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The Best Autumn 2013 Art and Culture Events in Belgium
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The Best Autumn 2013 Art and Culture Events in Belgium

Picture of Andrew Kingsford-Smith
Updated: 9 February 2017
With Brussels being renowned as the Capital of Europe, it will come to no surprise that Belgium’s cultural calendar is jam packed with captivating and inspiring events. A country that is both proud of its traditions and renowned for its artistic innovations, discover ten of the best arts and culture events this autumn and winter in Belgium.

Music | Les Musicales de Beloeil

Beloeil: 7 September 2013

Set in the beautiful parks next to the awe-inspiring Beloeil Castle, Les Musicales de Beloeil has been named one of the biggest classical music events in the Belgian calendar. An open air concert attracting around 15,000 people, 2013 will see an exemplary line up including the National Orchestra of Lillie, Lebanese pianist and composer Abdel Rahman El Bacha, French pianist François Dumont, and Belgian saxophonist Steve Houben and his quartet. With a partnership with the Ecole de Cirque Bruxelles, there will also be circus performances combined with music throughout the day.

Design | Brussels Design September

Brussels: 7-29 September 2013

Scheduling a programme that features over 100 events, Brussels Design September lures design enthusiasts and professionals alike to one of the famous shopping destinations of the world. This festival sees Brussels become a design haven with exhibitions, award ceremonies, lectures, creative platforms, the presentation of new brands and much more. Focusing on both the best national and international practitioners and firms, Brussels Design September unites all design platforms including furniture, architecture, graphic and textile.

Food | Eat! Brussels

Brussels: 13-15 September 2013

Returning for its second edition, Eat! Brussels is a celebration of the incredible restaurant scene that this city holds. With scores of restaurants participating, the festival will serve not only French and Belgian classics but also cuisines from around the world, demonstrating the inspiring range of culinary experiences that reside in the Belgian capital. Serving smaller portions, visitors are invited to sample multiple cuisines in one meal, and the festival will also include demonstrations from experts and professionals.

Culture | Heritage Days

Brussels: 14 – 15 September 2013

Now in its 25th year, Heritage Days is a festival that reflects on the fascinating history of Brussels and celebrates the beautiful architecture and cultural landscape of the city. With a programme spread throughout 80 venues throughout, many historically significant buildings will be open to the public, and the festival aims to highlight the hidden gems of the city, including theatres, concert halls, cinemas, cafés, drinking holes and museums. With over 4500 buildings and sites protected in Brussels today, Heritage Days is a fantastic way to appreciate how much this city has to offer.

Film | Film Fest Gent

Ghent: 8-19 October 2013

Originally founded as a student’s film festival in 1974, Film Fest Gent has grown throughout the years, becoming one of Europe’s most prominent film events. Screening over 100 films in their programme, the event is most famous for its focus on film music and holds concerts by some of the most famous film composers in the world. A sure highlight of the festival is the World Soundtracks Award, the world’s most prestigious award for film soundtracks.

Arts | Europalia: India

Brussels: 4 October 2013 – 26 January 2014

A mass international arts festival held every other year, Europalia 2013 will celebrate Indian culture in Brussels, the heart of Europe. Founded in 1969, this historically rich festival will feature an all-encompassing programme including art exhibitions, film screening, literature events, music concerts, dance and theatre performances, and much more. Two highlight exhibitions include The Body in Indian Art and Indomania, from Rembrandt to the Beatles, both of which will take place at the iconic Bozar Centre for Fine Arts.

Film | Festival des Libertes

Brussels: 17 – 26 October 2013

Presenting a programme of international and unscreened documentaries, Festival des Libertes is a political and artistic event that focuses on human rights and the notion of freedom. On top of its screenings and international film competition, the festival also features theatre and dance performances, debates and talks, music concerts and exhibitions, combining together to form a multifaceted and enthralling programme of events. Intercultural and creative, Festival des Libertes aims to present an entertaining and eye-opening experience.

Performance | International Crossroads Festival

Antwerp: 14–17 November 2013

‘A meeting point where identities cross, overleap and follow their own path’, the International Crossroads Festival is a distinct creative event that focuses on the medium of visual theatre. Presenting productions from around the world, the programmed shows push the boundaries of the stage, and come as an eclectic mix of puppetry, mime, physical theatre, multimedia artworks and light spectacles.

Performance | Next Festival

Kortrijk: 15-30 November 2013

An international festival that presents experimental and cutting edge shows of theatre, dance and performance, Next focuses on new creations and large-scale productions. Organised by five Arthouse organisations from France and Belgium, the festival aims to present audience members with innovative theatrical experiences, as well as supporting the development of exciting new work, and the festival holds a particular focus on international collaboration.

Art | The Snow & Ice Sculpture Festival Bruges 2013

Bruges: 22 November 2013 – 5 January 2014

An epic display of ice and snow that promises to amaze and entertain, The Snow & Ice Sculpture Festival Bruges has been described as ‘the experience of a lifetime.’ Presenting intricate and detailed sculptures of people, creatures and inspiring scenes that are fused with stunning light displays, each year the festival focuses on a theme such as Disney, Lord of the Rings, The Hobbit and Harry Potter. For children there are also slippery slides made of ice to enjoy, while adults can indulge in chilled drinks served in ice glasses.

By Andrew Kingsford-Smith