Lifestyle & Culture

Dispatches’ weekly weekend event guide for Europe: 16 March through 19 March 2017

The Ides of March have come and gone, but the madness remains – from Theresa May getting the okay to cut ties between the EU and the UK, to professional Donald Trump impersonator Geert Wilders hoping to persuade a few of his fellow parliamentarians to allow his party to be a part of Holland’s Next Top Coalition Government…

Bet you wish you had a bracket for this, huh?

Well, set your potential dumpster fire of a Final Four bracket aside for a moment to check out some wonderful events happening all over Europe this weekend, including the 300th anniversary of Maria Theresa in Vienna, film and music festivals in Barcelona and Berlin, and the best way to celebrate St. Patrick’s Day in Dublin.

roze-filmdagen-definitief-1920x1080-met-logo-flattenAmsterdam – Roze Filmdagen: We’re late to the party with this one, but better late than never, right?

Drawing to a close this Sunday is the 20th edition of Roze Filmdagen, Amsterdam’s LGBTQIA film festival.

Held at Ketelhuis Cinema and surrounding venues around the Westergasfabriek, Roze Filmdagen has a wide variety of films from around the world, with a focus on Dutch talent for the 20th anniversary.

Tickets for the festival go for 10€ for each film, 9€ for afternoon screenings; online purchases can be had here.

Barcelona – Mecal International Short and Animation Film Festival: This one started on Tuesday, but there’s plenty of time to catch the excitement at the 19th annual Mecal International Short and Animation Film Festival.

Held at Barcelona’s l’Arts Santa Mònica from 14 through 19 March and the next two weekends thereafter, the 2017 edition of Mecal will be split into different genres for each week of the festival. Animation kicks off the first days of the festival, followed by fiction on the second weekend, and documentaries to wrap up the third and final weekend.

Tickets for Mecal range between 2€ and 12€ for parallel activities (workshops and panels), 5€ for a single ticket to a given film, and 25€ for a full festival pass; ticket info and purchasing are here.

Berlin – MaerzMusik: For 10 nights at the Haus der Berliner Festspiele and surrounding locations, the third annual MaerzMusik music festival will devote “space and time dedicated to concerts, performances, installations, film screenings, discourse and exhibitions” to answering complex questions about time and social concerns in the present day.

MaerzMusik welcomes both established and up-and-coming artists to tackle such issues as racism, financial crises, spirituality and more through their art.

Tickets go for about 20€ to 25€; the full schedule of admission fees can be had here.

Brussels – Brussels Dance!: We’ve only a couple more weekends left for the Brussels Dance! dance festival, set to end 31 March.

During the second season of Brussels Dance!, the festival will feature performances – including Cold Blood, This kind of bird flies backwards, A Taste of Poison, and Louis Vanneste – Gone in a Heartbeat – at KVS, L’L, Garage 29, Halles de Schaerbeek, and eight other locales throughout Brussels.

Reduced ticket fees for the performances can be had via the free Brussels Dance Pass, though you’ll still have to book your tickets at the participating venues.

hqdefaultDublin – St. Patrick’s Festival: Put down the green beer and keep your hands to yourself, for the best way to truly celebrate the day “when everyone wants to be Irish” is to head up to Dublin for the 21st annual St. Patrick’s Festival.

Established by the Irish government in November of 1995, the festival “sets out to reflect the talents and achievements of Irish people on many national and world stages,” serving as a spotlight “for the manifold skills of the people of Ireland, of every age and social background.”

Walking tours, music performances, a treasure hunt, and, of course, a parade are some of the things to look forward to experiencing during the celebration.

Geneva – Geneva International Motor Show: Wondering where to find the latest and greatest in the European and global automotive scenes?

Look no further than Palexpo in Geneva for the 87th edition of the Geneva International Motor Show.

Open to the public through this Sunday, the auto show will have world debuts from

• Alpine (famed French manufacturer who returned to the living with their retro-modern A110),

• Volkswagen (who debuted their Audi A7-based CC-replacement Arteon)

• and Opel (who, along with British sibling Vauxhall, were sold by now-former parent company General Motors to French manufacturer Peugeot-Citroen last week).

Swiss watch maker TAG Heuer has a special exhibit devoted to its motor sport heritage during Geneva, including racing simulators, a handful of race cars, and a custom Porsche 911R.

Tickets to the show range from CHF 9 for children between 6 and 16, to CHF 16 for adults; purchasing and info are here.

London – London Beer Week: From the same minds behind London Cocktail Week comes London Beer Week, “a true celebration of beers, ales, lagers and ciders alike, set against the backdrop of the capital.”

Throughout this week, the spotlight will shine upon several breweries and tap rooms, offering their finest brews and suds. Those who wish to partake will ferried from each location via rickshaw.

And since we’re near the end of LBW, you’ll definitely want to visit The Beer Edit over in East London.

This magical beer village will spring up at the Oval Space from now through Saturday to fill your mug with beers and ciders galore, complemented by lots of parties and fun on tap. Fourteen “awesome pop-ups,” a free beer upon arrival (and 2£+ brews thereafter), street foods, live DJs… what could possibly go wrong?

Tickets for the rickshaw tours can be had here for 10£, while those for The Beer Edit — also for 10£ — can be had here.

Paris – Saut Hermès: Put down that Birkin bag and saddle up for this, the eighth edition of Saut Hermès at the Grand Palais this Friday through Sunday.

Sponsored by famed French fashion house Hermès, the show-jumping extravaganza will have a different programme each night, “punctuated by lyrical extracts from Don Quixote’s Dream, a previously unseen performance conceived by stuntman Mario Luraschi and dramatist Florient Azoulay.”

A new five-star status puissance class, the Prix du 24 Faubourg, will be up for grabs Saturday night.

Tickets range from 60€ to 110€; though the event is sold-out, you can leave your email address in the event extra tickets arrive.

mariatheresia_v1Vienna – 300 Jahre Maria Theresia. Strategist – Mother – Reformer: Three hundred years ago this coming May, Austria’s Queen Maria Theresa Walburga Amalia Christina (Maria Theresia auf Deutsch) was born in Vienna at the Hofburg Palace.

She would go on to become the only female ruler of one of the Habsburg dominions, and would be the last of her kind; her son, Joseph II, would be the first to rule under the merged House of Habsburg-Lorraine.

During her four-decade rule between 1740 and 1780, the House of Habsburg saw its final golden age, Maria Theresa becoming the mythical “great mother” of Austria through her reforms in education, finance, commerce, agriculture, civil rights (unless you were Jewish or Protestant during the first 20 years of her rule), medicine, and the military.

Thus, Vienna celebrates the complicated portrait of Maria Theresa with its months-long exhibition, 300 Jahre Maria Theresia. Strategist – Mother – Reformer.

Kicking off yesterday and running through 29 November 2017 (the day of her passing from this mortal coil at the age of 63 from long-term effects related to smallpox), the exhibition will be split between four locations and four themes (one per location). The focal point of the exhibit is a portrait of the queen by Jean-Étienne Liotard, “the result of a spontaneous encounter between the monarch and the artist during his first sojourn” to Austria.

Tickets and information for the exhibition can be found here; a combined ticket for all four venues is 16€ for children between 6 and 18, 29€ for adults.

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