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Ambrose Akinmusire Quintet

The American trumpet player Ambrose Akinmusire is one of the most important jazz musicians of his generation because of the emotional impact of his playing. With his quintet, he plays numbers from his new Blue Note album which can be considered jazz as well as contemporary pop.

Bimhuis, Amsterdam, April 18.



Barbie's Birthday Bash

A celebration of Barbie's fiftieth year in the Netherlands with an exhibition of Barbie and her clothes. There are 50 Barbies on show dating from 1960 to 2010 and reflecting the fashion of the times.

You can also book a Barbie high tea which offers savoury and sweet treats, many of them in pink.

Museum of Bags and Purses, Amsterdam until May 4.


Boom Chicago

The comedy theatre's new show is What's Up With Those Beards?, which takes a look at the sudden prevalence for facial hair. Using improv, sketch comedy, music, video and social media, the show holds up a mirror to the madness of modern times.

Boom Chicago, Rozengracht, Amsterdam, every Tuesday, Thursday and Saturday throughout April.



Bram Stadhouders Trio and the Netherlands Chamber Choir

A performance of Henosis, which is old Greek for unity, composed by Bram Stadhouders for eight singers and an improvisational trio. It was commissioned by the North Sea Jazz Festival and was a highlight at last year's November Music Festival in Den Bosch.

It is performed by guitarist-composer Stadhouders, with members of the Netherlands Chamber Choir, drummer Onno Govaert and David Hoogerheide on keyboard laptop. Klaas Stok conducts.

Bimhuis, Amsterdam, April 27.


Cliff Richard

Sixty decades on and Cliff Richard is Still Reelin' and A-Rockin'. No wonder that's the name of his latest show in which he sings a collection of his hits.

Ziggo Dome, Amsterdam, May 17.



Expedition Silk Road

A glimpse of the long-lost civilisations along the legendary Silk Road, the trade route which ran from China to the Mediterranean from before Christ until the 15th century. The exhibition provides an expedition along the route using 250 objects from the Hermitage collection, including sculpture, precious silks, silver, glass, gold and terracotta excavated by Russian expeditions in the 19th and 20th centuries.

One of the highlights is a more than 9-metre long mural of a deity in battle with predators from the royal palace in Varakhsha (7th-8th century, present-day Uzbekistan). This prized work of art has never left the Hermitage in Russia before, but following its restoration it is on display in Amsterdam during this exhibition.

Hermitage, Amsterdam until September 5.



Food Film Festival

The theme for this year's festival is Gobal Cuisines and the food on offer includes gastronomic treats from Peru, Chinese dumplings and Surinamese roti.

The films being screened include two excellent documentaries. My Name is Salt shows the hard life of an Indian salt farmer, and A River Changes Course provides an insight into the enormous influence of globalisation on Cambodian fishermen and farmers.

There is also light relief in the form of The Lunchbox which shows the effect on a young housewife and an older man of a mistaken delivery in Mumbai's famously efficient lunchbox delivery system.

There are also lectures and workshops on subjects ranging from the future of the fishing industry to how to guarantee food security.

Westergasfabriek, Amsterdam, May 9, 10 and 11.




The Netherlands national football team plays a series of friendly matches in the run up to the World Cup in Brazil in June.

Oranje versus Equador - Arena, Amsterdam, May 17.

Oranje versus Ghana - Feyenoord Stadium, Rotterdam, May 31.

Oranje versus Wales - Arena, Amsterdam, June 4.

The Dutch youth team plays the Luxemburg youth team in a qualifier for the UEFA Youth League in October.

De Geusselt, Maastricht, June 3.





Dominic Dromgoole is taking his Shakespeare's Globe production of Hamlet on tour and the first stop outside the UK is Amsterdam. This is a pacy, pared-down version of the play, with eight main players cleverly moving between up to five roles each and minimal scenery. And at just under three hours, it is expertly speeded up without missing out anything essential.

Stadsschouwburg, Amsterdam, April 29 and 30.



Holland Festival

The annual cultural festival kicks off with Vortex Temporum by the Flemish choreographer Anne Teresa de Keersmaeker. The dancers of her group Rosas are accompanied by the contemporary music ensemble Ictus.

Other highlights include The Valley of Astonishment by Peter Brook and Bouffes du Nord, Handel's opera Orlando, 'Tis Pity She's A Whore by the English theatre company Cheek By Jowl and the culinary drama The Kitchen by Indian director Roysten Abel. 

Various locations, Amsterdam, June 1 to 26.



Imagine Film Festival

This year's festival for fantasy, horror, thriller and science fiction films screens 70 feature and short films. It also includes the Night of Terror and master classes and Q&As with various guest film-makers.

There are two world premieres on the programme: Ate de Jong's Deadly Virtues: Love, Honour, Obey and Capsule by Djie Han Thung. Also screening are Terry Gilliam's The Zero Theorem, The Wind Rises by animation master Hayao Miyazaki and The Raid 2 by Gareth Evans.

EYE Film Institute, Amsterdam, April 9 to 18.


Jeff Wall: Tableaux Pictures Photographs 1996-2013

A selection of nearly forty works by the Canadian photographer Jeff Wall (1946) which offers a survey of his work since 1996. He is best known for his large-scale, back-lit cibachrome photographs, in both black and white and colour, which are tableaux created from his own experiences.

Stedelijk Museum, Amsterdam until August 3.




The annual national fair for modern and contemporary art, which is celebrating its 30th edition this year, attracts round 60 top quality galleries who reflect the diversity and pluralism of Dutch art. Some of the participating galleries take an extra stand to highlight the work of just one of their artists.

RAI, Amsterdam, June 4 to 9.



Marcel Wanders

A major retrospective of the work of Dutch designer Marcel Wanders (1963) who made his international name in 1995 with Knotted Chair. Wanders, known as the Lady Gaga of the design world, often mixes innovative materials and techniques to create pieces that are sustainable. His designs are found in collections and museums all over the world and are regularly featured in magazines.

Stedelijk Museum, Amsterdam until June 15.



Miley Cyrus

Twerking and other suggestive movements will no doubt accompanying the songs from her recent album, Bangerz.

Ziggo Dome, Amsterdam, May 2.



National Opera

An opportunity to see the little-performed Arabella by Richard Strauss. This sparkling Viennese opera follows the fortunes of a family trying to ward of poverty by marrying off their eldest daughter to a rich man. Jacquelyn Wagner makes her debut with the company in the title role, with Agneta Eichenholz as her younger sister and Charlotte Margiono as their mother. It is directed by Christof Loy and conducted by Marc Albrecht.

Muziektheater, Amsterdam, April 20 (matinee), 23 and 25.

Gounod's Faust, about the man who sells his soul to the devil and one of the world's most popular operas, is performed in Amsterdam for the first time in many years. It is directed by the Spaniard Àlex Ollé and has spectacular lighting effects by Urs Schönebaum. Michael Fabiano sings Faust with Mikhail Petrenko as Mephistopheles. The conductor is Marc Minkowski.

Muziektheater, Amsterdam, May 10, 13, 15, 18 (matinee), 21 and 23.

Martijn Padding's Laika, The Terror of Viewing Figures is the story of Robbert, the presenter of a successful television talk show, his breakdown and rescue by Russian cosmonaut Yuri Gagarin and space dog Laika. The libretto is by Dutch writer PF Thomése and the director is artist Aernout Mik. The cast includes Thomas Oliemans, Claron McFadden and Marcel Beekman.

Stadsschouwburg, Amsterdam, June 3, 5, 6, 7 and 8 (matinee and evening).

Verdi's Falstaff is his final opera and a comedy about the fat, old knight Sir John Falstaff and his comeuppence at the hands of two rich married ladies. It is directed by Robert Carsen and conducted by Daniele Gatti. Ambrogio Maestri takes on the role of Falstaff.

Muziektheater, Amsterdam, June 7, 10, 12, 16, 19 and 22 (matinee).



Netherlands Philharmonic

Brahms' concerto for violin, cello and orchestra with soloists Antje Weithaas (violin) and Julian Steckel (cello). Also on the programme are Circulating Ocean by Hosokawa and La Mer by Debussy. Marc Albrecht conducts.

Concertgebouw, Amsterdam, April 22 and 26.

Carlo Rizzi conducts Beethoven's overture The Ruins of Athens, Songs and Dances of Death by Mussorgsky and Rachmaninov's symphony nr 2. The soloist is the bass Dimitry Ivashchenko.

Concertgebouw, Amsterdam, May 17, 19 and 20.

Stephen Hough is the soloist for Dvorák's piano concerto. Also on the programme are Salonen by Giro and Beethoven's symphony nr 6, the Pastoral. Hugh Wolff conducts.

Concertgebouw, Amsterdam, May 24 and 25 (matinee).

Marc Albrecht conducts Haydn's symphony nr 98, Mahler's symphony nr 4 and the Strauss lieder Das Rosenband and Morgen with soloist Elizabeth Watts (soprano).

Concertgebouw, Amsterdam, June 14 and 16.



Nine Inch Nails

Trent Reznor and the band are back with their mix of industrial rock and dark ambient. They perform numbers from the new album, Hesitation Marks.

Heineken Music Hall, Amsterdam, May 27.



Open Air Theatre

The open air theatre in Amsterdam's Vondel park presents a packed programme featuring pop and classical music concerts, dance ranging from ballet to the Lindy Hop and children's theatre. This summer's programme will be available at the end of April.

Vondelpark, Amsterdam, May 5 until August 25.



Orange Tea Theatre Company

The company specialises in the performance of modern plays in the English language and runs a season of staged readings each season.

Volts by Sam Morris delves into the mind of Stanley Milgram, celebrated psychologist and the man behind the infamous 'obedience experiments' of the 1960s which demonstrated how many people will harm another simply under the instruction of an authority figure. In the play, Milgram is visited by an old experimental subject.

De Melkweg, Amsterdam, May 22, 23 and 24 (matinee and evening).



Rembrandt's Saskia

Rembrandt's portrait of his first wife, Saskia van Uylenburgh, is on loan from Washington's National Gallery of Art. The portrait, which has recently been restored, has never been shown at a Dutch museum before. 

Rembrandt probably began painting the portrait in 1634/1635, shortly after he and Saskia were married, and only completed it some years later, around 1640. It was last shown in Europe in 1894, in Paris.

Amsterdam Museum, Amsterdam until August 2015.



Richard Mosse

An opportunity to see Richard Mosse's The Enclave, a multi-media installation which represented Ireland at the 55th international art exhibition La Biennale di Venezia. The installation, consisting of six large screens, represents the conflict situation in Congo and was shot with infra-red film designed for camouflage detection. The result is vibrant, psychedelic, magenta-coloured sites of the jungle war zone.

Foam, Amsterdam until June 1.




Riverdance, which originated as the interval performance during the 1994 Eurovision Song Contest hosted by Ireland, is still touring, albeit in a slim-downed version. It still features traditional Irish step dancing, with its rapid leg movements and stationary body and arms.

Heineken Music Hall, Amsterdam, April 18, 19 and 20.





Roman Vishniac (Re)discovered

The photographer Roman Vishniac (1897-1990) is known throughout the world for his images of Jewish life in eastern Europe before World War II. However, recent discoveries show that during his fifty-year career Vishniac also photographed Berlin street scenes in the 1920s, the rise of the Nazis in the 1930s and Jewish refugees in Europe and America in the 1930s and 1940s.

His sharp black and white photos are now the subject of this major exhibition.

Jewish Historic Museum, Amsterdam until August 24.



Roy Hargrove Quintet

One of today's greatest trumpet players returns to Amsterdam to play jazsz and bop which often divergeses surprisingly towards funk, hip-hop and latin.

Bimhuis, Amsterdam, April 24.



Royal Concertgebouw Orchestra

Mozart's violin concerto nr 3 with soloist Frank Peter Zimmermann, and Brahms' piano concerto nr 1 with soloist Krystian Zimerman. Also on the programme is the overture La scala di seta by Rossini. Mariss Jansons conducts.

Concertgebouw, Amsterdam, April 23 and 24.

Andris Nelsons conducts Richard Strauss' Macbeth and Till Eulenspiegels lustige Streiche, and Brahms' symphony nr 2.

Concertgebouw, Amsterdam, May 7 and 8.

Saint-Saëns' magnificent symphony nr 3, the Organ Symphony, is conducted by Fabio Luisi. Also on the programme are Honegger's Rugby and Lalo's Spanish Symphony with solo by first violinist Vesko Eschkenazy.

Concertgebouw, Amsterdam, May 15, 16 and 18 (matinee).

The French conductor Lionel Bringuier makes his debut with the RCO with Rachmaninov's piano concerto nr 2 with soloist Simon Trpceski, and works by Debussy and Skriabin.

Concertgebouw, Amsterdam, May 21, 22 and 23.





The finals of the Women's Sevens World Series takes place in Amsterdam, where reigning champions New Zealand are in Pool A with Spain, USA and Ireland.

Their rivals Australia, just two points behind, are in Pool B with Russia, France and South Africa. Host country the Netherlands are in Pool C with Canada, England and Brazil.

Rugby sevens is a variant of rugby union in which teams are made up of seven players, instead of the usual 15, with shorter matches.

NRCA Stadium, Amsterdam, May 16 and 17.





The Green Marathon is a new event which takes place in the New-West borough of Amsterdam, one of the leafiest in the city. It begins and ends at the Sloterplas lake and past through three parks and along farms and canals.

Sloterplas, Amsterdam, May 11.




Tattoo Convention

Check out the latest tattoo designs and techniques, and admire the tattoos on display in the various competitions.

RAI, Amsterdam, May 30 and June 1.


The Eagles

The American rock band, one of the most successful of the 1970s, is supporting the career-spanning documentary History of the Eagles with a world tour. Glenn Frey, Don Henley, Joe Walsh and Timothy B Schmit will perform hits such as Hotel California and numbers they have never before performed live.

Ziggo Dome, Amsterdam, May 22 and 23.


Titanic: The Artefact Exhibition

Over a century ago, the brand new passenger ship Titanic set sail for New York. But, not long into her maiden voyage, she collided with an iceberg and sank to the bottom of the ocean. Of the 2,228 passengers on board, only 703 survived the disaster. For over 73 years, the Titanic lay at a depth of four kilometres under the ocean, until her final resting place was discovered by a French-American expedition.

Since then, thousands of objects have been brought back to the surface, allowing a glimpse into life on this luxury liner.

This exhibition includes some of those artefacts, such as personal property and one of the ship's safes, together with reconstructions of some of the onboard, including a first class cabin.

Amsterdam Expo, Amsterdam until May 11.



Van Oostsanen, the First Dutch Master

Jacob Cornelisz van Oostsanen (ca. 1475-1533) lived and worked in Amsterdam and is the earliest artist in the city we know by name. This first retrospective of his work, which includes the earliest sketches made of the city, his principal paintings are brought together by Amsterdam Museum and the Stedelijk Museum and St Lawrence's church in Alkmaar.

Amsterdam Museum, Amsterdam until June 29.



Victor Wooten

The American bass player Victor Wooten has won the Bass Player of the Year award from Bass Player magazine three times in a row as well as five Grammy Awards. Among the musicians joining him on stage is his brother Elijah on guitar.

North Sea Jazz Club, Amsterdam, May 1.




War Horse

If you've seen Steven Spielberg's film version of Michael Morpurgo's children's book but would really like to see the original theatre production with its amazing puppets, this Dutch version is easy to follow. The story is simple: boy buys horse, horse is sequestered by the army, boy joins up to find his horse. The action moves from rural Devon to the trenches of First World War France.

Theater Carré, Amsterdam, May 30 to July 13.



World Press Photo

This year's winning World Press Photo is the American photographer John Stanmeyer's shot of African migrants in Djibouti holding up their mobile phones against a night sky in the hope of getting a signal.

It takes pride of place in the exhibition of other winners in various categories such as Sara Naomi Lewkowicz's shot of domestic violence, Steve Winter's puma prowling the hills of Los Angeles and a portrait of a group of blind albino boys in India by Brent Stirton.

Nieuwe Kerk, Amsterdam until June 22.


More What's on

  • Benjamin Herman Quartet with Miguel Rodriguez
  • Noah
  • Justin Timberlake
  • Imagine Film Festival
  • Ambrose Akinmusire Quintet
  • Amstel Gold Race
  • Ashton Brothers
  • Abba Gold - The Theatre Show
  • Riverdance
  • Oldtimers Fair
  • Chinese National Circus
  • Hockey
  • The Euro Crisis: Opportunities and Threats
  • Changing Our Monetary System
  • Hamlet v Hamlet
  • The Bootleg Sixties
  • Roy Hargrove Quintet
  • Virtual Property on the Internet
  • A Weekend In Paris
  • Infusion
  • Masters from the Mauritshuis
  • Motor sport
  • Bram Stadhouders Trio and the Netherlands Chamber Choir
  • Boom Chicago
  • Nederlands Blazers Ensemble
  • Hamlet
  • Materials Fair
  • The Anatomy Lesson: From Rembrandt to Damien Hirst
  • King Lear
  • Victor Wooten
  • Miley Cyrus
  • Barbie's Birthday Bash
  • Netherlands Chamber Orchestra
  • Anne Wenzel - The Opaque Palace
  • Conny Janssen Danst
  • Opera in the Cinema
  • Rootsriders
  • S.H.O.E.S
  • Framing Sculpture: Brancusi, Rosso and Man Ray
  • Running
  • Blaze
  • Mondrian & Cubism
  • Food Film Festival
  • Titanic: The Artefact Exhibition
  • Dalai Lama
  • Cliff Richard
  • Netherlands Chamber Choir
  • Rugby
  • Shell Eco Marathon
  • Dolls and Bears
  • The Eagles
  • Royal Concertgebouw Orchestra
  • Residentie Orchestra
  • Wrestling
  • Orange Tea Theatre Company
  • Spring Utrecht
  • Opera Days
  • Nine Inch Nails
  • National Ballet
  • Richard Mosse
  • Alexandra Bircken
  • Tattoo Convention
  • Football
  • National Touring Opera
  • Scapino Ballet
  • Netherlands Bach Society
  • KunstRAI
  • Opera Zuid
  • Hockey
  • Marcel Wanders
  • Netherlands Philharmonic
  • Organ Recitals
  • Friday Night Skate
  • Tom Jones
  • Rotterdam Philharmonic
  • Tennis
  • World Press Photo
  • Show jumping
  • National Opera
  • Oerol Festival
  • ZZ Top
  • One Direction
  • Holland Festival
  • Introdans
  • Sailing
  • Van Oostsanen, the First Dutch Master
  • Nederlands Dans Theater
  • Liza Minnelli
  • War Horse
  • From Picasso to Sol Le Witt: Artists' Books After 1950
  • North Sea Jazz Festival
  • AndrĂ© Rieu
  • BMX Bikes
  • Jeff Wall: Tableaux Pictures Photographs 1996-2013
  • Roman Vishniac (Re)discovered
  • Open Air Theatre
  • From the Guggenheim Collection to the Cobra Museum: International Abstraction 1949-1960
  • Robeco Summer Nights
  • Mummies: Surviving After Death
  • Expedition Silk Road
  • Lady Gaga
  • Rubens, Van Dyck, Jordaens: The Flemish Baroque
  • National Tattoo
  • Il Divo
  • Sweeney Todd
  • Amsterdam Dance Event
  • Michael BublĂ©
  • Caro Emerald
  • The War of the Worlds
  • Rembrandt's Saskia
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