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


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 >


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 >


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 >


Vik Muniz: Verso

Vik Muniz: Verso

An exhibition which reveals not the fronts of world famous paintings but their backs. For this exhibition, celebrated Brazilian artist Vik Muniz has created a total of five new works based on paintings in the Mauritshuis collection to augment his existing Verso series.For Muniz, the back of every painting is unique: the holes, the metal brackets, the labels and all the other markings it acquires tell the story of its past. As the years go by the back of a painting changes. New owners make their mark. The latest processes leave an imprint.Muniz calls these 3D copies of his photos of the back of paintings Versos and the exhibition contains 15 of them, including Picasso’s Les Demoiselles d’Avignon(MoMA, New York), Van Gogh's Starry Night (MoMA), Da Vinci's La Gioconda (Louvre, Paris), and from the Mauritshuis collection Vermeer’s Girl with a Pearl Earring and View of Delft, Carel Fabritius's The Goldfinch and Rembrandt's The Anatomy Lesson of Dr Nicolaes Tulp. Mauritshuis, The Hague until September 4.www.mauritshuis.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 >


Illyria Open-Air Theatre Company

Illyria Open-Air Theatre Company

The British company is noted for performing Shakespeare's plays uncut, in authentic Elizabethan style and outdoors. For this year's visit to the Netherlands they are reprising the play they performed on their first visit in 1992, A Midsummer Night's Dream. Five quick-changing, fast-running actors perform all the roles.Kersouwe Natuurtheater, Heeswijk-Dinther,  August 30;  Raadhuis de Paauw, Wassenaar, September 1 and 2; Schovenhorst Estate, Schovenhorst, September 3. Illyria also performs something for the children. This year it's Roald Dahl's Danny, The Champion of the World, in which Danny must rescue his father from the nasty local landowner Victor Hazell.Raadhuis de Paauw, Wassenaar, September 3 and 4 (matinees).www.theenglishtheatre.nl   More >


Robby Müller – Master of Light

Robby Müller – Master of Light

A large exhibition dedicated to the famous Dutch cinematographer Robby Müller, who has worked with Wim Wenders, Jim Jarmusch, Lars von Trier and Steve McQueen. Müller, who is internationally renowned for his pioneering camerawork and virtuoso lighting effects, has opened up his personal archive for the occasion.Among the memorable film moments from modern classics such as Breaking the Waves, Dancer in the Dark, Dead Man, Down by Law, Barfly, 24 Hour Party People and Paris, Texas are Björk dancing in a factory, Johnny Depp floating seawards in a canoe and Nastassja Kinski wearing a bright-red top.Large video projections highlight the visual ingenuity and emotional complexity of Müller’s images, which also features items from his private archive. Also included are interviews with Wim Wenders, Lars von Trier and Jim Jarmusch, who discuss their collaboration with Müller and select and talk about a number of typical Müller scenes.Eye Film Museum, Amsterdam until September 4.www.eyefilm.nl   More >


Nick Cave

Nick Cave

Nick Cave wanted to make a visual recording of his new album with the Bad Seeds, Skeleton Tree. But director Andrew Dominik developed it into something much deeper by interspersing the songs with interviews with Cave about the inspiration for the album: the tragic death of his 15-year-old son Arthur in July 2015.The black and white, 3D One More Time with Feeling screens in 21 cinemas around the Netherlands one day before the release of the album.Pathé, CineMec and Foroxity cinemas around the country, September 8.www.pathe.nl www.cinemec.nl www.foroxity.nl   More >


Botero: Celebrate Life!

Botero: Celebrate Life!

Retrospective of nearly a hundred colourful paintings, drawings and pastels by Columbian artist Fernando Botero (1932) plus ‘Caballo’, his giant sculpture of a horse. Botero satirises – religion, the rich and powerful, his country’s violent history, and admires: his podgy version of the Arnolfini portrait, a homage to Van Eyck, is something to behold.www.kunsthal.nl until September 11  More >


Vondel Park Festival

Vondel Park Festival

Every summer the Amsterdam Vondelpark Festival hosts a free programme of music, theatre, dance and cabaret at the open air theatre in the middle of the park. set in the beautiful open air theatre, the Vondelpark Openluchttheater, in the middle of the Vondelpark in Amsterdam.Performances take place every weekend afternoon and evening, and feature established and new talent. For about 75% of the performances language is no problem.The Vondelpark Festival begins on Friday evenings with contemporary and modern dance performances. On Saturday afternoon there are theatre performances by and for children, after which Dutch talent takes to the stage for Club Vondel.On Saturday evening there is standup comedy and live music. Sunday morning there are classical performances, ranging from modern and post-modern to contemporary music. Well known Dutch artists take the stage on Sunday afternoon.Vondel Park, Amsterdam, June 5 until September 11.www.whatsupwithamsterdam.com   More >


Olafur Eliasson

Olafur Eliasson

An opportunity to experience Notion Motion, the huge installation by the Danish-Icelandic artist Olafur Eliasson.Inspired by the laws of nature, particularly the reflection of light on water, the installation is made up of three different light projections that explore the interaction between light and water. The impressive installation contains 20,562 litres of water and is made of 800 duckboard elements.It was Eliasson who had visitors lying on the floor of the Turbine Room at Tate Modern in London when his Weather Project was exhibited in 2003.Boijmans van Beuningen, Rotterdam until September 18.www.boijmans.nl     More >


Bill Bailey

Bill Bailey

The British comedian brings his new show, Limboland, to the Netherlands and talks about the gap between how we imagine our life to be and how it really is.He recounts the hilarious saga of a disastrous family trip to Norway to see the Northern Lights. He rails against a world that doesn’t match up to our expectations and contemplates the true nature of happiness.There is also music in the form of Bill's version of the protest song, and a fabulously downbeat version of Happy Birthday.RAI, Amsterdam, September 23; 013, Tilburg, September 24.www.ticketmaster.nl    More >


The 1980s: Today’s Beginnings?

The 1980s: Today’s Beginnings?

This exhibition explores the 1980s from six European perspectives, examining the relevance of this transformative decade to today. It comprises a diverse mix of artworks, music, TV, graphic and archival material, exploring a wide set of socio-political themes through the lens of culture.The project gives space to multiple narratives and voices from different European perspectives, beginning with counter culture in the Netherlands, the Slovenian collective NSK and black art from Great Britain. There are also presentations from the Van Abbe's partners in Istanbul, Barcelona, and Madrid.Van Abbemuseum, Eindhoven until September 25.www.vanabbemuseum.nl   More >


Rembrandt’s Marriage Portraits

Rembrandt’s Marriage Portraits

Earlier this year, two Rembrandt portraits of a newly wed couple were bought jointly by the Netherlands and France.Portrait of Marten Soolmans was acquired by the Dutch state for the Rijksmuseum; Portrait of Oopjen Coppit by the French republic for the Musée du Louvre.Both paintings are on display in Amsterdam for three months, prior to being restored at the Rijksmuseum.Rembrandt painted the marriage portraits of the newly-wed Marten Soolmans and Oopjen Coppit in Amsterdam in 1634, when he was twenty-eight. The portraits, more than two metres high, remained in private hands for almost four centuries.Rijksmuseum, Amsterdam, July 2 until October 2.www.rijksmuseum.nl    More >


Giuseppe Penone

Giuseppe Penone

This summer's sculpture display in the gardens of the Rijksmuseum features the work of the Italian artist Giuseppe Penone (1947).It includes both older and new works, including a bronze tree carrying a solid block of granite between its branches, a tree trunk with water gushing out of it, and images drawn from the artist’s own forehead.Rijksmuseum, Amsterdam until October 2. Entrance is free.www.rijksmuseum.nl   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 >


Boxing

Boxing

Photo: Toussaint KluitersThe Ben Bril Memorial Boxing Gala is a series of fights, including a tag match, between professional international boxers.No boxers have yet been announced but the evening should be particularly memorable as it marks the 10th anniversary of this event.Ben Bril (1912-2003) was a flyweight fighter from Amsterdam who was Dutch champion eight times. In 1928 he represented the Netherlands at the Olympic Games, reaching the quarter finals.Theater Carré, Amsterdam, October 17.www.theatercarre.nl  More >


Curve paintings 1961- 2014

Curve paintings 1961- 2014

Part retrospective, part presentation of later works this exhibition tracks the main influences on the oeuvre of British artist Bridget Riley (1931), who shot to fame with her black and white  ‘op art’ paintings in the Sixties. Over fifty paintings and studies show the recurrence of the wave motif in a career that now spans over fifty years. One of Riley’s main influences was Dutch artist Piet Mondriaan with whom she shares a fascination with abstract geometric painting.   www.gemeentemuseum.nl  until October 23.  More >


Dutch Design Week

Dutch Design Week

The 15th Dutch Design Week has the theme 'The making of' and hosts a whopping 2,500 national and international designers. This year the actual process of manufacturing takes centre stage. 'We are showing that Dutch designers are both critical and enterprising, make a lot themselves but also tackle social issues,' says director Martijn Paulen.Amongst the regular highlights are the Graduation Show at the Design Academy Eindhoven, the presentation of the annual Dutch Design Awards the Dutch Invertuals show and Modebelofte. The Designhuis, Van Abbemuseum, Kazerne, MU, Stimuleringsfonds Creatieve Industrie, Piet Hein Eek, Sectie-C, TAC and Yksi will be holding international exhibitions.The Klokgebouw is hosting  the exhibition It’s Your World, in collaboration with DDW ambassador Bas van Abel (Fairphone), and Mind the Step by Delft, Twente and Eindhoven Universities of Technology.Website  More >


From Floris to Rubens: Master drawings from the Renaissance

From Floris to Rubens: Master drawings from the Renaissance

This exhibition features ninety drawings from artists from the southern and northern Netherlands created during the 16th and beginning of the 17th century. Assembled with great care by a Belgian private collector, these drawings belong to one of the most fascinating and prolific periods in the history of draughtsmanship.The exhibition includes beautiful sketches for prints, paintings, stained glass and tapestries by great masters such as Frans Floris and Peter Paul Rubens as well as the sublime figure studies of Hendrick Goltzius and Cornelis De Vos and detailed landscapes by Pieter Stevens and Adriaen Frans Boudewijns. The majority of the selected drawings have never been shown to the public before.Website  More >


Marvel Universe Live!

Marvel Universe Live!

Around 25 Marvel characters are on stage to enact a battle for the Cosmic Cube which Thor shattered into pieces to stop it falling into the wrong hands.The good guys of the Marvel Universe such as Thor, Iron Man, Captain America and Spider-Man join forces to face down enemies ranging from Loki and Green Goblin to Doctor Octopus and Electro in a show full of stunts and special effects.Ahoy, Rotterdam, November 11 to 13.www.ahoy.nl   More >


Show jumping

Show jumping

Jumping Indoor Maastricht is a three-day event where top international riders compete for a series of prizes in jumping and dressage.There is also a jumping competition for ponies and a Shetland mini-steeple chase.Check the website for news of who is taking part.MECC, Maastricht, November 11 to 13.www.jumpingindoormaastricht.com  More >


Gershwin Gala

Gershwin Gala

An evening of music by George and Ira Gershwin played by the New Romanian Symphony Orchestra conducted by Raymond Janssen and with soloists soprano Janice Dixon, baritone Derrick Lawrence and pianist Antonii Baryshevskyi.They will be performing the Porgy & Bess Suite, Rhapsody in Blue, Girl Crazy and An American in Paris.Concertgebouw, Amsterdam, November 13, 17 and 20; De Doelen, Rotterdam, November 14; De Grote Kerk, Apeldoorn, November 15; Eusebiuskerk, Arnhem, November 18; Martini Plaza, Groningen, November 19.www.tec-entertainment.com    More >


Fra Bartolommeo, the Divine Renaissance

Fra Bartolommeo, the Divine Renaissance

The museum has the largest collection of drawings by 15th century artist Fra Bartolommeo who, with Leonardo da Vinci, Rafael and Michelangelo, was one of the main representatives of the High Renaissance. A hundred of these drawings will be on show, together with a number of important paintings among which two altar pieces that have never been seen outside of Italy. www.boijmans.nl October 15 – January 15  More >


Catharine the Great: Self-Polished Diamond of the Hermitage

Catharine the Great: Self-Polished Diamond of the Hermitage

Two hundred and fifty years after Catherine the Great founded the Hermitage in Russia, the Hermitage Amsterdam presents her life story in a sumptuous exhibition containing over 300 objects.At the age of fourteen, the German princess Catherine (1729–1796) was married off to the Russian tsar. She later overthrew her husband, Peter III, and claimed the throne for herself. Catherine would become the greatest tsarina of all time. She had ambitious plans to reform the whole empire and acted with great foresight. Although she encountered setbacks, her achievements were astounding.Catherine had a tremendous passion for art and contributed more than anyone else to the world’s greatest art collection. She was an enlightened despot, corresponding with Voltaire and Diderot. She added a new territory to her empire as large as France, and including the Crimea. And in all her endeavours, she had a sharp eye for talented people who could help her, such as the Orlov brothers and her most influential lover, Potemkin. She was a diamond of her own making.Hermitage, Amsterdam, June 15 until January 15 2017.www.hermitage.nl   More >


From Rodin to Bourgeois: sculpture in the 20th century

From Rodin to Bourgeois: sculpture in the 20th century

Highlights from 20th European and American century sculpture from 1876 to 1965, with works from Auguste Rodin, Edgar Degas, Ernst Ludwig Kirchner, Hans Arp, Alexander Calder, Alberto Giacometti, Julio González, Henry Moore, Naum Gabo, Barbara Hepworth, Carl Andre, Donald Judd, Jean Tinguely, Louise Bourgeois  and many others. www.gemeentemuseum.nl  October 15 to January 21  More >


Jesus Christ Superstar

Jesus Christ Superstar

Italian producer and director Massimo Piparo created this stage version of the Tim Rice and Andrew Lloyd Webber musical in 2014 to mark the 40th anniversary of the release of the film version. It was such a success at its original venue of the Teatro Sistina in Rome that it is now on tour.The 50-strong cast is headed by the American singer Ted Neeley who played the role of Jesus in Norman Jewison's film version some 40 years ago and can still reach the top notes of this rock score.Heineken Music Hall, Amsterdam, December 14 to 17; World Forum, The Hague, December 20 to January 8; Martini Plaza, Groningen, January 18 to 22.Tickets: www.eventim.nl   More >


ABN Amro World Tennis Tournament

ABN Amro World Tennis Tournament

Top international players will compete in the ABN Amro World Tennis Tournament. No names have yet been announced, but it seems likely that 2016 surprise winner Martin Klizan will return.The tournament also offers special entertainment on Ladies' Day, Kids' Day and Family Day.Ahoy, Rotterdam, February 13 to19.www.abnamrowtt.nl  More >


Picasso by the sea

Picasso by the sea

Ceramics and sculptures by Picasso from the time the artist lived and worked on the French Rivièra. At this time Picasso’s love for sculpture and ceramics was rekindled resulting in a particularly creative period. From 1947 –when he came to his chateau by the sea -until his death Picasso produced some 4,000 sculptures and ceramic works, many featuring familiar themes from his native Spain, such as the bullring.www.beeldenaanzee.nl October 13 - March 5 2017  More >


Skating

Skating

The Netherlands plays host to the ISU World Cup short-track skating competition in 2017, following the growing popularity of the sport and the achievements of Sjinkie Knegt and Jorien ter Mors.Ahoy, Rotterdam, March 10 to 12 2017.www.ahoy.nl   More >


Hubert de Givenchy: to Audrey with love

Hubert de Givenchy: to Audrey with love

A retrospective of the designs of French couturier Givenchy, chosen by the man himself, this exhibition puts the spotlight on his friendship with muse Audrey Hepburn who wore many of his creations, both on and off screen. The exhibition spans almost half a century, from the opening of the house of Givenchy  in 1952 until 1995 when the designer stepped down.Gemeentemuseum Den Haag  November 26 to March 26  More >


Apassionata

Apassionata

Cinema of Dreams is the title of the latest show featuring fifty horses, among them Arabs, Lusitanos, Shetland ponies and Shires. They are surrounded by people, music, dance, stunts and lighting effects.Apparently it's about two friends who get caught up in the opening of a new cinema, but it's really about the spectacle.Ahoy, Rotterdam, April 8 and 9.www.apassionata.com  More >