Recent & upcoming: ArTX exhibition, ping pong, politics, art, beer, jazz, choral music, sand, kites…oh, and Karneval!

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The event scene in Aalborg and its surroundings is definitely starting to heat up. You can feel the anticipation of summer in the air, even if that air is cooler than normal for this time of year. The biggest event this weekend is, of course, the annual Aalborg Karneval, but there are a lot of other interesting activities and happenings leading up to and following the parade and related festivities. Check them out below! (I have added a few things and updated the Events Calendar since posting this afternoon.)

art&techAAU’s Art & Technology program hosts spring exhibition today and tomorrow

AAU’s Art & Technology program will host its annual spring exhibition today, Thursday, 21 May from 16:00 to 22:00 and tomorrow, Friday, 22 May from 12:00 to 18:00 at AAU’s Create building, Rendsburggade 14 (on the waterfront.) I went to it in 2013 and enjoyed seeing how students linked art and technology in fascinating ways. It’s free of charge and worth checking out!


pingpongPing pong party at 1000Fryd tonight

They do it in elementary schools in Klarup, they do it in DUS/SFO in Gug, they do it in fancy clubs in Berlin, and tonight, Thursday, 21 May they are doing it at 1000Fryd: ping pong. Come and play with other people who enjoy a good game of hitting a small round ball across the table. Bring your own paddle if you have one; otherwise, just show up! From 19:00 – free entry. More info here.


Italian Days at Gammel Torv through Saturday

In case you haven’t been by lately, Gammel Torv is filled with Italian specialties this week and through Saturday, 23 May thanks to food exhibition Gusto Buon Gusto, which has moved in and converted the space into an Italian market. Come enjoy tastings of wines, olive oils, different types of cooked meats, etc. and the cozy ambiance, and be inspired by the delicious Italian ingredients. From 10:00 to 18:00 all three days. Admission: Free. More information here.


Europe and the Left – creating Political Alternatives? – a debate at Studenterhuset tomorrow

Here is the official blurb for a political debate tomorrow, Friday, 22 May at Studenterhuset from 14:00. A timely event, given the impending (but still unannounced) election in Denmark and the debt crisis in Greece. ‘Although the weakness of the neoliberal system became evident after the financial crisis of 2007-8, the politics of austerity have deepened the same model. The gradual refusal of the centre-left, particularly the social democratic parties, has opened up in Europe a political space for redefining leftist values and their relevance in Europe. We invite three politicians/academics from different countries, Greece (Syriza), Slovenia (Initiative for Democratic Socialism), and Denmark (The Red-Green Alliance) to discuss the role of the left and its capacity for offering alternatives to the existing system.’ Free entry – all are invited! More info available here.
Marina Prentoulis – Member of Syriza, Senior Lecturer, University of East Anglia
Anej Korsika – Member of Initiative for Democratic Socialism, Institute for Labour Studies in Ljubljana
Nikolaj Villumsen – Member of the Danish Parliament for Enhedslisten / The Red-Green Alliance


vaegVÆG Contemporary Art Gallery opens new exhibition tomorrow – ‘Not Normal?’

You are cordially invited to the opening of the new summer exhibition at VÆG tomorrow, Friday, 22 May from 16:00 to 19:00. We are pleased to present three young Danish artists who like to tell stories about what makes us human. Are we normal human beings? Or are we just trying to behave like that? We all carry something within us that doesn’t operate fully by the book. The artists – Iris Bendt-Hedal (The Stories We Tell When No One’s Around – paintings), Daniel Nygaard-Mortensen (Closure – drawings), and Lea Nielsen (Circus in Town – ceramics) – will be present. Entry is free. The exhibition is on view until 27 June. More information available on VÆG’s website.


Basement Beer Bar teams up with Thisted Brewery to bring you Limfjord Porter – tomorrow!

The now legendary Limfjord Porter from Thisted Brewery has been fermenting the past two months in Stauning rye whiskey barrels. This is the first time ever that this amazing porter has been made as a special edition! And amounts are very limited… We’ve got two kegs of 19 liters each, and tomorrow, Friday, 22 May from 20:00 we’ll open one for our customers at Basement Beer Bar. This special event is a collaboration between Thisted Brewery and Basement Beer Bar, which we hope will send other exciting goodies our way in the future. Thanks to brewmaster Antoni Aagaard Madsen from Thisted Brewery for embarking on this project with us. More info on our FB page here.


Sæby Jazz Festival this weekend!

If you’re into jazz and would enjoy a trip to the pretty town of Sæby on the east coast, then the Sæby Jazz Festival is for you! The festival, whose theme is ‘Jazz and Fish,’ starts Friday, 22 May and goes through Sunday, 24 May. A program with times and music groups’ names is available here, as are many other details about the event. We made our first trip up to Sæby a few weeks ago and were charmed. Yet another nice get-away from Karneval madness!


blokhus_sand_sculpturesAnnual Blokhus International Sand Sculpture Festival and Kite Festival this weekend!

H.C. Andersen’s Fairy Tales is the theme of this year’s Blokhus International Sand Sculpture Festival. The festival opens at 11:00 this Saturday, 23 May and runs through 25 October. Hours vary during the five month period but ticket prices are the same throughout: 50 kr. per adult and 25 kr. per child between 3 and 12. There is also a playground on site for active kids. Sculptors from around the world have created a whole host of images depicting characters and scenes out of Andersen’s stories. Click here for more info, including opening hours, and a video of coverage of last year’s festival. Guess the fairy tale character in the photo to the right! 🙂

dragefestivalWhile you’re in Blokhus for the sand sculpture festiveal, check out the Kite Festival, too! Saturday and Sunday, 23-24 May there will be giant, majestic and cool kites flying in the sky from Blokhus beach. Looks very cool. And since Hirtshals has cancelled their annual Kite Festival (haven’t found out why or whether it will be rescheduled), this is the place to go this year if you love kites! Get the program and find out more here or here.


Focus on elephants at Aalborg Zoo this weekend

It’s a holiday weekend (again!) and this time Aalborg Zoo is focusing on elephants and conservation projects in South Africa, to which Aalborg Zoo is committed. Trans Frontier Africa works toward the conservation of wild African elephants and Black Mamba is a group of women who make great efforts in the fight against poaching of, especially, rhinos and elephants. Come and learn more about these giant and majestic mammals this weekend! Find out more here.


Karneval Parade this Saturday (as if you didn’t know) 

The annual Aalborg Karneval hits the streets this Saturday, 23 May from 10:00 until ?!?!?. Starting at three separate locations (Nørresundby, Østerbro, and Haraldslund) at three different times (10:00, 11:00, and 12:00, respectively), parade participants will converge on Vesterbro and march up to Kildeparken where they will continue to make merry…which generally involves copious amounts of alcohol. Around 60,000 people are expected to take part, while officials estimate 100,000 spectators will be on hand to witness the event. The theme of this year’s carnival is Taboo, which should inspire a lot of interesting costumes, I would think. Billed as Northern Europe’s largest carnival, this is an event many, if not most, Aalborg residents would describe as ‘one to be missed’, unless, of course, you are participating. For those who don’t have an armband yet but would like to purchase one in order to enter Kildeparken for post-parade festivities, online sales are now closed but you can buy them up to and on the day itself at Friis, karneval shops, and Billig Billy for 125 kr. For more info about the parade, where the potties are, Kildeparken party, and more, visit the official website.

Oh – and the fun doesn’t end in Kildeparken! The Karneval After Dark party, which happens at the old Aalborg Aquavit factory (Strandvejen 22), allows you to continue in party mode until 5am Sunday. Starting at 22:00 on Saturday night, all those who still have lots of karneval spirit to share can meet up for free (if you have the karneval armband) or pay 200 kr. at the door to enjoy music, dancing, and drink sponsored by Voodoo Energy and Aalborg Karneval. Max 3,500 people so there could be a lot of competition to get in if 60,000 people really participate in the parade and Kildeparken party. You must be 18+ to enter. More info available here.


Car trunk market this Sunday at Aalborg Storcenter

Don’t forget the Bagagerumsmarked Aalborg at Aalborg Storcenter, which takes place Sunday, 24 May and Sunday, 7 June. The sale is from 9:15 to 15:15 and it takes place in Aalborg Storcenter’s parking lot.


Come hear Israeli jazz and folk music with the Eyal Lovett Trio at Klaverstemmeren next Monday

At 19:30 next Monday, 25 May, Israeli born pianist-composer Eyal Lovett, bass player Kenneth Knudsen, and drummer Aidan will entertain an audience with a wide range of music at Klaverstemmeren (Vesterbro 58). Although classically trained, he is deeply immersed in the jazz tradition, as well as in the diverse music located in Israel and the Middle East. “Lovett showcases his delicate touch on the piano with a tenderly heart-aching song that features the pianist ability for story telling” – All About Jazz. Eyal’s debut album – “Let Go” was released in November 2013 to critical acclaim. The music is a blend of original compositions, jazz standards and israeli music. You can read more about Lovett here; entry is free. Beer and wine will be served.


Choir Meet-up (Kortræf) next Tuesday at Huset

During the month of May, Huset has hosted a weekly event every Tuesday called Kortræf (Choir Meet-up, essentially). Various choral groups from all over North Jutland have met to entertain themselves, each other, and audience members from the stage on Huset’s lovely patio. Somehow I missed the first three weeks of this; luckily, a friend (and choir member) alerted me to the last of these next Tuesday, 26 May. Starting with a warm-up and sing-a-long at 17:30, you can then enjoy the excellent barbecue buffet in the Huset Cafe at 18:00 and then hear the following choirs from 18.30: Svenstrup-koret, Voices in Modern, Mayor’s Musicke, and Vokalisterne. If the weather doesn’t cooperate, the event will move indoors in whole or in part…Entry is free (minus the meal, which you can choose to partake in or not.)


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