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I got it!

Mr Dietmar & Edward


Dietmar Hertsen

A failed suburban rap artist, kicked out of school at sixteen, Dietmar Hertsen has spent his teenage years listening to foul ganster rap. After a short stint as a butcher, he eventually went to university and became a chemical engineer. He fared so well in this habitat that he decided to obtain a PhD in quantum chemistry, which he will defend this summer.

This story could be the plot for a subpar play, but the engineer missed the music. Most talks, speeches and keynote lectures lacked musicality and persuasion. Scientific conferences seemed to be temples of bad speech. Frustrated, embittered, convinced that public speaking was beyond broken, he almost gave up. Then Edward De Vooght stepped in.

Together, Dietmar and Edward founded De Redenaar (The Orator) in 2015 to revamp public speaking and rhetoric. They sought and found the perfect mix of theatre, motivational guru sessions and university lectures. Based on classical rhetoric and new insights, they playfully show what speech can do. This hobby project soon outgrew a small room filled with a couple of friends. By now, they have taught hundreds of students, coached CEOs and helped to write major political speeches, with music.

Edward De Vooght

Cicero, characteristic shirts and a glass of Verdicchio. As a student Latin and Italian Literature and Linguistics at the University of Ghent, Edward De Vooght is enchanted by Cicero, inspired by classical rhetoric and passionate about language. He enjoys reading verses of D’Annunzio at sunset with a glass of Verdicchio. Fired up by the lack of good rhetoric in modern society, he also battles for the revival of eloquence. His goal is to arm students with rhetorical bullets, reinforce debaters with deadly comebacks and sharpen the blades of political speeches. Moreover, before entering the rhetorical battlefield, appropriate rhetorical strategies are in order. Therefore, Edward aims to establish a new rhetorical science, which studies verbal persuasion in a cognitive way. Theory without practice, however, quickly becomes an ivory tower. And that is where Dietmar Hertsen stepped in. Together Edward and Dietmar founded De Redenaar (The Orator). They teach students to speak persuasively, counsel politicians effectively and train debaters meticulously. Public speaking is Edward’s passion and speaking in front of an audience, wearing one of his characteristic shirts, has even become an addiction of his.