What's on this week: 30 August


Pinocchio opera, Cincinnati Symphony Orchestra and pop-up exhibition Motel Moteur: our top picks for the week in Flanders and Brussels


The historic opera house De Munt has been closed to all but construction crews for two years, forcing the organisation to stage productions elsewhere in an Extra Muros programme. Now the Brussels venue is inaugurating its newly renovated opera house with the Belgian premiere of Flemish composer Philippe Boesmans’ Pinocchio.

Created in collaboration with French playwright and director Joël Pommerat for this year’s Aix-en-Provence Festival, the production is a darker take on the well-known tale, more in keeping with Carlo Collodi’s original than Walt Disney’s adaptation. Soprano Chloé Briot stars as the eponymous puppet. (In French with Dutch surtitles) 5-16 September, De Munt, Brussels

CLASSICAL: Cincinnati Symphony Orchestra

In the context of its international guest series, Antwerp Symphony Orchestra invites its Midwestern counterpart to perform works from the American classical songbook. The Cincinnati Symphony Orchestra and French conductor Louis Langrée (pictured) have curated a programme that spans film soundtracks and concert hall favourites. At the top of the bill is Leonard Bernstein’s award-winning soundtrack to On the Waterfront, followed by George Gershwin’s jazzy “An American in Paris” and Antonín Dvořák’s New World symphony, written during the famous Czech composer’s sojourn in New York. 5 September, 20.00, Queen Elisabeth Hall, Antwerp

VISUAL ARTS: Motel Moteur

Housed in a distinctly 1970s bungalow slated for demolition, this pop-up exhibition celebrates vintage modernist architecture and contemporary visual arts. The building was designed in 1972 by avant-garde architecture firm Konstrukto but fell into disrepair before being abandoned and eventually condemned to make way for a new apartment block. But first, a group of young Flemish artists have squatted the building and created site-specific works in its various retro-futurist spaces. The centrepiece is Floris Caes’ installation “Lex Humana”, a full-sized Florida alligator carcass bound and hanging from a noose in the villa’s swimming pool. 2-3 September, Rumbeke (Roeselare)

EVENT: The Living Room XL

For those who wonder what happened to the happening, the Living Room XL resurrects the multidisciplinary arts extravaganza pioneered by Andy Warhol in the 1960s. This contemporary happening takes place at Antwerp’s artist summer bar Bodem (pictured) and is organised by neighbouring Air Antwerpen. Participating artists are each given 30 minutes to install and present their work before ceding the space to another. It’s all one fluid, unfolding situation meant to be experienced in its 12-hour entirety. Over a dozen artists are on board, including Greek artist-in-residence Paky Vlassopoulou and Flemish video artist Wim Catrysse. Entry is free. 2 September, 14.00, BODEM, Antwerp

Other events that deserve your attention

Glenn Miller Orchestra: Big band hits from the 1930s and ’40s, featuring 16 musicians, singer Ellen Bliek and The Moonlight Serenades choir. 3 September 15.00, De Roma, Turnhoutsebaan 329, Antwerp

Patterns for (Re)cognition: Brussels-based American artist Vincent Meessen exposes a gap in the modern art historiography of Belgium and the Congo with modular structures, 16mm films, 19th-century objects and a sound installation set against the watercolours of late Congolese painter Tshela Tendu. Until 10 September, Bozar, Ravensteinstraat 23, Brussels

Navid Nuur: Funnelflux: Largest-ever solo show in Belgium by the Iranian artist based in The Hague, who calls his works “interimodules” to emphasise their temporary and correlated nature and avoid categorisation in installation, sculpture, painting or photography. Until 26 November, Be-Part, Westerlaan 17, Waregem (West Flanders)

Marni Jazz Festival: This 14th edition of the festival sees drummers taking centre stage, with a series of concerts by international and local groups. 7-16 September, De Vergniesstraat 25, Brussels

Ghent Sings Disney: Public sing-along to the greatest hits from the most beloved Disney films of all time. 2 & 9 September 20.30-22.00, Stadshal, Poeljemarkt, Ghent

Open VRT: The Flemish public broadcaster presents an evening for young, digitally oriented creatives, with talks by inspiring speakers, including actor and writer Geerard Van de Walle, London filmmaker Anna Ginsburg, Ghent blogger and baker Laura Verhulst and radio host Marthe Crab. 6 September 19.30-23.00, Vooruit, Sint-Pietersnieuwstraat 23, Ghent