwburg, the Nationale Toneel and Theater aan het Spui. This playing field makes HNT a challenging brand to build.
Theaters, production houses, rentals, education. In The Hague and everywhere in the country. This requires a handy design system that is useful to the organization in all its faces. We created one logo for the entire National Theater institute. Simple and clear. With labels for the different departments.
Typical for The Hague
The Hague is an important source of inspiration for HNT and this branding. And is also evident in the campaign with which we are launching the new style. The contrast between rich and poor, sand and peat. The Hague as a center of power, but also The Hague as a city with both a large loyal traditional theater audience and a city with above-average numbers of young people. This makes The Hague an exciting city where the experiment is embraced faster than elsewhere.
Change as a brand
GRRR likes to think along in a broad sense and has a lot of experience in getting various parties involved in a creative process. That is what we did here as well. We started with conversations throughout the organization: from the doorman to the education department, in order to properly understand the people and needs of the organization. We make this research practical in implementation.
We have now been working with HNT for 4 years as their regular partner for design and digital. In 2017 we delivered a strategy and within a short period of time a first brand identity. After 1.5 years, when the dust of the merger had settled, we continued to build on the current identity with that new knowledge and experience. As an agency, we are proud of the confidence that we will continue to get in the long-term relationship.