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What to do in Amsterdam

With its world-class museums, unique festivals, international comedy, wealth of live music, laid-back bars and diverse cuisine, there’s never a shortage of things to do in Amsterdam. So browse these inspirational ‘language no problem’ suggestions for visitors to ISE 2013 and make the most of all that’s happening throughout the city!

There’s plenty of things to visit, enjoy and explore in Amseterdam during the ISE 2013 exhibition. Here are just some of the things the city has to offer:

Boom Chicago (Comedy)
Comedy shows, dinner and drinks… Boom Chicago has it all

Boom Chicago is an American comedy troupe that’s renowned for its English-language comedy, theatrical shows, improvisation, stand-up and burlesque. Razor-sharp improvised comedy from an international perspective, plus good food and tasty cocktails, has long been their recipe for success. In 2013 Boom Chicago celebrates its 20th anniversary, with their comic turns now housed at the Rozentheater – an old-fashioned former cinema and variety club built in the 1920s.

Wed 30 Jan 20:00 | Shot of Improv
An exciting, fast-paced and all-improvised party | €14

Thu 31 Jan 20:00 | Reality Check
Boom Chicago’s newest comedy collection attacks the ridiculousness of modern life, poking fun at the good, the bad and the just plain silly | €22

Rozengracht 117
Tram 10-13-14-17, stop Marnixstraat/Rozengracht

Amsterdam Museum (Museum)
A rich collection of art, objects and artefacts that tell the story of Amsterdam

The Amsterdam Museum details the compelling story of Amsterdam, from its growth and glory days through to the present. In this 1,000-year-old city of waterways, it’s the spirit of enterprise, creativity, civic values and freedom that counts most.

until 31 Dec | Amsterdam DNA
The exhibition Amsterdam DNA aims to tell the story of the city. Intended as a three-dimensional travel guide, this informative multimedia presentation takes the visitor on a 45-minute historical tour of Amsterdam.

until 31 Aug | The Golden Age
The 17th century is a historical period that continues to stimulate the imagination and is also regarded as the main basis on which the modern state of the Netherlands is founded. This exhibition tells the story of the Dutch Golden Age in stirring fashion, with the latest multimedia techniques and a treasure trove of world-class pieces by Rembrandt, Pieter de Hooch, Maerten de Vos, Dirck Hals and Melchior d’Hondecoeter.

until 12 May | Johan & Me
An exhibition bursting with pictures and stories from people who have had an encounter with Dutch football legend Johan Cruyff.

Opening hours: Daily 10:00-17:00 | €10
Kalverstraat 92 and Sint Luciënsteeg 27
Tram 1-2-4-5-9-14-16-24-25, stop Spui

EYE Filmmuseum (Film and Exhibition)
Famed film institute housed in an architectural masterpiece

The EYE Filmmuseum is home to an internationally renowned collection of films covering the whole history of cinema, from the very first silent movies to the latest contemporary digital productions. It recently moved into a brand new architectural masterpiece, located directly across the River IJ from Amsterdam Central Station. As well as its dedicated exhibitions, visitors can catch new film releases, cinematic classics and other special film events.

until 17 Mar | Oskar Fischinger (1900-1967)

The institute is presently hosting a major exhibition exploring the works of Oskar Fischinger, a pioneer of animation and abstract cinema. This German avant-garde filmmaker made short films that were highly influential in the development of animated film, music videos and computer graphics. Here you can experience many of his films and some original, never previously displayed animation drawings that Fischinger used to create his films. Paintings, notated musical scores and personal documents supplement these items. The exhibition also includes rarely shown fragments of Fischinger’s experiments from the 1920s to ‘40s, which have now been restored.

Opening hours: Daily 11:00-18:00 (various times for film screenings) | €8
IJpromenade 1
Buiksloterweg ferry (behind Amsterdam Central Station, the middle ferry)

Concertgebouw (Music)
One of the world’s most renowned concert halls (pictured)

A visit to one of the world’s best-known concert halls will be an experience you’ll never forget. Renowned for its exceptional acoustics, the Concertgebouw is celebrating its 125th birthday throughout 2013. Visit this grand building and encounter the joys of an inspirational concert featuring the world’s best musicians, orchestras and conductors.

Tues 29 Jan 20:15 | Kavakos, Pace & Beethoven
Leonidas Kavakos, one of the hottest violin soloists on the circuit, teams up with pianist Enrico Pace for an evening of Beethoven sonatas | €45

Wed 30 Jan 20:15 | Collegium Vocale Gent
Philippe Herreweghe, founder and conductor of the world famous Collegium Vocale Gent, selects four of his favourite Bach cantatas | €35-€79.50

Wed 30 & Thur 31 Jan 21:00 | Liza Ferschtman and Sax & Stix
The Dutch violinist collaborates with the sax and percussion duo | €19

Thu 31 Jan 20:15 | Joseph Calleja
This Maltese vocalist has already been dubbed the ‘tenor for the 21st century’. Tonight he’s singing arias by Verdi and Puccini | €24.30-€80.10

Concertgebouwplein 10
Tram 2-3-5-12-16, stop Museumplein

Foam (Exhibition)
All about photography

Foam Amsterdam is a home to photography in all its forms: independent, documentary, applied, historical and contemporary. A museum of international stature, it hosts large exhibitions of established international photographers, as well as exhibiting work by up-and-coming talents from home and abroad.

until 3 Apr | Primrose, Russian Colour Photography
A retrospective of the various attempts in Russia to produce coloured photographic images, showing works by renowned artists such as Ivan Shagin, Dmitry Baltermants, Sergey Prokudin-Gorski, Alexander Rodchenko and Boris Mikhailov.

until 20 Mar | Jan Hoek – Me & My Models
In this exhibition and accompanying film, the Dutch photographer explores the nasty, funny, painful or touching things that can happen when photographing people.

until 17 Mar | Fashion &Foam
In this unique combination of photography and fashion, &Foam presents the MOAM project, where big names and talented newcomers in photography and design come together in one exhibition. This exhibition is hosted in Foam’s gallery at Vijzelstraat 78.

until 17 Mar | WassinkLundgren – One Group Show
The first major solo exhibition by Dutch photography duo WassinkLundgren, presenting a broad overview of their work.

Opening hours: Sat-Wed 10:00-18:00, Thu-Fri 10:00-21:00 | €10
Keizersgracht 609
Tram 16-24-25, stop Keizersgracht

Bimhuis (Music)
Amsterdam’s jazz hall is a second home to the world’s best players

The Bimhuis places Amsterdam firmly on the map as a leading European jazz city. Its roots date back to the early ’70s, when local musos founded a new home for the local improv jazz scene in a former furniture salesroom. These days it shares a more bespoke performance space with the Muziekgebouw aan ‘t IJ, looking out over the River IJ. With 150 shows per year, it’s not only the home of Dutch jazz, but also a port of call for the world’s best players.

Wed 30 Jan 20:30 | Guillermo Klein
This Argentinean-Spanish all-rounder owes his reputation to attractive compositions that have much in common with the work of Piazzolla and Wayne Shorter. His current crop of collaborators includes pianist Aaron Goldberg and saxophonists Miguel Zénon, and Chris Cheek | €17-€20

Wed 31 Jan 20:30 | Jazz Orchestra of the Concertgebouw
Led by Henk Meutgeert, this 18-piece big band represents the very best of the Dutch jazz scene | €17-€20

Piet Heinkade 3
Tram 26, stop Muziekgebouw/Bimhuis

Paradiso (Music)
Amsterdam’s unique pop temple

Paradiso is a world-famous music venue near Leidseplein. Situated in a former church, it has been a reverential centre for pop culture since the 1960s, with its atmospheric stained glass windows remaining high above the stage. Today, after hosting thousands of concerts, the pop venue is renowned to artists and music fans from across the globe.

Mon 28 Jan 20:00 | Sarah Ferri
Vocal folk, jazz and pop from half-Belgian, half-Italian singer-songwriter Sarah Ferri, who is influenced heavily by ’70s folk songs and upbeat gypsy jazz from the ’50s | €8

Tue 29 Jan 20:00 | Richard Walters
British singer-songwriter | €7

Wed 30 Jan 20:00 | The Soft Pack
Energetic indie rock from the Los Angeles-based band, who released their second album, titled Strapped, in September last year | €11

Thu 31 Jan 20:30 | June Noa
June Noa specialises in soul with a touch of funk and pop | €12.50

Fri 1 Feb 19:30 | Conor Oberst
Acclaimed American singer-songwriter Conor Oberst began his recording career at the tender age of 13 and has since produced an enormous amount of material as Bright Eyes, Monsters of Folk and various other projects | €25

Weteringschans 6-8
Tram 1-2-5-7-10, stop Leidseplein

Stedelijk Museum (Museum)
Modern art masters and stars of the future

The world renowned modern art collection of the Stedelijk Museum is now on display in its beautifully restored historical building, with fixed spots for highlights such as paintings by Russian geometric abstract artist Kazimir Malevich, ‘The Beanery’ by Edward Kienholz and works by Willem de Kooning and Andy Warhol. Its spectacular new building, designed by Benthem Crouwel, also offers plenty of space for cutting-edge exhibitions.

until 1 Apr | Mike Kelley (1954-2012)
A retrospective of work by American artist Mike Kelley, widely considered as one of the most influential artists of our time. A multimedia phenomenon, Kelley was artistically active from the late 1970s through to his untimely death early in 2012. He worked with a wide array of media during his 35-year career including textile banners, drawings, photographs and found objects, adeptly blending (and commentating on) high and low culture.

Opening hours: Fri-Wed 10:00-18:00, Thur 10:00-22:00 | €17.50
Paulus Potterstraat 13
Tram 2-5, stop Van Baerlestraat and Tram 3-12-16-24, stop Museumplein

De Appel (Museum)
A leading contemporary art platform

De Appel is an internationally oriented arts centre in Amsterdam. Since 1975 it has served as a leading platform for the research and presentation of contemporary art, regularly providing a varied programme of exhibitions and performances by visual artists, choreographers and theatre directors, as well as presentations and debates to bring the latest developments in the arts to a wide audience.

until 31 Mar | Exhibition Zarina Bhimji and Dirk Braeckman
De Appel presents solo projects by the Belgian photographer/filmmaker Dirk Braeckman and the British artist Zarina Bhimji. Braeckman’s sensitive, large-scale photographs in shades of grey do not tell elaborate stories but are charged with atmosphere, which, in the words of the author Luc Sante, makes them “tick away like time bombs”. The suggestive force and narrative potential of images are just as essential for Bhimji.

Opening hours: Tues-Sat 12:00-20:00, Sun 12:00-18:00 | €7
Prins Hendrikkade 142
A short walk form Central Station

De Brakke Grond (Theatre/Art/Design)
A touch of Flanders

Flemish Arts Centre de Brakke Grond presents the latest contemporary art productions from Flanders, with a programme including theatre, dance, visual art, literature, music, film, new media and performance arts. De Brakke Grond places strong emphasis on innovation, cross-over, interdisciplinarity and artistic daring; aiming to encourage and maintain the dialogue between genres, disciplines and communities.

Until 3 Mar | An-Sofie Kesteleyn, A lamb named Beauty
De Brakke Grond presents A lamb named Beauty, the first solo exhibition in the Netherlands by young Flemish photographer An-Sofie Kesteleyn. Kesteleyn has been following red-haired twins Gwendolyn and Kimberly since 2007. She gives a candid impression of how the twins take care of each other, and the many animals they have gathered around them. The twins seem to live in a domain all of their own, taking strength from their love for one another.

Openinghours: Mon-Fri 11:00–18:00, Sat-Sun: 13:00-18:00 | Free
Nes 45
Tram 4-9-14-16-24-25, stop Rokin