nearSunny Verboom (34) and her good friend Julius Geligense (49) create the children’s online series Onder de Rainbow. The two want to introduce kids to everyday topics like love, friendship and identity in a more casual way. “I want to make everything negotiable,” says Sani.
“We address issues briefly and lightly. Humor is an important factor in this. We want to show children all the possibilities and broaden their horizons at an early age. This way they learn that there is nothing crazy or strange and that their situation is “normal”.
Children from Arnhem participate
In each episode of Under the rainbow, presenter Sanne and two puppets, Meneertje T and Juffie Wauw, played by Julius, deal with a different theme. Furthermore, Sanne tells a story with self-made drawings. In the episode Cloud Wisdom, a child from Arnhem speaks. “The children want to be in the series,” says Sani. “In Cloud Wisdom they tell their view of the world and I find it interesting every time what they say.”
Flipper and stylish doll
Julius talks about the two characters he plays with dolls. “Mr. T is a flapper and a bit stupid, while Miss W is very elegant and sensible. The two are opposites of each other. We soon notice that children are fascinated by the dolls.” Sani continues: “They did a good job. I knocked on the door of a puppet developer from Huisje Boompje Beestje and Otje, among others. In the end, it took a couple of months before Mr. T and Goofy Wow were ready.”
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Bring puppets to life
The idea for the series originated in the first lockdown. Sani: “I’ve wanted to make something for kids for a long time and don’t like sitting still. That’s why I decided to turn my ideas into something tangible. I wanted the series to look professional right away, so I enlisted the help of friends. I wanted Julius to bring the puppets to life.”
“Since there are only two of us, filming episodes is a long process,” Sanne continues. Julius adds, “Often we need to shoot one ten-minute episode.” Sunny says this is because there was no director checking if everything was going well during the shoot. “We can only see after that whether the registration was successful or not.”
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Communication with parents
Sunny and Julius hope parents will be excited about the series and show the episodes to their children. Sani: “Children can watch the episodes alone, but they can also watch them with their parents. This way they can talk to each other about certain topics.”
For all and no taboos
“Why is the name under the rainbow? The name of the series means it’s for every child. The rainbow flag is a symbol of the LGBTQ+ community and I interpret that as everyone’s welcome. Everyone can watch the episodes and there is no taboo topic.”
Cooperating with Mayor Margoush
The second season has ended and preparations for the third season have begun. Sani: “For the next season, we like to visit people who are doing something beautiful or important. By visiting with the puppets, we hope we can translate their message into one for children. We asked Mayor Markusz about the series and he was immediately excited. Anyway, we hope we can of visiting him.”
Under the Rainbow can be watched for free on Youtube. The duration of each episode is ten minutes. Sanne is trained as a film director and Julius is a light and sound technician, making the episodes together. Are you curious what it looks like in Sani’s house? indebuurt already looked inside it.
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