May City Events in Berlin
May in Berlin is a busy flurry of film, dance and carnival with Carnival of Cultures, one of Berlin’s most brilliant events, topping the bill. Here are some other highlights which we think you might like:
1. Carnival of Cultures, city-wide – 17th – 20th May
One of the biggest events on the Berlin calendar is the Carnival of Cultures. Berlin is a cosmopolitan city and they love to celebrate different-ness. It’s a great excuse to get out in the sunshine, have a drink and enjoy the company of 4,500 performers. The main attraction will be the huge, colourful parade on 19th May which will wind through the streets starting at Hermannplatz and ends at Yorckstraße/Möckernstraße. The carnival is based mainly in the area of Kreuzberg around Blücherplatz which is only a short train ride away from Generator.
2. Open Air Cinema in Kreuzberg – From 4th May
With the warmer and drier weather comes the brilliant Open Air Cinema in Kreuzberg. It is only 6.50Euros to get in which we think is a real bargain. This is a great summer tradition in Berlin and there are several venues that set up huge screens – but we like the one at Kreuzberg as this is most likely to be showing an English language film. It is located in the back of the old Kunsthaus Bethanien arts centre which gives the whole thing a very bohemian feel. Remember to take your waterproofs (just in case!)
3. 19th Jewish Film Festival Berlin & Potsdam at Kino Arsenal Berlin – 29th April – 12th May
Another one for avid film buffs. The 19th Jewish Film Festival is showing an amazing collection of Jewish themed films at the Kino Arsenal in Berlin. All the films showing will be from home grown talent and international producers so there will be something to suit everything. We like the look of “David”, a story of boyhood friendships and what happens to them when family origins come to light. Or for something a bit more serious try “Six Million and One” and join David Fisher and his siblings as they search for evidence of what happened to their late father during the holocaust.
4. MyFest in Kreuzberg – 1st May
MyFest is translated as May Festival so be prepared for music, dancing, street fairs, food stalls and entertainers. Long has 1st May been associated with workers’ riots and general unrest in Berlin when there was the feeling something had to change. The first MyFest was in 2003 and introduced music instead of rioting and dancing instead of throwing bottles. The whole thing is organised by the locals in the area and this gives it something of a homey feel, like you are going to a family party in someone’s street rather than a planned and controlled council affair. The action will be centred on Oranienstrasse and Adalbertstrasse so head down there for some May Day fun.
5. Big 25km Run at Olympic Stadium – 5th May
For an amazing spectacle get a good spot to view the start of this race down outside the entrance to the Olympic Stadium. Thousands take part in this 25km race so you can’t miss them as they tour the city. The course passes some of the most iconic spots in Berlin like Brandenburg Gate, Unter den Linden, Gendarmenmarkt, Potsdamer Platz and the TV Tower. A bit of history for you the BIG 25km is Germany’s oldest big city road race and has become one its most high profile. So why not find a nice little cafe on the route and cheer on those runners whilst enjoying a coffee?
6. Dummy at Chameleon in the Hackescher Markt – All Month
How about some dance? Dummy, Variete 2.0 is a totally new experience from the mind of 22 year old director and artist extraordinaire, Eike von Stuckenbrok. If you are a fan of contemporary dance then you cannot miss this one. It is more like a show with sublime moves by the dancers set to music composed by the artists themselves. The music is amazing as it jumps from pure electro to heart rending classical. The dancers won’t be the only ones on their toes. The light show adds a fourth dimension to the dancers and creates an awe inspiring spectacle.
7. Lotus flower Lantern Festival at Garden of the World – 25th May
Enjoy a warm spring evening at the Garden of the World this May. As a celebration of Buddha’s birthday in May there will be a Lotus Lantern festival in the traditional Korean fashion. Come and see the beautiful lanterns as they are lit at dusk then laid in the water, in the Seoul Garden, to float away. The atmosphere at the park will be festive with music and food stalls with an Asian flavour. The Gardens of the World are in Marzahn, only about 40 minutes away on the S Bahn so you can hop on from the station right outside Generator.
8. BudZillus at Lido – 23rd May
If you fancy going to see some local talent then do not miss the BudZillus gig at Lido. They find it difficult to say exactly what genre their sound fits into, and perhaps this is no bad thing as you will certainly find something you like in their music. Described as an eclectic mix of swing, punk, jazz, polka, surf, reggae and oriental music they only started playing so they could perform at a friend’s wedding. BudZillas are now on their second album and still going strong. So, if you like you music a little off-beat as well as off the beaten track, this is the gig for you.
9. The Whole Earth Exhibition at Haus der Kulturen der Welt – All Month
The Whole Earth exhibition at the House of Cultures in the Tiergarten will blow your mind from a great height. Towards the end of the 60‘s the first images of the Earth were taken from the outside and these changed global culture forever. The stark “mushroom cloud” image that had dominated the 50’s was replaced with the “Blue Marble” image and brought about a new idea of “one Earth”. Go and see how the world was changed by the image of the “Blue Planet” and see the beginnings of modern globalization.
10. Berlin Summer Rave at Tempelhof – 25th May
And now to finish with a bang! The Berlin Summer Rave is one of those events that seems like it has been going forever but is only in its fourth year. Tempelhof is the ideal venue and will have three dance floors, and a huge food court, to keep your energy levels up. The line up is stellar and includes Westbam, Aka Aka Feat. Thalstroem, Vitalic and Mousse T. So if clubbing is your thing then do not miss the ultimate house party.