Stretch Speakers


Due to the corona crisis, this event will not take place on the foreseen date. We do not want to bury our cross-border event network idea, though. We will only postpone this conference and the launch of our STRETCH network to a later date. Looking forward to meeting you later!

Meet some of the key players of the Belgian events industry scene on Wednesday 18 March in Antwerp or on Thursday 19 March 2020 in Concertgebouw Bruges.

Bartel Van Iseghem


Bartel Van Iseghem is one of the dream designers and founders of MeetMarcel, a multiple award winning Belgian event agency. Do you want to know how to reach out and stretch to an imaginary dream world? Do you want to cross the boundaries of the reality that surrounds you? Bartel will show you the way through the real life hurdles and lead you to some of the magical, original, breathtaking, smile provoking, sensual worlds he created for his subtle experience seekers. Not a surprise that MeetMarcel won the latest BeaWorld (Best Event) Award for its Media and PR event Copperhead Bartender Nights and was awarded Belgium‘s N°1 event agency 2019. Definitely a must hear talk!



Guillaume Desmet


Guillaume Desmet is the managing director of Gracias, the event and corporate hospitality agency  of the Golazo Group. Gracias helps companies to say ‘thank you’ to their clients in the most impressive, touching, heartfelt way. What about showing your utter gratitude with the thrill of a historic sports event? Experiences as a dinner in the sky, a Euro 2020 football game or the Golden Boot election take your client relationship to the next level.  Guillaume shares his knowhow on VIP treatments. Start to stretch to make a difference.


An Merlier


An Merlier is the general coordinator of the Business & Events team of Concertgebouw Brugge. This concerthall is the pride of Bruges’ many culture lovers. Not only does it stand out in the medieval city centre for its remarkable, innovative architecture, it has also impressed many with its high-end acoustics and approach to subtle, tender details. An has more than 15 years of experience in corporate events, marketing and communication and an intense cultural fondness. She is the main contact person for both B2B and B2C clients that are interested in organizing events at the Concertgebouw. Hands-on and full of entrepreneurial flair, she guides interested customers and groups through delightful experiences. Looking forward to your walk-through, STRETCH delegate?

Jan Vereecke


After his graduation as Master in Applied Economics in 1985, Jan Vereecke decided to launch the first Night of the Proms concert in Belgium, together with his former fellow student Jan Van Esbroeck. This concert formula was an immediate success and the beginning of an era of the Night of the Proms concert series. The ongoing appeal of the concerts gave Jan Vereecke and Jan Van Esbroeck the opportunity to become the managing partners and eventually also the co-owners of Antwerps Sportpaleis. Next to that, the owner duo incorporated the commercial events they organized in PSE plc, which stands for Promotion of Special Events. Trends, Belgium’s most important financial-economic magazine, awarded him and Jan Van Esbroeck marketeers of the year in 1997. Moreover, Tele Ticket Service, the full service ticketing agency he founded in 1988, together with Stefan Esselens, has since evolved to an internet company that defends its challenging position of market leader in ticket sales for events, with more than 2 million tickets sold a year. In April 2019 the Sportpaleis Group plc was taken over by Live Nation, organizer of, among others, Rock Werchter. 


Picha Theus


Picha Theus is an expert in the music and live entertainment business with her 30 years of experience in the sector. Since 2015 she has had a say in the managing and corporate sales/partnership department of Sportpaleis Group. This company owns and runs seven venues in Belgium, receiving over 2.5 million visitors per season. Antwerps Sportpaleis, one of these renowned 7, is the biggest indoor arena in Europe with a capacity of 23,000 visitors and with a stage where so many world stars excelled. Picha will lead our delegates behind the scenes of this spectacular arena and also through the secrets and hallways of that other fine-sounding Antwerp venue: Lotto Arena. Having become a Cirque du Soleil partner in 2010, she is even able to present us the warm-up of the Cirque du Soleil athletes who will be performing there that very same evening. Stretching guaranteed!


Chris Bergs


Chris Bergs is as manager B2B & Commercial Relationships of Sportpaleis Group/PSE/Live Nation responsible for a whole series of activities among which the contacts with interest groups, the development and sales of relation marketing packages, the search for commercial opportunities (sampling, sponsoring, swap agreements, partnerships, …), account management (organizational advice, media campaign support, practical organization and security), event project management (event concepting, communication, marketing, sponsoring, (media) planning, budget control, …), setting up e-commerce platforms, CRM, … Next to this demanding duty, he is also involved in the board of the Antwerp Convention Bureau. Fortunately, Chris is a tough man who charges his batteries with judo, squash and walking his dog. Let him lead us through some Sportpaleis event anecdotes and stretches.


Daan Janssens


Daan Janssens studied composition at the Ghent Conservatory. Intrigued by the study’s techniques and musical delicacies, he has not stopped attending international composition and conducting seminars and master classes ever since. In 2006, his composition for string quartet …Passages… received the first prize during the Ghent Week of Contemporary Music. Since 2008, he has intensively collaborated with LOD, a Ghent based music theatre production house. In March 2012, this cross-fertilization with visual artist Patrick Corrilon resulted in Les Aveugles, a chamber opera after work by Belgium’s literary Nobel Prize winner Maurice Maeterlinck. In 2016, he also started teaching composition and orchestration at Ghent Conservatory. In April 2017, his second opera, for which he collaborated with stage director Fabrice Murgia, was presented and widely praised: Menuet is based on a novel by the Flemish author Louis Paul Boon. This season, he has the honour to be season composer at Concertgebouw Brugge where he will offer us a punchy music stretch and a creation.