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Discover Benelux  |  Leeuwarden-Friesland  |  European Capital of Culture

of Europe with a warm welcome to our region,” says Klarenbeek. One spectacular contribution will be the giant puppets, operated by dozens of people, from the Royal de Luxe street theatre. You can walk alongside these marvels as they explore, eat and even breathe. “The impact of the 15metre-high giants in the small streets of Leeuwarden will be extraordinary,” says Woolgar. Other spectacles include the Tall Ships Race, beginning in Sunderland and ending in Harlingen, and the first TAFISA European Sports For All Games event where around 20 countries will demonstrate their cultural sports including Friesland’s canal vaulting pastime ‘fierljeppen’. The canal route connecting Friesland’s 11 cities, which was once the stage of an ice-skating race, has inspired the 11Fountains project, bringing together international artists to create permanent installations and a new cultural route. “Each of the fountains reflects the history of the cities,” says Woolgar. “Each of those artists, through their contact with the local community, has come up with a fountain design that says something about the city.” Other international artist exhibitions include LÛD International Sound-Art in Rijsterbos and the epic Colorfield Performance where 400 artists will create epic art together.

international community will be raised at Silence of the Bees, a project stressing an environmental issue affecting us all. As Westerhof explains: “The only way to find a future for our city, for our region, for our country and also for Europe is that people stand together and work bottom up for new solutions for the future.” It is not only the programme of LeeuwardenFriesland 2018 that seems endless, but also the voices and passion of those who have brought it to life. “This is a different

type of programme and the reason is because of the sense of community, it’s a bottom-up initiative,” says Woolgar. “It’s programmed literally by thousands of people throughout the province.” It is no doubt impossible to imagine that this province will not live up to its year-long title and provide the light needed to inspire the world. This is merely a taste of what is to come at Leeuwarden-Friesland 2018. Discover more events at www.2018.nl

The Giants of Royal de Luxe. Photo: © Serge Koutchinsky, Leeuwarden-Friesland 2018.

Leeuwarden-Friesland 2018 is not short on international musicians either. Britain’s The Subways will perform at the Welcome to the Village festival, while Europe’s youngest generation of musicians will perform over 1,000 concerts as part of At the Watergate. All tastes are accommodated, like Opera Spanga’s production of Verdi’s Aida, or the Oranjewoud Festival’s programme of classical music. Even international filmmakers will participate with Sailing on the Grass, where directors explore the Frisian landscape and how the locals live together. At Potatoes Go Wild, you can also discover the 160-year-old agricultural partnership of cultivating potatoes between Friesland’s Het Bildt and Malta. Their charming exchange of poetry attached to potato bags will also be on display. Furthermore, awareness of a disappearing

The Giants of Royal de Luxe. Photo: © Serge Koutchinsky, Leeuwarden-Friesland 2018.

Issue 50  |  February 2018  |  79

Profile for Scan Client Publishing

Discover Benelux, Issue 50, February 2018  

Promoting Belgium, The Netherlands and Luxembourg.

Discover Benelux, Issue 50, February 2018  

Promoting Belgium, The Netherlands and Luxembourg.

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