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Culture beat – November 14

15:34 14/11/2014
The best of Belgium –home decor, beer, documentaries and post-punk rock - plus local theatre and Italian-themed after-working

Belgian documentaries are in the spotlight in Le Week-end du doc until Sunday across Brussels and Wallonia. With 135 screenings in more than 80 venues: 42 in Brussels and 41 in Wallonia, the second edition of the event showcases the depth and diversity of francophone documentary films – a too-frequently overlooked genre in the world of cinema. Screenings are in cinemas, libraries, cultural centres, café-restaurants and youth centres. If you can’t make the screenings, don’t miss broadcasts on RTBF television and radio and Arte Belgique

With winter fast approaching, it’s time to snuggle indoors. For inspiration on creating a cosy abode, look no further than the home and interior fair Cocoon which opens on Saturday and continues until November 23 at Brussels Expo. The annual event is the biggest home deco fair in the capital with 300 exhibitors ready to advise on latest trends in interior decoration. This year’s theme is surrealism and Magritte with around a dozen WCs decorated by artists including Benjamin Sparks and Christopher Coppens. For workshops, from cooking to kite surfing, reserve your place here. Free entrance for women on Ladies’ Day on Tuesday November 18.

If your horizons extend beyond Belgium, find information on more than 40 countries at Go International today and tomorrow at Autoworld in Cinquantenaire Park. The fair is for anyone interested in going abroad to work, study or learn a language. Workshops and seminars provide the lowdown on expat life, international careers and multilingualism.

Discover the secrets of Belgian brew Cantillon in a public brewing session on Sunday at The Brussels Gueuze museum. Learn how to make the brewery’s speciality and don’t miss an opportunity to sample its range.

Enjoy la dolce vita in a Festa Italiana EU presidency party for Italy, organised by after-work revellers @seven at Le Bouche à Oreille on Friday evening, November 22. Italian music, cinema, art, food and wine, from 19.00; DJ party from 22.00. Italian buffet by reservation or call 0475.674.291. Dress code Azzurro (sky blue) or Italian chic.

Alternatively, experience Belgian post-punk rock band Odieu et Le Feu at Botanique on Friday, November 21. Underground icon Didier Odieu returns with latest album Désordres. The singer songwriter is a grandiose figure in the Belgian musical scene; a charismatic performer who eschews the bright lights for satire and intimate audiences.

For an evening of entertainment combining music and comedy reserve a place now for StandUp Brussels’ staging of Showstopper! The Improvised Musical on Saturday November 22. Each performance is a brand-new version of the award-winning show thanks to audience participation. It’s an all-singing, all-dancing production that promises to be unpredictable and hilariously funny. The Showstoppers are experienced comic hoofers with Edinburgh fringe, the West End and BBC Radio Four success topping their CV. At Théâtre 140; preshow Indian meal available for €12.

Improvisation is similarly on the programme at The Warehouse Studio Theatre when the American Theatre Company presents Improv workshops and shows on November 22 and 23: Rocket Sugar Factory (Jim Libby and Jacob Banigan) top the bill and are joined by guest performers.

Written by Sarah Crew