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What’s on this week: 8-14 July

Les Estivales de la Woluwe
12:06 07/07/2022
Summer music and theatre – indoor and out - plus fun festivals and new exhibitions

Don’t miss the final three dates of the free festival Les Estivales de la Woluwe at the park’s kiosk. The concerts feature local musicians and are also designed for younger audiences. Mozart string music, a family show by the Alfama quartet and O!Boy vocal quartet are all on the programme. Until 16 July, Wednesday 16.30, Saturday 18.30, Roodebeek park (Woluwe-Saint-Lambert)

English Comedy Brussels

Fans of live stand-up can rely on English Comedy Brussels for a dose of summer laughs. Originally from London and now resident in Amsterdam, Adam Fields entertains international crowds with his British humour and animated style. Supporting him is Irish comedian Alex Byrne, who’s a regular on the European circuit. 14 July 20.00 (doors open 19.00), Aloft Hotel, Place Jean Rey (Etterbeek)

Musicorum (c)Aureum Saxophone Quartet

Fancy a free lunchtime concert in the Museum of Fine Arts? Musicorum delivers the goods again this summer with daily classical and jazz performances every weekday from 12.15 to 13.00. Formerly known as Festival des Minimes, this popular series in the museum’s largest auditorium, features local and international artists offering inspiring – and sometimes rollicking – shows. Until 26 August, 3 Rue de la Régence

(c)Andre Hunter, Unsplash

Flanders’ official holiday is 11 July – the day in 1302 that a militia of local farmers defeated the French cavalry – and it is marked with all sorts of activities. One of the biggest is Brussel Danst. Previously host to a big Dance Battle, this year it has branched out into themed walks and bike rides, concerts, circus and roller skating. But you can dance, too – on the roof of the Beursschouwburg. While you’re at it, your kids can create paintings on the walls of the centre’s stairwell using dance moves. 10-11 July, across Brussels

Palais Coudenbergh

What must Charles V have thought when he opened the crates of curiosities sent to him by explorers in Central Mexico some 500 years ago? Find out at Curiosa: Charles V, Dürer and the Treasure of the Aztecs. None of this treasure remains today, so this exhibition places other historical and scientific objects in the Coudenberg Palace’s underground ruins, painting a picture of how odd and wondrous they must have seemed to Westerners who had no clue as to their use or meaning. Contemporary artist Sabrina Montiel-Soto has added installations that examine the meaning of curiosities throughout the ages. Until 2 October, Place des Palais 7

Elisabeth musical - Festival Bruxellons

Proudly presenting 18 different French-language shows, one highlight of this summer’s theatrical pageant The Bruxellons Festival  is the musical masterpiece Elisabeth. It traces the fascinating life of a mythical empress who risks everything for freedom. The festival is a city summer favourite, offering a perfect evening out, complete with a pre-show buffet in a wonderful waterside setting. 11 July-27 September, Château du Karreveld (Molenbeek-Saint-Jean)



Shakespeare classic Roméo et Juliette  is this summer’s theatrical romp at Villers Abbey in Walloon Brabant. It’s Del Diffusions’s 36th francophone production at the historic site, an atmospheric outdoor spectacle in the romantic ruins of the Cistercian abbey. The famous love story by the English bard was chosen to celebrate the seasonal performance’s renaissance after two years of coronavirus disruption (previous show Le Petit Prince, pictured). 12 July-6 August 21.00, Rue de l’Abbaye 55, Villers-la-Ville

Basis Koksijde Seaking helicopter (RAF)

It’s open doors at Koksijde Air Base on the Belgian coast as the Belgian airforce offers a behind-the-scenes view of its work in Summer Pop-up Expo. Explore the famous Sea King helicopter (pictured), responsible for countless search and rescue missions. Or climb aboard a F-16 fighter jet and discover how the airforce uses new technology like AR. Until 12 August, 13.00-17.00, Robert Vandammestraat, Koksijde


Street theatre festival LaSemo returns to the magnificent grounds of Enghien park for a celebration of music and performance that promises to be 100% sustainable. Located in one of Europe’s most beautiful landscaped gardens, the three-day event offers contemporary and multidisciplinary circus shows, plus a variety of music, including Belgian rock band Girls in Hawaii. 8-10 July, Parc d’Enghien, Hainaut

©Estate Joris Ghekiere 2

Belgian artist Joris Ghekiere, who died in 2016, was well known for his paintings, both figurative and abstract. Over a period of 35 years, he squirreled away hundreds of drawings, sketches and watercolours in a cabinet in his studio, showing them to almost no one. Mu.Zee in Ostend is the first to stage a show of them and has specifically selected works Ghekiere created during a trip to Asia in 1990 and ’91. Until 27 November, Romestraat 11, Ostend


Gent Jazz is staged in the garden of the lovely Bijloke site. After a three-year delay, Sting is headlining the major jazz festival this summer, although it’s probably easier to snag tickets for the following: brilliant Israeli double-bass player Avishai Cohen (pictured), British rapper and slammer Kae Tempest and Danish queen of jazzy-poppy melancholy Agnes Obel, among  others. 7-17 July, Ghent

Les Ardentes

The number one rendezvous for fans of rap and hip-hop, Les Ardentes, invites Damso, Tyler, The Creator, ASAP Rocky, Orelsan, PNL, SCH, Burna Boy and Meghan Thee Stallion, among others. They will all be setting crowds alight with their performances, including festival star Stromae, taking to the stage on 10 July to belt out tracks from new album Multitude. 8-11 July, Rocourt, Liège


Festival de l’Été Mosan takes classical music fans on a journey from the 17th to the 20th century, set against a picturesque backdrop of beautiful old stone churches, priories and fortresses along the Meuse river. The summer festival offers chamber music and symphonic music; each concert is unique and chosen for the quality of its performers. 10 July-21 August, Meuse valley 


Written by Sarah Crew and Lisa Bradshaw