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What’s on this week: 12-18 November

12:00 10/11/2021
Our top picks of events and activities in Brussels and beyond

Mosto, an importer of wine from small Italian producers, has opened a pop-up shop in Etterbeek, which comes complete with wine tastings this month. The daughter of Italians who ran a deli and restaurant for decades, Alessandra Teston is a specialist in small-scale vineyards and has invited several winegrowers from her ancestral land to lead visitors through two-hour marathon tasting sessions. 20 November & 04 December, Chaussée de Wavre 331 (Etterbeek)

It’s a fabulous week at Passa Porta house of literature as Dutch journalist Persis Bekkering chats with Danish author Olga Ravn about her unusual sci-fi novel The Employees, shortlisted for the International Man Booker Prize. Another evening sees Belgian author Bart Moeyaert sitting with Sun-Mi Hwang, one of South Korea’s most popular writers, famed for The Hen Who Dreamed She Could Fly. Both of them are known for work that appeals to all generations. Olga Ravn: 18 November 20.00 (in English); Sun-mi Hwang: 17 November 20.00 (in English & Korean), Rue Antoine Dansaert 46

The Bridge, Brussels’ new English-language theatre, is hosting All Together Now, an evening of songs from popular musicals. It is part of a global event happening simultaneously across 40 countries to support theatres crippled by the coronavirus crisis. 14 November 17.00 & 19.30, Theatre du Vaudeville

Collage of performers at opening of Sounds Jazz Club

Sounds Jazz Club shut in March of 2020, never to re-open. Until now. Led by jazz musician Joachim Caffonnette, a group of journalists, festival organisers, music producers and other jazz enthusiasts rallied together to re-open one of Brussels’ most beloved music venues. Join the celebration as Sounds reopens this week. From 18 November, Rue de la Tulipe 28 (Ixelles)

Sure, all films are art, more or less, but the Brussels Art Film Festival features movies that are about art. Or artists, or sometimes musicians. Most of them have a link with Belgium. Check out, for instance, Brussels filmmaker Gwenaël Breës’s film In a Silent Way about his quest to meet the leadman (now deceased) of the synth-pop band Talk Talk, or Martin Margiela: In His Own Words about the enigmatic Belgian fashion designer. Until 14 November, across Brussels

Brussels-City hosts the first Brussels Artisanal Workshops, wherein artisans – from cheesemakers to screen printers – will open their doors to members of the public for a peek behind the scenes and the chance to get creative themselves. Make your own facial cream at Biocam, say, or your own chocolates at Laurent Gerbaud. 4-21 November, across central Brussels

A scene from Ali Chahrour's Told By My Mother

With its rich historical and cultural past, the capital of Lebanon speaks to our imagination. But it’s also a place of seemingly endless corruption, poverty and now the aftermath of a major disaster, the effects of which will be felt for decades. The festival Beirut Echoes: 72 Hours for Lebanon features debates, film and performances by Lebanese artists, including Told By My Mother (pictured) by Ali Chahrour. 12-15 November, Bozar, Rue Ravenstein 23

Youth theatre Bronks’s Export/Import Festival presents outstanding local and international performances of all kinds for all ages. There’s also a fringe programme and a lively festival café. Until 14 November, Rue du Marché aux Porcs

Jeroen Perceval is one of Belgium’s greatest actors, having risen to fame in gritty movies like Rundskop (Bullhead) and D’Ardennen. Taking those dark tales to heart, he now makes his directorial debut with Dealer, in which an actor befriends a 14-year-old drug runner, hoping to redeem himself and his years of addiction. Dealer opens in cinemas on 10 November.

En L’air Festival Cirque


Flying through the air here, defying gravity there … En L’air Festival Cirque will blow you away with its artistry and daring. As the name suggests, all the acts are up in the air, whether via trapeze, high wire, dangling ropes or some other contraption. For its 10th anniversary edition, a new festival space – Cabaret 10 – has been created at the PAMexpo in Court-Saint-Étienne. Ten companies will perform extraordinary acts there to create one big show that is delightful for all ages. There are two satellite performances as well, in Nivelles and in Louvain-la-Neuve. 13-23 November, across Walloon Brabant

The Next Festival crosses borders in more ways than one. Taking place in the inter-regional area of Kortrijk, Tournai and Lille, it hosts 38 stage productions from 18 countries that run the gamut from theatre to dance to concert/performance fusions. There are some top names here, such as French choreographer Boris Charmatz, Swiss stage director Milo Rau and Brussels’ own Meg Stuart. 12 November to 4 December

Antica Namur 2021

As the first art and antique fair in Belgium to open its doors since the pandemic, Antica Namur  (pictured) adopts a theme of emulation, exchange and discovery for its 44th edition. The prestigious international event attracts professional dealers, collectors and enthusiasts as well as simply the curious. More than 130 exhibitors put on a fine and eclectic display of art, antiques, paintings, jewellery, glass, porcelain, silverware and objects, with everything on view available for purchase. Modern and contemporary works also feature, while the fair’s atmosphere is reputed for its conviviality. Three independent experts are on hand daily to advise potential buyers. 13-21 November, Namur Expo, Avenue Sergent Vrithoff 2

Photos from top: Courtesy Mosto, courtesy Sounds, ©Candy Welz, courtesy En L’air Festival Cirque

Written by Lisa Bradshaw and Sarah Crew