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What’s on this week: 4-10 August

11:54 03/08/2023
Summer festivities roll on along with a welcome splash of interior activities, from family events to music and art

The weather is certainly proving unpredictable. So it’s a good thing that Summer of Tour & Taxis has activities both indoors and out. The programme is so big, it’s split up into categories of sport, art, fun and parties, good for young and old. Pop in for ping pong, beach volleyball or the paddle club, embark on an art trail, catch an exhibition, sign up for Battle Kart (go-karting mixed with video gaming and augmented reality) or take the whole family to the Bubble Planet Experience. And there’s more on top of that. Avenue du Port 86C


This summer classical music festival aims to be inclusive and accessible. Each evening, Classissimo stages a different themed concert in an appealing programme that ranges from folk and romantic music and Piazzolla to female composers and a special evening for youngsters with the family favourite Pierre et le loup (pictured). The finale on 10 August is devoted to Greek music with the singer Kostas Thomaidis accompanied by a trio of musicians. It all takes place at the rather grand Théâtre Royal du Parc. 4-10 August, 3 Rue de la Loi


Take advantage of discounted combi tickets to two exhibitions: Jean Jullien: Studiolo at MIMA and The Artwork as a Living System at iMAL. It’s only a six-minute stroll between the two venues. At MIMA, the London-based French artist, illustrator and graphic designer invites viewers into the brightly colourful world of his first solo exhibition at the digital arts museum. Meanwhile, Christa Sommerer and Laurent Mignonneau connect art and nature with innovative artistic techniques at the centre for digital cultures and technology. Tickets available at both sites, not online. Until 24 September, MIMA Quai du Hainaut 39-41; iMAL Quai des Charbonnages 30 (Molenbeek-Saint-Jean)

(c)Courtesy Galeries

Cinema Galeries L’heure d’été film festival is dedicated to Mexico this year, with movies old and new screening both in the cinema and in the open-air at Vaux Hall and the Abattoir. (The latter is covered, so don’t let the weather scare you off.) Galeries also continues its excellent Expat Cinema programme over the summer, with recent English-subtitled international titles such as the Norwegian dark comedy Sick of Myself and L’île rouge, itself about expats – the ones saying goodbye to a colonial Madagascar in the 1970s. Visitors can also catch talks with directors at Galeries, as well as Belgian premieres of international films. Galerie de la Reine 28

Squarely Furry

Don’t miss the adventures of Little Furry for children at the Comics Art Museum as it approaches its final week. Squarely Furry invites little ones from the age of three to climb, jump, hide and crawl from one scene to the next. Little Furry is the invention of comic artist Pierre Bailly and scriptwriter Céline Fraipont; a colourful, playful and immersive world that’s without dialogue. Until 15 August, Rue des Sables 20


The elegant spaces of the art deco jewel Villa Empain are filled this summer with the exhibition House of Dreamers. The collective show raises questions about the relationship between artists and domestic space by exploring the notion of the decorative in modern and contemporary art. Discover furniture, objects, wallpapers and tapestries that convey poetic, political and social messages. Until 1 October, Avenue Franklin Roosevelt 67 (Ixelles)

Mahy Autoworld

Legendary American muscle car the Chevrolet Corvette turns 70 this year and to celebrate this landmark occasion Autoworld Museum is hosting a special exhibition showcasing eight different generations from 1953. With 16 immaculate examples of this iconic vehicle on display, it’s a must-see for any petrol-heads. Other summer shows at the museum include a selection of iconic, unrestored cars from the outstanding Mahy Collection (pictured), plus some of the mythical cars and gadgets from the Bond movie No Time to DieUntil 27 August, Autoworld, Parc du Cinquantenaire 11

Art Nouveau BELvue

The capital showcase its heritage architecture and design with the free exhibition Art Nouveau. Unique objects with a tale to tell. As part of Art Nouveau Brussels 2023, the BELvue museum and the King Baudouin Foundation present some of the finest pieces acquired by the foundation that highlight Belgium’s pioneering role in the movement. From Victor Horta’s exemplary furniture to Paul Hankar’s designs for stores and restaurants and sumptuous pieces of jewellery by Philippe Wolfers, this is a rare opportunity to discover some emblematic arts and crafts masterpieces. Until 7 January, BELvue museum, Place des Palais 7


(c)Courtesy Bermuda Festival 2

After the wild all-nighters the come with the Gentse Feesten, the people of Ghent chill out during the family-friendly Bermuda Festival. Set along the Scheldt river in the cheerful Keizer Park – accessible only by pedestrian bridges – the free event features a couple of world music stages, kids’ entertainments, food trucks and plenty of dancing.  4-6 August, Sidonie Verhelststraat, Ghent

(c)Courtesy We Can Dance 2

It’s the 10th anniversary edition of We Can Dance, a festival combining music, food and stylish decor on the beach at Zeebrugge. Seven stages (covered in case of inclement weather) feature hip-hop, techno and disco concerts and are flanked by sea, dunes and culinary offerings that are a cut above. The theme changes annually, influenced by spring and summer fashion trends, and this year those happen to be ocean-inspired blues and greens. There’s no dress code, but you are invited to dress to fit in with this aquatic wonderland – expect to see mesh tops, shimmering sequins and maybe a mermaid or two. 5-6, 12-13 August, Zeedijk, Zeebrugge

Bruce Nauman

The Belgian coast is also a cultural destination in the summer with Knokke Art Fair one of the highlights of the resort’s seasonal calendar. The modern and contemporary art and design fair is an independent event focused on quality international exhibits. It also celebrates the grand tradition of collecting art in Belgium with a highlight show by curator Alexander Tuteleers featuring sculpture in particular (pictured: Bruce Nauman’s Double poke in the eye II). Star of the this year’s edition is iconic Japanese artist Yayoi Kusama and her paintings and sculpture dating from 1952 to 2011. 5-15 August, Grand Casino Knokke, Zeedijk-Albertstrand 509

Stars Night

Marvel at a night sky full of shooting stars during the astronomical celebration Stars Night 2023 at the Euro Space Center. The annual family experience coincides with the peak showering of perseid’s shooting stars. Occurring shortly before a new moon, conditions are ideal for observing the galaxies. Indoor and outdoor activities, including talks and workshops, start at 16.30 while the star watching begins at 22.00. It’s a free event, no reservation required. 10 August 16.30, Rue devant les Hétres 1, Transinne (Luxembourg province)


If you’re looking for an all-star line-up on a more human scale than the giant festivals, don’t miss Lokerse Feesten. Once the summer’s best-kept secret, it is now on any serious festival-goer’s list, with this year’s bill featuring Blur, Skunk Anansie, Siouxsie, Wilco and the return to the stage of Belgian band K’s Choice (pictured), following Sam Bettens’ gender transition. A solidly urban festival, it takes place in the heart of Lokeren, near Ghent. 4-13 August, Grote Kaai, Lokeren (East Flanders)


Do you like folk and acoustic music? If so Festival Dranouter will be right up your street with an array of musicians from many nations. Yhis year it has a particular focus on the UK with artists such as Dallahan, Noble Jacks and Eliza Carthy and the Restitution. In addition, there are literally dozens of food options as well as three separate camping zones, all set in this quiet corner of Flanders, near the French border. 4-6 August, Dikkebusstraat 234, Dranouter (West Flanders)


Jazz and Blues musicians from across the world gather in rural Ferme Madelonne for the annual Gouvy Jazz & Blues Festival. Located near the Luxembourg border, the festival hosts Jazz on Saturday and Blues and Rock on Sunday. The 43rd edition – continuing under the banner ‘Gouvy is Groovy’ - includes the Lauren Henderson Trio, Sunny Side Jazz Band and from the UK, The Cinelli Brothers. As usual, the site offers free campsite and parking, and enticingly, local speciality beers and food. 5-7 August, Sterpigny 4, Gouvy (Luxembourg)


Hear beautiful music in idyllic surrounds during the Intra Muros Festival at Alden-Biesen castle. A full day of European soloists and ensembles perform a diverse programme on lute, violin, harpsichord and other early music instruments. Guests are also invited to explore the grounds and indulge in on-site food and drink. 5 August, Kasteelstraat 6, Bilzen (Limburg)

See The Bulletin's music festival guide and family and arts festival guide for more information on summer activities.

Photos: ©Courtesy Galeries; Fondation-Boghossian, House of Dreamers, Zora Mann, Nigin Beck; BELvue Museum ©; ©Courtesy We Can Dance 

Written by Sarah Crew and Lisa Bradshaw