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What’s on this week: 10-16 May

19:00 09/05/2019
Our top picks of culture and activities in Brussels

In A Reason to Talk, playwright Sachli Gholamalizad (pictured) used video projections to confront her mother about family patterns that developed after they fled the Iranian Revolution and settled in Antwerp province. It took the country by storm, and she produced a second piece, which continued the story of her life and general exploration of the meaning of self in a land of others. Let us Believe in the Beginning of the Cold Season is the third in the trilogy, and tickets are selling fast. (In multiple languages, with French and Dutch surtitles) 11-17 May, KVS, Quai aux Pierres de Taille 7

Food, glorious food! Pick and choose to your heart’s content at the Brussels Food Festival, a cacophony of local food trucks and stands with artisanal products. There are also workshops, including creative sewing, dance and yoga. 11-12 May, Boulevard du Souverain (at Chaussée de Wavre, Auderghem)

“The lustre and evenness of her mezzo-soprano are genuinely things of wonder, perfectly in scale yet conveying a sense of great power being held in reserve, and when she thins her tone to a luminous mezza voce the results are bewitching.” The Guardian – along with the rest of the world – is convinced of the talents of Czech mezzo-soprano Magdalena Kozena, and you will be, too, during this recital of Brahms, Mussorgsky, Bartok and Shostakovich She is accompanied by American pianist Yefim Bronfman. 11 May 20.00, La Monnaie, Place de la Monnaie 5

Zing Tsjeng

Dinner discussions sponsored by the Full Circle international club are always intriguing, and this week no less so. Two of the UK’s biggest name in women’s rights – Care International’s Helen Pankhurst and Vice editor Zing Tsjeng (pictured), who set to work in very different ways – converse with each other and with guests about how women have changed the world and yet are still not on an equal footing with men. One need not be a Full Circle member to take part. 14 May 20.00-21.30, Full Circle House Chaussée de Vleurgat 89 (Ixelles)

Jews and Muslims have been living together in Morocco for thousands of years, sometimes in strife and sometimes peacefully. The exhibition L’Autre C’est Moi (The Other is Me) looks at this tumultuous relationship, as national identities blend with cultural differences in sometimes fascinating ways. Until 2 May 2021, Jewish Museum of Belgium, Rue des Minimes 21

A new museum has opened at the Botanic Garden Meise, just a tiny hop over the border with Brussels. The Labo du Bois is all about wood, from its use as a building materials, to its stabilising effect on the climate to its hidden microscopic secrets. A fun and educational  outing for the whole family. Nieuwelaan 38, Meise

Boeren Marché

Support the short food chain at the new farmers’ market, Boeren Marché, at Tour & Taxis. Some 15 producers from Brussels’ agricultural outskirts bring their fresh produce into town every Friday throughout the summer. You’ll find fruits, veggies, fish and meat but also bread, cheese, beer, honey and artisanal ice cream. It’s a good place to pick up gifts of Belgian products, too. Noon to 19.00, Place de la musique, Tour & Taxis, Avenue du port 86

Goodness, the confusion generated by wanting to start your own business in Belgium is never ending. Which is why The Bulletin and ING bank’s seminar on the topic is so popular among expats. The English-language event covers topics like registering your business, banking services available and tax issues. It’s free, but register here. 16 May 13.30-17.30, ING Art Center, 6 Place Royale

A new permanent exhibition has opened in the Royal Museum of the Armed Forces that covers the most controversial period in Belgian history. War, Occupation, Liberation is an immersive experience using video, documentation and more than 2,000 pieces to analyse the interbellum and beginning of the Second World War. It’s in the middle of a completely renovated space, and offers free entry on Sunday, 12 May. Parc du Cinquantenaire 3

Ever seen 40 bicycling musicians? Well you will if you go to Fete de l’Avenue de Tervuren, a three-kilometre-long festival with street theatre, markets, food and a whole lot of attention paid to cycling, in honour of this year’s Grand Depart in Brussels. 12 May 10.00-19.00, Avenue de Tervuren (Woluwe-Saint-Pierre and Etterbeek)

Cécile MacLorin Salvant

OUTSIDE BRUSSELS
Don’t let the weather scare you away from Mithra Jazz À Liège because it’s all indoors. Discover the city’s finest performance venues as you see some of the world’s most notable jazz masters, such as American singers Cécile McLorin Salvant (pictured) and Haily Tuck, and the Sal La Rocca Quartet featuring French trumpeter Stéphane Belmondo. 16-19 May, across Liège

Antwerp art galleries, spaces and museums invite you to Antwerp Art Weekend, four days of special events and exhibitions. The opening party at the city’s art academy hosts food, performances and teachers acting as DJs. Night of the Visual Arts, meanwhile, is a big interactive art/music bash. 16-19 May, across Antwerp

Photos: Sachli Gholamalizad/©Gaëtan Chekaiban/KVS, Boeren Marché courtesy Tour & Taxis, Cécile MacLorin Salvant/©M. Fitton/De Philharmonie de Paris

Written by Lisa Bradshaw