Opera, classical music, jazz, theatre, exhibitions and festivals throughout the Netherlands – specially chosen for an international audience


Tulip Festival Amsterdam

Tulip Festival Amsterdam

The month of April will see tulips of various varieties blooming in beds and pots at 60 locations around the city of Amsterdam.For instance, there are tulips in the fountain on the Museumplein, alongside the roads on Van der Pekstraat in Noord, on the wharves outside the Eye film museum and Nemo, the science museum. Some 30,000 bulbs have been planted in beds near the Maritime Museum and 25,000 more at the Rijksmuseum.Various locations, Amsterdam, April 1 to 30.www.tulipfestival.com   More >


Opera in the cinema

Opera in the cinema

A series of operas shown live or semi-live from the Metropolitan Opera in New York in Pathé cinemas around the Netherlands.Donizetti's Roberto Devereux stars the The brilliant director Patrice Chéreau died before his brilliant version of Richard Strauss' Elektra was performed on stage. It is now performed at the Met with Nina Stemme, foremost performer of the heroic females in Strauss and Wagner, in the title role. She is joined by Waltraud Meier as her murderous mother Klytamnestra and Adrianne Peiczonka and Eric Owens as her sister and brother. The conductor is Esa-Pekka Salonen.Pathé cinemas around the country, April 30.www.pathe.nl   More >


Toon Michiels: American Neon Signs by Day & Night

Toon Michiels: American Neon Signs by Day & Night

In the mid-1970's, the Dutch photographer Toon Michiels (1950-2015) visited America a number of times, travelling in a rental car to cities such as Reno an Las Vegas. He fell under the spell of the neon signs along the highways, their big letters and playful designs appealed to Michiels, partly due to his professional background as a graphic designer. At night these neon signs were even more spectacular, forming great beacons of light against a darkened sky.Michiels decided to photograph them systematically, once by day and again by night, head-on and from the same position. The result is a series of handsome diptychs.Toon Michiels's work is unique in the history of photography, although it does display interesting parallels with the work of other artists and photographers of the 1970s: the systems of conceptual and minimal art, early artistic colour photography and the interests in popular culture, in areas such as architecture and urban planning.More than 35 years later Michiels's work has been rediscovered and re-evaluated and is being exhibited for the first time in both the Netherlands and abroad.Netherlands Photo Museum, Rotterdam until May 1.www.nederlandsfotomuseum.nl  More >


Cirque du Soleil

Cirque du Soleil

The spectacular and artistic circus company returns to the Netherlands with the show AmaLuna. It's about a mysterious island ruled by goddesses and what happens when a group of young men wash up on the shore. But it's really about the high quality of the acrobats, clowns, dancers and singers, and the amazing lighting and costumes.Big top, next to the Arena, Amsterdam, March 17 to May 1.www.cirquedusoleil.com  More >


John Cleese: The Last Time To See Me Before I Die

John Cleese: The Last Time To See Me Before I Die

John Cleese's new show may have the title Last Time To See Me Before I Die, but the Monty Python member is still trying to pay off the alimony awarded to his third wife when they divorced. 'I still have $2m of the original $22m to go,' he says.The show begins with a montage of some of the most popular clips, from the Ministry of Silly Walks and the Parrot Sketch from Python to Fawlty Towers. He then takes his audience through the early days of his career in comedy with asides, quick lines, black-and-white TV clips that showed the birth pangs of what would evolve into the Pythons and that dry acerbic humour he’s best known for.In the second half of the show, he takes a look at some of his films, such as Life of Brian and A Fish Called Wanda, and allows the audience the opportunity to ask some questions.Theater Carré, Amsterdam, May 2 and 3.www.theatercarre.nl   More >


Kenny Werner Trio

Kenny Werner Trio

Master pianist Kenny Werner brings a stylish mix of original compositions with gems from swing, bop and jazz. He performs with his long-standing trio of drummer Ari Hoenig and double bassist Johannes Weidenmueller. Their most recent album, The Melody, came as a surprise, eight years after the previous release.Bimhuis, Amsterdam, May 4.www.bimhuis.nl   More >


Heart of a Dog

Heart of a Dog

Directed by Laurie Anderson Cast: Archie as Rat TerrierPerformance artist Laurie Anderson's first feature since her concert film in 1986 is a visual essay and meditation on love and loss.Using a collage of fragments for which Anderson is director, producer, animator of her drawings and composer and performer of the music, she weaves very personal stories, commenting on life in New York after 9/11 and on the Buddhist philosophy on the journey we take after we die.Much of the film is centred on Lolabelle, a rat terrier clearly adored by Anderson, who died in 2011. There's a story early in the film of getting out of the city after 9/11 for a nature walk with Lolabelle, only for the two to become the target of a hawk checking whether the dog is small enough to be prey.Anderson uses the story and the shots of surveillance cameras observing the roads to create a comparison between the hawks, the destruction of the planes flying into the twin towers and the use of drones. All dangers from the sky.In what is literally a very morbid film, there are also references to Anderson's mother's death, and the near-death of two of her brothers when the ice proved too thin on a Midwest lake. And the film is dedicated to Anderson's recently deceased husband, Lou Reed, who is heard performing Turning Time Around over the final images.For all this, Heart of a Dog is a celebration in which Anderson encourages people to accept moments big and small, predictable and unexpected. Happily, the film doesn't come to any hard-and-fast conclusions, but merely points out that we may be looking at love and loss in the wrong way.    More >


Billy Hart Quartet

Billy Hart Quartet

The 75 year-old percussionist Billy Hart plays his own compositions with today’s jazz heroes, saxophone player Mark Turner (Fly), pianist Ethan Iverson (The Bad Plus) en double bassist Ben Street.Since 2003 the quartet has been performing in New York every year, and their second album on the ECM label, One Is the Other, is a triumph.Bimhuis, Amsterdam, May 7.www.bimhuis.nl   More >


Residentie Orchestra

Residentie Orchestra

Boris Giltburg is the soloist for Tchaikovsky's piano concerto nr 1. Also on the programme is the same composer's symphony nr 6, the Pathetique. Lawrence Foster (photo) conducts.Zuiderstrandtheater, The Hague, May 6 and 8 (matinee).www.residentieorkest.nl   More >


BMX Supercross

BMX Supercross

The third round of the 2016 UCI BMX Supercross World Cup takes place in Papendal, the favourite venue of this event for many riders. The track has been modified from the end of the second straight onwards to provide new challenges.Papendal comes ahead of races in the United States and Colombia.Olympic Training Center, Papendal, Arnhem, May 7 and 8.www.bmxholland.com  More >


Hieronymus Bosch: Visions of Genius

Hieronymus Bosch: Visions of Genius

The exhibition is sold out but the museum says there may well be some returns because people have booked so far in advance. It is therefore worth keeping an eye on the website.This exhibition to mark the 500th year since the death of Hieronymus Bosch (circa 1450-1516) is perhaps one of the most unique and important art events of the past century, bringing together as it does almost all Bosch's greatest works from galleries including the Accademia in Venice, the Prada in Madrid and the Metropolitan in New York.As well as masterpieces such as The Haywain and The Last Judgement there is also the chance to see two parts of one panel reunited. The Ship of Fools, which is about two-thirds of its original length, is on loan from the Louvre in Paris. The bottom third of the panel, entitled Allegory of Gluttony, is on loan from the Yale University Art Gallery. These two pieces have been brought together in this exhibition for the first time in something like two centuries.Also on display is The Temptation of St Anthony (photo), recently discovered in storage at the Nelson-Atkins Museum of Art in Kansas City, Missouri, which acquired it in the 1930s. The painting, which shows the saint gathering water in a jug as he leans on a staff in what was probably part of a larger panel, was initially believed to be the work of one of the many students who flocked to Bosch’s workshop in ’s-Hertogenbosch (Den Bosch). However, an international team which carried out a five-year research project using sophisticated infrared technology, has now determined that the painting is by the master himself.Bosch, who took his name from his home town of Den Bosch where the exhibition is being held, was a man of immense imagination and his paintings and drawings are full of fantastic imagery showing a deep insight into people's desires and fears.Noordbrabants Museum, Den Bosch, February 13 until May 8.Photo credit: Rik Klein Gotink/Image Processing by Robert G Erdmann for the Bosch Research and Conservation Project.www.hnbm.nl   More >


UFC Fight Night

UFC Fight Night

The UFC Fight Night, which is so popular in America, arrives in the Netherlands for one night. It features mixed martial arts fighters in several fights, all of which take place inside the Octagon.Ahoy, Rotterdam, May 8.Tickets on sale: March 24.www.ufc.com   More >


Meissen Porcelain

Meissen Porcelain

Ceramics expert Anne Haworth talks about the history of Meissen porcelain, also known as the 'white gold' of Saxony.The first high-quality porcelain to be manufactured outside the Orient, it appeared in 1710 when Augustus the Strong and Johan Friedrich Böttger overcame financial and technical problems to create this new type of porcelain. Later craftsmen made superb tableware, models of animals and delightful small scale figures.Decorative and Fine Arts Society, The Hague, May 10.www.dfas.nl   More >


Towards a Pan-European Identity: A German or an Anglo-American Europe

Towards a Pan-European Identity: A German or an Anglo-American Europe

'Germany - but where is it located?' the writer Friedrich Schiller asked more than 200 years ago.In the Schuman Lecture 2016, Brendan Simms, Professor in the History of European International Relations, Department of Politics and International Studies, Cambridge University, takes Schiller's words as the point of departure for a series of reflections on how European and German identity have developed in tandem, resulting in a current European identity largely based on the diffusion rather than the concentration of power.This contrasts with the British model, which transcended national differences and created a new identity to enable the Union to “punch above its weight” in the world.We Europeans find ourselves in a similar situation to the Germans of Schiller's time, having seized the imaginations of many, but secured the political loyalty of few.Simms concludes by suggesting that the answer to Europe's predicament is to step out of our comfort zone of the imagination and to complete the work of political unification in the real world, so necessary to the establishment of a common identity on our continent.Tongersestraat 53, Maastricht, May 10.www.sg.unimaas.nl    More >


Banff Mountain Film Festival Tour

Banff Mountain Film Festival Tour

Each year the small Canadian town of Banff plays host to renowned photographers, adventures and film-makers from around the world who bring stories of profound journeys, unexpected adventures and ground-breaking expeditions.A selection of the best films from the latest festival is now on tour in the Netherlands. They include films about climbing in Patagonia, kayaking over Niagra Falls and river surfing in Montana.Theater Zuidplein, Rotterdam, May 2; JT, Eindhoven, May 3; Kinepolis, Enschede, May 6; Omni Centrum, The Hague, May 7; Podium Mozaïek, Amsterdam, May 8; JT, Deventer, May 9; ZIMIHC Theater, Utrecht, May 10.www.banff-tour.nl  More >


Materials Fair

Materials Fair

Around 170 stands display the latest patterns and colours in a wide variety of different materials ranging from leather to lace. You can use them for dress-making, curtains, linings, re-covering furniture and hobbies. There are also accessories ranging from scissors to sewing machines and demonstrations.Brabanthallen, Den Bosch, April 29; Markt, Gouda, May 11.www.stoffenspektakel.nl  More >


Rod Stewart

Rod Stewart

Rod Stewart sings a wide selection of his hits, including You Wear It Well, Maggie May, Da Ya Think I'm Sexy, Baby Jane, The First Cut Is the Deepest, I Don't Want to Talk About It, Tonight's The Night en Sailling.Ziggo Dome, Amsterdam, May 14.www.ziggodome.nl   More >


Berlage: Godfather of Dutch Design

Berlage: Godfather of Dutch Design

This design exhibition showcases authentic pieces of furniture by Hendrik Petrus Berlage (1856-1934) who designed the location for the exhibition, the former stock exchange, generally considered the starting point of modern Dutch architecture.There is also contemporary design by 20 young Dutch designers which illustrates his continuing influence.Beurs van Berlage, Amsterdam until May 15.www.beursvanberlage.com   More >


Netherlands Bach Society

Netherlands Bach Society

A selection of motets by JS Bach, considered a high point in the genre even though they were becoming less popular in his time. The programme also includes motets from the 17th century when they were more popular, by composers such as Schütz, Homilius and Schein.Onze Lieve Vrouwebasiliek, Maastricht, May 10; De Doelen, Rotterdam, May 11; Jacobkerk, Utrecht, May 12; Muziekgebouw, Amsterdam, May 13; Grote Kerk, Naarden, May 14; Grote Kerk, Haarlem, May 15 (matinee).www.bachvereniging.nl  More >


Luminate Dance Festival

Luminate Dance Festival

A brand new indoor dance party with all the most up-to-date club beats. Among those taking part are Dirtcaps (photo), Gregor Salto, Vato Gonzalez and Justin Prime.Ahoy, Rotterdam, May 15, from 1pmwww.luminatefestival.nl   More >


Karel Appel: A Retrospective

Karel Appel: A Retrospective

Karel Appel (1921-2006) is perhaps the most renowned Dutch artist of the latter half of the twentieth century. This major retrospective marks the tenth anniversary of his death.The 67 paintings, 12 sculptures and more than 60 drawings in the exhibition demonstrate that Karel Appel was more than just a member of the Cobra movement. The show also revisits Appel’s early interest in Outsider Art, his wide-ranging stylistic experiments, and his highly individual – sometimes almost abstract – interpretation of traditional genres like the nude, the portrait and the urban or rural landscape.This exhibition is a pivotal part of a wider international reappraisal of Karel Appel’s work, which will also include exhibitions in Paris, London and Washington.Gemeentemuseum, The Hague until May 16.www.gemeentemuseum.nl    More >


Rembrandt’s Naked Truth

Rembrandt’s Naked Truth

The exhibition is based on new research which provides an insight into how nude models were drawn in the Golden Age. It is the first time an exhibition has focused on the uncompromising way Rembrandt drew his nudes.In the 17th century, Rembrandt and his pupils joined in the new trend of life drawing, but his approach differed from that of his contemporaries. Rembrandt presented reality, refusing to conform to the accepted ideal of beauty, a stance that brought him severe criticism.Rembrandt’s Naked Truth features more than 50 paintings, drawings, sketches and books from European and American public and private collections, along with a selection of Rembrandt’s etchings from the Rembrandt House Museum’s own collection. The drawn nude studies, such as Seated Nude from the Art Institute in Chicago, are extremely rare.Rembrandt House Museum, Amsterdam until May 16.www.rembrandthuis.nl   More >


Catwalk: Fashion in the Rijksmuseum

Catwalk: Fashion in the Rijksmuseum

For the first time the Rijksmuseum presents a large selection of its diverse fashion collection in an exhibition designed by world-renowned Dutch photographer Erwin Olaf. It begins in the 17th century with garments worn by members of the Frisian branch of the house of Nassau in the Golden Age, continues with vibrantly coloured French silk gowns and luxurious velvet gentlemen’s suits of the 18th century and classically-inspired Empire dresses and bustles of the Fin de Siècle, and culminates in 20th century French haute couture by Dior and Yves Saint Laurent.Rijksmuseum, Amsterdam until May 16.www.rijksmuseum.nl   More >


Toneelgroep Amsterdam

Toneelgroep Amsterdam

The largest repertory theatre company of the Netherlands presents some of its productions with English surtitles on Thursday evenings.The stage adaptation of Jonathan Littell's novel The Kindly Ones (photo) from 2006 which tells of the persecution of the Jews during World War II from the point of view of the bureaucratic SD officer Max Aue. The actors include Aus Greidanus Jr, Hans Kesting and Bart Slegers. The director is Guy Cassiers.Stadsschouwburg, Amsterdam, May 19 and 26.The Other Voice is a monologue written by actor and poet Ramsey Nasr to complement Jean Cocteau's The Human Voice, played recently by Halina Reijn. Nasr wanted to know who is on the other end of the telephone and what does he say. He plays the role himself, directed by Ivo van Hove.Stadsschouwburg, Amsterdam, May 12 and 19.www.tga.nl   More >


Royal Concertgebouw Orchestra

Royal Concertgebouw Orchestra

Beethoven's piano concerto nr 1 with soloist Radu Lupu (photo), Richard Rijnvos' Union Square Dance and Schumann's symphony nr 1. The conductor is Gustavo Gimeno.Concertgebouw, Amsterdam, May 6 and 8 (matinee).Tchaikovsky's overture Romeo and Juliette and the letter scene from Eugene Onegin, and Rachmaninov's Symphonic Dances and the lieder Zdes' khorosho. The soloist is the soprano Kristine Opolais. Semyon Bychkov conducts.Concertgebouw, Amsterdam, May 11 and 12.Valery Gergiev conducts Beethoven's violin concerto with soloist Nikolai Snaider and Prokofiev's symphony nr 6.Concertgebouw, Amsterdam, May 19 and 20.www.concertgebouworkest.nl    More >


Rotterdam Philharmonic

Rotterdam Philharmonic

Edo de Waart (photo) conducts Copland's Appalachian Spring, Gershwin's An American in Paris and Strauss' first horn concerto with soloist Martin van de Merwe.De Doelen, Rotterdam, May 19 and 20.www.rotterdamphilharmonisch.nl   More >


Introdans

Introdans

Absolute America features four American dance creators, composers and designers, each with a completely individual style, from punk to acrobatically muscled. The choreographers are Karole Armitage with the early work GoGo Ballerina (1988)  performed in the Netherlands for the first time, two of the most famous figureheads of American modern dance Jennifer Muller and Lucinda Childs, and Robert Battle, director of the Alvin Ailey American Dance Theatre in New York.The music comes from great names such as Jimi Hendrix and Philip Glass and the stage sets from artists such as Jeff Koons and Sol LeWitt.Stadsschouwburg, Amsterdam, April 25; Theater aan het Vrijthof, Maastricht, May 3; Stadsschouwburg, Nijmegen, May 7; Theater Orpheus, Apeldoorn, May 21.www.introdans.nl   More >


Ashton Brothers

Ashton Brothers

The multi-talented Ashton Brothers perform their new show, Enfants Terribles which combines clowning, acrobatics, slapstick, magic, playing a range of instruments, singing and dancing to surprising and very funny affect. Their inspiration comes from variety and circus and results in a superior sort of clowning.De Meervaart, Amsterdam, April 28; Stadsschouwburg, Groningen, May 6 and 7; De Veste, Delft, May 13 and 14; Chassé Theater, Breda, May 20 and 21.Tickets: www.ntk.nl       More >


5 Seconds of Summer

5 Seconds of Summer

The four boys who make up Australian pop punk band 5SOS, which came to fame first via YouTube and later as support to One Direction, are on their first international tour. Expect songs from their second studio album, Sounds Good Feels Good.Ziggo Dome, Amsterdam, May 21 and 22.www.ziggodome.nl   More >


Breitner: Girl in Kimono

Breitner: Girl in Kimono

For the first time, all the paintings of a girl in a kimono by Dutch artist George Hendrik Breitner (1857-1923) are being displayed together.Based on new research, the exhibition displays for the first time the full series of 14 paintings, for most of which the young Geesje Kwak posed. They include a hitherto unknown Girl in a Red Kimono from a private collection.As well as the paintings, the exhibition also includes drawings, sketches and photographs used by the artist in the preparation of his paintings.Rijksmuseum, Amsterdam until May 22.www.rijksmuseum.nl  More >


City Food & Film Festival

City Food & Film Festival

Five days of films, lectures, workshops and tastings featuring food and drink. As well as a full programme of short and full-length films and documentaries, there are talks on subjects ranging from the importance of eating or not eating meat and sugar to the problems of our current food system.Among the films on the programme are That Sugar Film, It All Starts With Beer and Burnt.Verkadefabriek, Amsterdam, May 18 to 22.www.verkadefabriek.nl   More >


Grigory Sokolov

Grigory Sokolov

Grigory Sokolov, considered the world's finest classical pianist, returns to Amsterdam to play nocturnes and sonatas by Chopin and Schumann.Concertgebouw, Amsterdam, May 10.www.meesterpianisten.nl   More >


FitExpo

FitExpo

This event covers fitness, martial arts and a healthy and sporty life, with stands offering advice on everything from oils and cosmetics to wellness centres and fitness equipment.Also part of the fair are the Benelux body building championship and the Dutch karate championship.Ahoy, Rotterdam, May 20 to 22.www.ahoy.nl   More >


Close-Up: A New Generation of Film and Video Artists in the Netherlands

Close-Up: A New Generation of Film and Video Artists in the Netherlands

This group exhibition features numerous recent film and video works and spatial installations by a new generation of filmmakers and artists in the Netherlands, who are breaking down the barriers between film, video and visual art.The participating artists are Melanie Bonajo, Felix Burger, Helen Dowling, Zachary Formwalt, Mariska de Groot, Hamza Halloubi, Cristóbal León & Joaquín Cociña, Amos Mulder, Florian & Michael Quistrebert, Janis Rafa, belit sağ, Joris Strijbos & Matthijs Munnik, Lichun Tseng and David Verbeek.Eye, Amsterdam until May 22.www.eyefilm.nl   More >


Netherlands Chamber Choir

Netherlands Chamber Choir

Conductor-in-chief Peter Dijkstra (photo) chooses a selection from the French choir repertoire for his first a-cappella programme. Among his choices are the mass Messe pour double choeur by Frank Martin and Messiaen's Cinq rechants.Musis Sacrum, Arnhem, April 28; Grote Kerk, Leeuwarden, April 29; Muziekgebouw, Amsterdam, April 30.Shakespeare's The Tempest gets a new treatment by composer Robert Zuidam, with text by Spinvis, and narration and solo voice by Hadewych Minis. Also on the programme are Ralph Vaughan Williams' Three Shakespeare Songs and Frank Martin's Songs of Ariel. The conductor is Manoj Kamps.Chassé Theater, Breda, May 14; Stadsschouwburg, Heerlen, May 17; TivoliVredenburg, Utrecht, May 19; De Oosterpoort, Groningen, May 21; Concertgebouw, Amsterdam, May 24; Muziekgebouw, Eindhoven, May 25.www.nederlandskamerkoor.nl   More >


SPRING Utrecht

SPRING Utrecht

This international performing arts festival provides 10 days of dance and theatre. It opens with 6: The Square by the German-Dutch choreographer Nicole Beutler. It is the second part of her Bauhaus trilogy and brings together dance, fashion, visual art and electronic music in a plea for freedom.There are also masterclasses and workshops.Stadsschouwburg and other venues, Utrecht, May 19 to 28.www.springutrecht.nl   More >


National Ballet

National Ballet

The National Ballet is joined for the first time by the National Opera for this production of Hector Berlioz's Romeo and Juliette. The director and choreographer is Sasha Waltz. Berlioz referred to the singing roles as the vocal types alto, tenor and bass, as they function primarily as narrators. The chorus plays a prominent role, sometimes as a commentator and sometimes as the two rival families.Muziektheater, Amsterdam, April 25, 28 and May 1 (matinee).Four gems from the repertoire of the famous Dutch choreographer Hans van Manen. Metaforen, an early work from 1965, was controversial at the time being a pas de deux for two men. Twilight from 1972 has a male and a female dancer, with the woman dancing in high heels. The 1999 Two Gold Variations was created for the Nederlands Dans Theater and this is the first time the National Ballet has danced it. The final piece is the timeless Adagio Hammerklavier for three couples from 1973.Zuiderstrandtheater, The Hague, April 18; Stadsschouwburg, Utrecht, April 19; Parktheater, Eindhoven, April 22; Schouwburg, Rotterdam, April 23.The programme Ballet Bubbles features 12 young talents from the junior company who dance extracts from the classical repertoire and works by legendary company choreographers. There are also two brand new pieces: one by Ernst Meisner, the other by Charlotte Edmonds of the London Royal Ballet.Stadsschouwburg, Amsterdam, May 12; Stadsschouwburg, Groningen, May 17; Schouwburg, Tilburg, May 22 (matinee); Parktheater, Eindhoven, May 25; Korzo Theater, The Hague, May 28.www,operaballet.nl     More >


Celt Festival

Celt Festival

The Keltfest or Celtic Festival takes place in the natural park the Biesbosch near Dordrecht. Its main attraction are the many re-enactment camps which can be visited. These range from the Saxons of the 8th century and the Vikings to the Celts of the Netherlands between 800 and 500 BC and a Roman army encampment.At all of them there are demonstrations of the daily life of the time, including working leather and iron, making music and dancing, basket weaving, outdoor cooking, net knotting and making clothing.In addition, there is a huge market encompassing a smithy, jewellery, kilts, piercings, leather products and tattoos.Biesbosch, Dordrecht, May 28 and 29.www.keltfest.nl   More >


Spanish Masters from the Hermitage

Spanish Masters from the Hermitage

This exhibition of Spanish masters from the Hermitage includes more than 60 paintings and a rich collection of graphic works and applied arts pieces. It is the first time the Netherlands has hosted such a comprehensive survey of Spanish art.Works by El Greco, Velázquez, Murillo and Goya represent the golden age of Spanish art of the late 16th century and 17th century. Works by their pupils and later painters such as Picasso show how the influence of the period continued into modern times.Hermitage, Amsterdam until May 29.www.hermitage.nl      More >


One Man, Two Guvnors

One Man, Two Guvnors

Richard Bean's up-dated version of Goldoni's comic classic was a huge hit for the National Theatre and James Corden in the central role in London and on Broadway. That central role is Francis, who finds himself shuttling between two bosses: Rachel who is disguised as her dead gangland twin, and posh twit Stanley who is both Rachel's lover and Stanley's killer.Set in Brighton in 1963, the Queen's English Theatre Company’s production has all the romance, food and comic misunderstandings that make this one of the funniest of farces.Amsterdams Theaterhuis, Amsterdam, May 13 to 29.www.Qetc.nl    More >


Ugo Rondinone: Vocabulary of Solitude

Ugo Rondinone: Vocabulary of Solitude

Clowns are at the heart of this first solo exhibition in the Netherlands by the Swiss artist Ugo Rondinone (1964). There are 45 of these life-size and highly realistic clowns with titles such as breathe, remember, feel and yawn, and representing 24 hours in the life of an individual. It is the first time these clown sculptures have been exhibited.The whole exhibition is an installation, and is a retrospective of his works inspired by the colour spectrum. As well as the clowns, there are clocks, candles, shoes, windows, light bulbs and rainbows.Museum Boijmans Van Beuningen, Rotterdam until May 29.www.boijmans.nl  More >


Jan Toorop

Jan Toorop

Jan Toorop (1858–1928) ranks alongside Van Gogh and Mondrian as one of the most important Dutch artists of the period around 1900. Mainly associated with Art Nouveau, this exhibition of around 150 works illustrates the many other styles in which Toorop worked.. He also produced Neo-Impressionist, Pointillist and Symbolist paintings and his innovations in painting included the use of flat areas of colour.Gemeentemuseum, The Hague until May 29.www.gemeentemuseum.nl   More >


Opera Days

Opera Days

The annual opera festival takes in existing and new works together with activities such as a special walk taking in three operas in surprising locations around Rotterdam.The festival opens with the Slovenian vocal theatre company Carmina Slovenica, an all female choir. They perform Toxic Psalms which denounces acts of cruelty conducted for religious reasons.Schouwburg and other venues, Rotterdam, May 20 to 29.www.operadagenrotterdam.nl   More >


Excellent Lifestyle Fair

Excellent Lifestyle Fair

Hundreds of stands full of luxury goods ranging from items for the home and garden to gadgets, cars, yachts and jewellery. There are also fashion shows and an auction.There is also information on investment opportunities on Cyprus and the Cape Verde islands, and on second homes.MECC, Maastricht, May 26 to 29.www.excellentmaastricht.nl     More >


National Opera

National Opera

The National Opera is joined for the first time by the National Ballet for this production of Hector Berlioz's Romeo and Juliette. The director and choreographer is Sasha Waltz. Berlioz referred to the singing roles as the vocal types alto, tenor and bass, as they function primarily as narrators. The chorus plays a prominent role, sometimes as a commentator and sometimes as the two rival families.Muziektheater, Amsterdam, April 25, 28 and May 1 (matinee).Mozart's Don Giovanni has it all: gorgeous music plus sex, violence, humour and tension. This production is directed by Claus Guth with Christopher Maltman in the title role. The conductor is Marc Albrecht.Muziektheater, Amsterdam, May 7, 10, 15 (matinee), 18, 21, 24, 26 and 29 (matinee).www.operaballet.nl    More >


Jimmy Carr

Jimmy Carr

Jimmy Carr is back in the Netherlands after an absence of two years with his latest show, Funny Business.The English comedian's humour is an acquired taste as he takes aim at everyone, from the disabled and religious believers to nurses.Carr is what's known as 'edgy', which in this case means he upsets many people. Whether or not he is actually funny is a matter of opinion.Theater Carré, Amsterdam, May 29.www.theatercarre.nl   More >


Hair! Human Hair in Fashion and Art

Hair! Human Hair in Fashion and Art

Human hair is incorporated into jewellery and fashion, is used for artworks and installations, and is found in a diversity of forms – especially on the body itself. Hair is an intriguing and controversial subject, particularly since it is – literally – so close to humankind.This major exhibition has been conceived on the basis of cultural-historical research,  focusing on developments in fashion and the visual arts. It includes designs by boundary-breaking, international fashion designers and artists who have been inspired by this material, such as Zhu Tian and the hairy bumps called Babe.Other artists taking part include the renowned international artists Charlie Le Mindu, Julien d’Ys, Christiaan Houtenbos, Zoran Todorovic, Bob Recine and Silvia B.Centraal Museum, Utrecht until May 29.www.centraalmuseum.nl    More >


Netherlands Philharmonic

Netherlands Philharmonic

The music composed by Nobuo Uematsu and Masashi Hamauzu for the video game series Final Fantasy has been arranged into a symphony  which is being performed in the Netherlands for the first time. The conductor is Eckehard Stier and the soloist is pianist Katharina Treutler.Concertgebouw, Amsterdam, May 7.Hartmut Haenchen conducts Handel's Music for the Royal Fireworks and Shostakovich's symphony nr 8.Concertgebouw, Amsterdam, May 21, 22 (matinee) and 24.Violinist and leader of the Netherlands Chamber Orchestra joins the Philharmonic as the soloist for Saint-Saëns' Introduction & Rondo Capriccioso and Ravel's Tzigane. Also on the programme are Bizet's L'Arlésienne suites 1 and 2. The conductor is Marc Albrecht.Concertgebouw, Amsterdam, May 28 and 30.www.orkest.nl      More >


Scapino Ballet

Rollercoaster was previously only seen in Scapino's home city of Rotterdam, but is now on tour. It consists of short pieces which follow each other without pause by several choreographers. Among those contributing work are Ed Wubbe, Itamar Serussi and Marcos Morau.Stadsschouwburg, Groningen, April 26; Theater aan den Parade, Den Bosch, April 29; Parktheater, Eindhoven, May 4; Schouwburg, Leiden, May 10; De Flint, Amersfoort, May 13; Stadsschouwburg, Haarlem, May 18; Schouwburg, Heerlen, May 26; Theater aan het Vrijfhof, Maastricht, May 31.www.scapinoballet.nl   More >


Opera Zuid

Opera Zuid

This production of Puccini's La Bohème has Héloïse Koempgen-Bramy as the tragic Mimi and Adriano Graziani as her great love Rodolfo. The director is Waut Koeken and the conductor Karel Deseure.Parktheater, Eindhoven, May 19 and 21; Schouwburg, Tilburg, May 26; De Harmonie, Leeuwarden, May 28; Stadsschouwburg, Heerlen, May 31.www.operazuid.nl   More >


Grayson Perry: Hold Your Beliefs Lightly

Grayson Perry: Hold Your Beliefs Lightly

A major solo exhibition by the British artist Grayson Perry (1960) who uses a huge variety of techniques and materials in his work which tapestries, ceramics, cast iron sculptures, films, dresses and even a complete house. Recurring themes in the work of this Turner Prize-winning artist are religion and mythology, identity and gender, art and art world, class and consumerism and conflict and war.Among the objects on display are The Walthamstow Tapestry, the monumental four-part etching A map of days and several of his ceramic pots.Bonnefanten Museum, Maastricht until June 5.www.bonnefanten.nl  More >


Street Couture

Street Couture

Street couture is all about mixing high-end fashion with street fashion. The exhibition illustrates this by showcasing couture classics, including designs by Chanel, Louis Vuitton, Prada, Dior and Alexander McQueen, which have been matched with street style.Japanese Shibuya girls are shown wearing manga, lolita and gothic clothing combined with a classic Louis Vuitton bag. American hip-hop and sports outfits are matched with Chanel.Museum of Bags and Purses, Amsterdam until June 5.www.tassenmuseum.nl   More >


Nederlands Dans Theater

Nederlands Dans Theater

Separate Ways  is a programme consisting entirely of new pieces by Hofesh Shechter and Sol León and Paul Lightfoot. The British-Israeli Shechter is regarded as one of Britain's most acclaimed choreographers. León and Lightfoot will show their first new creation since their anniversary performance for 25 Years Leon & Lightfoot for NDT 2 in the fall of 2014.Zuiderstrandtheater, The Hague, April 28, 29 and 30; Schouwburg, Arnhem, May 6; Muziektheater, Amsterdam, May 11, 12, 13 and 14; Zuiderstrandtheater, The Hague, May 18, 19, 20 and 21; Theater aan de Parade, Den Bosch, May 25; Stadsschouwburg, Tilburg, May 28; Parktheater, Eindhoven, May 31; Stadsschouwburg, Groningen, June 4; Stadsschouwburg, Utrecht, June 7.www.ndt.nl  More >


Philippe Halsman: Astonish Me!

A retrospective of the work of Philippe Halsman (1906 -1979), one of the greatest photographers of the 20th century. Halsman is well-known for his portraits of famous people and for his collaboration with Salvador Dalí and Alfred Hitchcock.Over a short period of time, he became an admired portrait artist, the subjects in front of his lens including numerous famous names such as Audrey Hepburn, Marilyn Monroe, Albert Einstein and Winston Churchill.He also developed the phenomenon of ’jumpology photography’, which included photos of film stars and politicians captured in mid-jump, the aim of which was to give his portraits a more spontaneous character.Over three hundred never-before exhibited works, including contact prints, vintage prints and original photo-montages, illustrate Halsman's constant search for photographic possibilities and impossibilities.Kunsthal, Rotterdam, February 27 until June 12.www.kunsthal.nl   More >


PinkPop

PinkPop

The annual outdoor pop festival presents a line-up of international artists on several stages. The first headliners to be announced were the Red Hot Chili Peppers and Rammstein. Closing the event is Paul McCartney, who is making his first appearance at a Dutch festival.'I love a festival audience and we plan to close Pinkpop with a massive party,' McCartney says on the Pinkpop website.In the meantime, other acts have been confirmed, including Lionel Richie, Skunk Anasie, James Bay, Years and Years and The Common Linnets.Landgraf, Heerlen, June 10, 11 and 12.Tickets on sale: February 20.www.ticketmaster.nl  More >


Judith and Edith

Judith and Edith

Gustav Klimt’s gloriously erotic painting Judith I is on show at the Gemeentemuseum, on loan from Vienna’s Belvedere museum. It is one of the best-known examples of Klimt’s Golden Phase, when he integrated genuine gold leaf into his paintings.The exhibition presents Judith in combination with Egon Schiele’s Portrait of Edith, a top work in the collection of the Gemeentemuseum. Schiele depicts his wife as a model of chastity.Director Benno Tempel says: 'The works present an intriguing contrast, but that is not the only reason for exhibiting them together. The oeuvres of Klimt and Schiele are linked both thematically and stylistically. Moreover, both artists were members of the avant-garde Vienna Secession group and both of them regularly shocked society by showing explicitly erotic paintings and drawings.'Gemeentemuseum, The Hague until June 19.www.gemeentemuseum.nl   More >


Easy Virtue: Prostitution in French Art

Easy Virtue: Prostitution in French Art

This exhibition showing prostitution through the eyes of 19th century artists such as Vincent van Gogh, Edgar Degas, Henri de Toulouse-Lautrec and Pablo Picasso is a coproduction with Musée D'Orsay in Paris. The artists of the period enthusiastically depicted prostitution as an aspect of modern life in the city of Paris, and they painted women soliciting on the boulevards, wealthy courtesans in their salons and the prematurely aged prostitutes in brothels.The paintings and prints in the exhibition are displayed in rooms specially painted various shades of red and containing objects such as a bed from one of the many Parisian brothels and a box of 19th century condoms.There is also a selection of early pornographic photos in sepia tints and a film salon which only aged 18 or older are allowed to enter.Among the paintings on show are the wonderful The Plum by Manet from 1879 and The Absinthe Drinker by Degas from 1876. There are also paintings by later artists who were less concerned with prostitution but used the subject for the depiction of naked women - artists such as Picasso, Munch, Kupka and Kees van Dongen.Van Gogh Museum, Amsterdam until June 19.www.vangoghmuseum.nl  More >


Oerol Festival

Oerol Festival

Every June, the island of Terschelling in the Wadden Sea is transformed for ten days into a unique natural stage for theatre, dance, street theatre, art and music.The shows are created or adapted specially for the exceptional locations where they are performed.From theatre spectacle to mime, from intimate musical theatre to hilarious circus shows, from Westerns to interactive installations, it all takes place in the dunes, on the beaches, in the woods, on the dikes, in sheds and barns and on the streets.Among those performing are Circus Ronaldo, Orkater, Ro Theater, Broken Brass Ensemble, Typhoon and Spinvis.Terschelling, June 10 to 19.www.oerol.nl  More >


Holland Festival

Holland Festival

This annual cultural festival offers a broad scope of international performing arts, and features both established names and new talent. It continues to innovate, exploring new forms of theatre and new types of venue, such as staging performances in public spaces.Already scheduled for this edition are The Cure (photo) and The Corridor, two chamber operas created by Harrison Birtwistle and David Harsent, each of which riffs on death and the restoration of youth. They are performed by soprano Elizabeth Atherton and tenor Mark Padmore with the London Sinfonietta.Various locations, Amsterdam, June 4 to 26.www.hollandfestival.nl   More >


The 20th Century – Mirroring Time in Ceramics

The 20th Century – Mirroring Time in Ceramics

An exhibition telling the story of the previous century in a new way, showing how ceramics can be regarded as the cultural memory of the 20th century.It seems it was no coincidence that ceramists started to use 'crater glazes' at the advent of the Space Age. In the same way, a huge quantity of ceramics with holiday scenes started appearing in the 1960s as the holiday culture emerged.The exhibition features approximately 400 ceramic objects, ranging from avant-garde to mass-produced. Many pieces have not been seen for years, because they did not fit any art historical exhibitions.The ceramic objects are complemented by objects from other fine and applied art disciplines, and include furniture, paintings, a jukebox and even an original caravan from 1960. There are also film footage and historical photographs, which locate the ceramic objects in time.Princessehof Ceramic Museum, Leeuwarden until July 3 2016.www.princessehof.nl   More >


Neil Young

Neil Young

Legendary rocker Neil Young brings his Rebel Content tour to the Netherlands. With him is the band Promise of the Real, which includes Willie Nelson's sons Lukas and Micah. The programme includes classic hits, lesser known songs and numbers from the recent album, The Monsanto Years.Ziggo Dome, Amsterdam, July 9.www.ziggodome.nl   More >


North Sea Jazz Festival

North Sea Jazz Festival

One of the world's foremost jazz festivals also features music ranging from blues to salsa with a line-up of international singers and instrumentalists.One of the highlights is saxophonist Kamasi Washington who plays numbers from his triple album The Epic with the strings from the Metropole Orchestra and a choir.Others appearing during the festival are guitarist Pay Metheny with bass player Ron Carter, Anthony Hamilton, Joe Bonamassa and Cécile McLorin Salvant, the jazz vocalist who won a Grammy in February for best vocal album.Ahoy, Rotterdam, July 8, 9 and 10.www.northseajazz.com  More >


World Press Photo

World Press Photo

This year's winning World Press Photo is the Australian photographer Warren Richardson's image of a baby being handed through the barbed wire along the border between Hungary and Serbia.It takes pride of place in the exhibition of other winners in various categories such as images of migrants wrapped in foil against the cold as they approach the Italian coast in a tiny boat, a married couple who get chemotherapy together hugging, a wrestling tournament in Sierra Leone and a young IS fighter being treated for burns in a Syrian hospital.Nieuwe Kerk, Amsterdam until July 10.www.worldpressphoto.org  More >


Gainsborough In His Own Words

Gainsborough In His Own Words

Thomas Gainsborough (1727-1788) was the dominant British portraitist of the second half of the 18th century, although he preferred painting landscapes. This first exhibition of his work in the Netherlands consists of around 30 paintings and 30 watercolours, on loan from a variety of international museums and collections.In addition, there are a number of the letters on display which Gainsborough wrote to family, friends and patrons, and which provide an intriguing look at the personality of the man.Rijksmuseum Twente, Enschede until July 24.www.rijksmuseumtwente.nl   More >


Delft Chamber Music Festival

Delft Chamber Music Festival

Each year some of the world's best musicians gather in Delft to play chamber music in unusual combinations. The programme for this 20th edition will be on the website at the beginning of April.Museum Het Prinsenhof, Delft, July 28 to August 7.www.delftmusicfestival.nl   More >


Cirque Éloize

Cirque Éloize

Canada's Cirque Éloize returns to Amsterdam to reprise the show iD, a fizzing spectacle which mixes circus and urban dance to electric effect. A Chinese pole act has shades of West Side Story, contortion gets an extra edge when it meets break-dancing and a trampowall sequence is exhilarating. There's even inline skating and trial bike tricks.Theater Carré, Amsterdam, July 27 to August 7.www.carre.nl  More >


Royal Photos

Royal Photos

A selection of the photos taken by Vincent Mentzel (1945), formerly in-house photographer of national newspaper NRC. Mentzel photographed the royal family for over thirty years at official functions and during state visits, but also during less formal occasions.The photos date from the 1970s, 1980s and 1990s when access to the royal family was much looser than it is now. Mentzel took a walk with Prince Claus during a visit to Pakistan. In China he went shopping with Princess Juliana's best friend. Such access is unthinkable these days.Paleis Het Loo, Apeldoorn until August 21.www.paleishetloo.nl   More >


Van Gogh Minis

Van Gogh Minis

In this exhibition, 80 contemporary artists offer a personal response to the unique imagery of the painter Vincent van Gogh (1853-1890) by producing a miniature version in the shape of a diorama.The specific limitations and possibilities of a diorama make it an eminently suitable medium with which to study Van Gogh's work. After all, the construction of a diorama hinges on the depth perceived in the image, viewed with just one eye. This relates directly to the principal elements so characteristic of Van Gogh’s work: his use of perspective and colour.Museum of the Image, Breda until August 21.www.moti.com   More >


Living in the Amsterdam School

Living in the Amsterdam School

The architecture of the Amsterdam School is internationally renowned, but this exhibition focuses on the furniture and interiors designed by the architects, sculptors and designers of the Amsterdam School.The interiors contain expressive items of furniture made from unusual wood types, which also feature strong sculptural lines and sculpted details with beautiful, distinctive fastenings or upholstery in rich, dark hues. The upholstery fabrics also bring an extremely colourful palette to the interiors with gorgeous rugs, curtains, wall hangings, lampshades, tablecloths and daybed covers with intricate patterns in bright combinations of orange, purple, red, green, brown and/or black. Ceramics, glass designs, lamps (many with stained glass) do the same.Stedelijk Museum, Amsterdam until August 28.www.stedelijk.nl   More >


Robeco Summer Nights

Robeco Summer Nights

This year's summer series of concerts featuring classical, pop and jazz music includes a complete performance of The Beatles' Magical Mystery Tour by The Analogues, a celebration of the 4th of July by the Jazz Orchestra of the Concertgebouw, and Dukas' The Sorcerer's Apprentice played on the famous Concertgebouw organ by Leo van Doeslaar.The opening concert sees The Kyteman Orchestra join forces with the Radio Philharmonic and the Radio Choir for a jam session.Concertgebouw, Amsterdam, July 1 until August 31.www.robecozomerconcerten.nl   More >


Early Music Festival

Early Music Festival

This year the Early Music Festival, the largest of its kind in the world, takes as its theme La Serenissima. Among those taking part in the packed programme of concerts are L’Arpeggiata, Philippe Jaroussky, Les Musiciens du Louvre, Le Concert Spirituel, Collegium 1704, Vox Luminis, Ensemble Correspondances and Ghislieri Choir & Consort.The full programme will be announced on May 13.TivoliVredenburg and other venues, Utrecht, August 26 to September 4.www.oudemuziek.nl/festival  More >


Hans Klok

Hans Klok

House of Horror is the completely new show from one of the world's greatest illusionists. There are new illusions, with girls disappearing and reappearing at lightning speed, and some top circus acts.And to create the right atmosphere, there are flickering candles, ghosts wandering across the stage and mist rising from beneath the stage.Theater Carré, Amsterdam, August 14 to October 2.www.onlineticketshop.nl       More >