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Overview of Amsterdam Dance Event 2012 by The LoneRaver

When in late October, every year the Amsterdam Dance Event, the world's leading electronic music conference takes place for 5 days. This makes Amsterdam the center of the electronic music world to party and talk business in October. This topic deserves When in Amsterdam to invite a specialist. We warmly welcome our first guest blogger The LoneRaver to share insight on this global event.

Right then my fellow Raver's this is the week we've been waiting for, the time to start getting overly excited about ADE has arrived. If electronic music is your thing then your probably well aware of the ensuing madness that is about to take over this fine city of ours but if you are an outsider looking in then you may be wondering what all the fuss is about and why there is so many yellow and black flags fluttering away in the rain. So for those wondering I'll let you in on a little secret, come closer, it's the world's biggest club festival for electronic music.

Every year the festival seams to get bigger and better with more innovative venues being utilized, a wider range of styles represented and a growing number of international visitors streaming into the arrival lounge's of Schipol and Centraal station. It's now a can't miss opportunity for some of the worlds greatest parties to display the creativity and vision that makes them such a hit in their respective homelands with showcase's from Secretsundaze, Awakenings, Ministry of Sound and what appear's at first glance to be an after hours a day from Electric Deluxe.

Photo Credit: Martijn Klijmij

The whole shebang officially kicks off on the Wednesday but that won't stop the sneaky folk at Studio 80 from getting in there first with a tuesday night "Saved" special featuring NIcFanciulli, Robert Dietz and Subb-An, However the starters gun officially fires on Wednesday and I'll be heading out for early drinks and beats at the Cue Bar for the Sleepwalkers showcase before making the short bike ride to Trouw for, in my opinion, the venues highlight night of ADE. Seth Troxler and Makam are guest's in the main room with Sandrien inviting Ben Klock to deliver the techno downstairs in De Verdieping. Other highlights include Carl Craig, Paul Woolford and Nina Kravitz at MC Theater and Josh Wink and Steve Bug at Chicago Social Club.

Thursday brings the ADE debut of "The Amsterdam Convention Factory" as a venue, this vast former Stork factory should prove the perfect place for Ame, Extrawelt and Oliver Koletzki to perform live deep house music in a suitably industrial venue. Elsewhere On and On go for a 10 hour special at the Transformatorhuis in Westerparc with special guest Shifted while Amsterdam Drum and Bass institute Cheeky Monday's throw a party to launch their new label of the same name with special guest Nicky Blackmarket amply supported by mainstays Sinistah and Insom to name a few.

One of the first thing's I noticed when perusing the program was that the afterhour parties that have been notable in their absence in previous years are well represented from the friday morning through to monday giving it a truly 24 hour vibe that the event has previously lacked and the first of these we will take in is when newly opened Club Lite invites Berlin's Frucht Records for a special all day session starting from 6am till mid afternoon. Later in the day the Click crew put together a 12 hour special at the Westerunie complex with The Advent, Slam, Monika Kruse and local legend Steve Rachmad the pick of the bunch. Staying in the west, Elastic Artist's present's a UK special with Julio Bashmore, Joy Orbison and Lone taking to the controls in the MC Theater.

Photo Credit: Betribes

Friday's highlight comes in the form of the "Next Mondays Hangover's" ADE special. Known for picking unusual venues and locations for their parties the NMH crew do not disappoint on this front again as "Het Sieraad" is chosen to host a Mobilee special. While living a mere 200 meter's away I had no idea this place had the potential to be used for a rave up but upon closer inspection it almost shout's out party and with Pan-Pot, Anja Schneider, Sebo K and a live set from Rodriguez JR this will be one to remember.

Saturday is the traditional big night in clubland and with no fewer than 70 different events taking place all over the city this serves as proof of that and its gonna be very hard to choose where to dance the night away. So to continue the loose theme of unusual venues that appears to have developed in this piece we start the night off in the former squat bar Cafe't Schuim for Delicious Grooves meets Cosmic Disco before heading east to get down at Roest, a former gasworks building, for the Weerloos Label night were Santa Ballistol offer something very different from the usual with a live performance of jazz infused techno with live poetry providing the vocals for this experimental live ensemble. Staying east Studio K host's VBX goes Berlin Underground with Margaret Dygas, Vera and Carlos Valdes.

Later on we head back into the city to take in Schmeck Pony's ADE special at Club Home as they attempt a 16 hour marathon starting at 11pm and taking us nicely into Sunday with a genuine international line up including Christian Smith, Mauro Picotto, Dosem and Amsterdam's very own Bart Sklls.

Photo Credit: Emma Pierre

So Sunday is upon us and as we try to shake of the dreaded feeling that the fun is almost over the festival continues to throw up some huge names with Detroit Legend Jeff Mills taking his familiar position behind the decks and R-909 at OT301 for a 6 hour set, Speedy J and Sandwell District performing at the Melkweg followed by Soul Clap taking on Wolf and Lamb later in the day. However the final destination for us on this journey through ADE is back to Studio 80 for secretsundaze first full blown ADE Party. After occupying Studio 80's back room last year the London main stay takes over the whole place this time round and invites Motor City Drum Ensemble, Delano Smith, Brawther and Patrice Scott to join mainstays Giles Smith and James Priestly for one final blow out that promise's to be up there with very best of the last few days.

So that rounds up my take on this years ADE but I can't get across the scale of the event in 1000 woods so head to for full listings and details about ticket's times etc.

Have a good one and if I have one top tip it's book your tickets in advance, especially for the after hours

The LoneRaver

Photo credit: Roy Laros

Part of this article was published in Amsterdo's October edition.

When in Amsterdam....enjoy!

When in Amsterdam... - Blogged

Heart Day (Hartjesdag) 2012 on Amsterdam's Zeedijk

When in Amsterdam....the third weekend of August is the Hartjesdag Festival on Amsterdam's Zeedijk. The modern festival began in 1997 to show the wonders of one of Amsterdam's oldest streets.

Amsterdam's Zeedijk Hartjesdag 2012

Hartjesdag was originally Hertjesday (Deer Day) and dates back to the Middle Ages when hunting deer was allowed by normal people. Somewhere along the way it turned into a cross dressing festival.

Hartjesdag Zeedijk. Painter Johan Braakensiek (1858-1940) 

During World War 2 the festival was banned by the occupying Nazi Germans. Nevertheless, Zeedijk became a refuge for those persecuted by the Nazis. Officers of the occupying forces were not allowed to frequent the street as it was seen as beneath them.

Strolling the promenade. Zeedijk Amsterdam 2012

Today, Zeedijk, Amsterdam's medieval sea wall, is a diverse street that includes Amsterdam's Chinatown and oldest Gay bar. The street also contains one of the only wooden facade buildings in the city.

Hartjesday is a weird and wonderful festival that reminds people Amsterdam is a livable city of many small neighborhoods. Highlights of the Festival are always the cross dressing competition, choirs and the opera.

When in Amsterdam....enjoy!

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Amsterdam Canal Festival (Grachtenfestival) 2012 Begins

When in Amsterdam....the Canal (Grachten) Festival is held for one week in August. The festival celebrates Amsterdam as the cultural capital of the Netherlands. 15 years ago the original aim was to create a 3 day platform for young classical musicians and incorporate cultural activities into the landscape of Amsterdam.

This year the festival is 10 days of classical music, dance and theatrical performance. There are both paid and free performances during the event. The festival is concentrated around the Klovinersburgwal but events are spread throughout the city.

Today we caught violinist Lonneke van Straalen and cellist Jan-Bastiaan Neven play a suite by Stravinsky.

Violinist Lonneke van Straalen and cellist Jan-Bastiaan Neven
We also saw clarinetist Sergio Hamersla play a selection of music by Fuchs.

Clarinetist Sergio Hamerslag 

The Canal Festival culminates in a grand concert on the World Heritage listed Prinsengracht with the Westerkerk as a backdrop. The below Youtube clip shows the concluding concert to the 2011 Canal festival.

Keep posted for more highlights.

When in Amsterdam...enjoy!

When in Amsterdam... - Blogged

August in Amsterdam: festival month

When in Amsterdam....August is festival month. Every day of August there is something exciting and new.

The first week of August Amsterdam is pink and proud. Amsterdam has always been a city of tolerance and the gay and lesbians are free to be themselves in the city. Once a year this freedom is celebrated. The annual Pride festival culminates in the canal parade. This year on August 4th for the 17th time 80 boats will float through the canals and finish at City Hall. Gain a good vantage point along the Prinsengracht or the Amstel. Music stages are located at the City Hall, Rembrandtplein and also Zeedijk.

Pride Parade 2011 (photo by Anne Vanels)

The Canal Festival (10-19 August) is When in Amsterdam's favorite festival of the year. The historical canals come alive with the sound of classical music. One highlight is the sound of grand pianos floating through the city being played by professional musicians. The Festival culminates in the concert on Prinsengracht in front of the Pulitzer Hotel. Be sure to get early for a good vantage point.

World Cinema Amsterdam (8-19 August) brings international cinema to the outdoors. This year the theme is Brazil. If the weather is good expect energetic post film party.

Uitmarkt (24-26 August) is one of Amsterdam's largest cultural festivals. It is the official opening of the cultural season hundreds of acts are on display. Check out Museumplein for the hottest cultural acts of 2012.

When in Amsterdam...enjoy!

When in Amsterdam... - Blogged

Nuit Blanche Amsterdam 2012 is Coming

When in Amsterdam...once a year Nuit Blanche takes place. If you love instillation art, darkness, photography and street art this festival is for you. This year is the third edition of Nuit Blanche in Amsterdam. The festival runs from 7pm-7am and ensures a great night for all. The event was founded 10 years ago in Paris and is now worldwide.

The event is always held in weird, wonderful and sometimes hidden locations throughout Amsterdam. This year there are locations in old shipping warehouses, an old prostitution window, and tattoo parlor to name a few. Be sure to check out local Amsterdam artists Ben de Boef and Sjoco Sjon. Also the art space transformed into a modern Agora with different artisan street food stands. When In Amsterdam favorites are always the instillation art but we will see what this year brings.

Installation art titled: Artificial Happiness

Saturday, June 16, 2012
19.00 - 07.00 hours
Admission: Passe partout ticket € 17.50 / € 15.00 Passe partout CJP members
Tickets are available online at:

When in Amsterdam...enjoy!

When in Amsterdam... - Blogged

Rolling Kitchens Festival at Amsterdam's Westergasfabriek

When in Amsterdam....once a year Kitchens roll into town. Food, music, drinks, food and more food is laid out at Amsterdam's Westergasfabriek. For four days starting Ascension Day  75 vans, caravans, trucks, buses, trailers create a large open air food court on wheels, a food lover's dream.

Rolling Kitchens entrance in Amsterdam
There was so much to choose from we didn't know where to start. The weather was great, the sun came out so we started with a plastic bag of lemon infused water from the lemon fairy.

Lemon Fairy at Rolling Kitchens, Amsterdam
The crowd was large and the lines for food long. We definitively saw what was popular by the length of the line. There was so much food from which to choose: Mexican tacos and ceviche, Thai curry, Moroccan, Vegan, sushi, wood fired pizza, burgers, pig on a spit, Surinam roti, Indian curry, Italian see the problem we faced. What a good problem!
Rolling Kitchens at Amsterdam's Westerpark
We started with a Bara stuffed with Bacalao. This is a dish from Suriname. Bacalao is salted fish and it was warmed on the BBQ. The fish was topped with pickled cabbage and curry ketchup. Wow, the Bara was so fresh and crispy. The salted fish wonderful, the pickles spicy.
Bara with Bacaloa at Rolling Kitchens, Amsterdam
 Now we had food in our stomachs time for one of the long lines. There were some serious BBQs around so we went for the line with a big smoking BBQ.
Smoking BBQ at Rolling Kitchen's Amsterdam
Smokey Goodness BBQ stall in Amsterdam
Smoked BBQ pork roll with coleslaw was chosen. Also a home made ice tea was ordered. The smoked pork was lovely, soft and sweet with BBQ sauce. The ice tea was a hit especially to wash away the lingering spice of the Bara. However, the star of the show was the sunshine that warmed the crowd.
BBQ pork roll with Ice Tea
We walked around amazed by the different vehicles made into food dispensers.

Hungry again from looking at all the wheels, ravioli with ricotta and lemon was selected. No not a large size just a small size,please.

The sauce was a little salty but tasty. The lemon balanced the ricotta. The people serving were rocking, people eating and dancing at the same time.

Wonderful weather, great tasty food, pumping music, happy. We called it a day even though the outdoor movie was about to start. Thank you Mister Kitchen and Pacific Parc for organizing the event. Rolling home on two wheels with a full stomach was satisfying.

Rolling Kitchens runs from 1300 to 2300hrs, Thursday 17 May to Sunday 20 May at Amsterdam's Westergasfabriek.

On Sunday the last day of Rolling Kitchens coincides with the monthly Neighborfood Market. What a fantastic food weekend.

When in Amsterdam...enjoy!

When in Amsterdam... - Blogged
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2012 Amsterdam: Events and Festivals not to be missed

When in Amsterdam... - Blogged

When in Amsterdam welcomes 2012. A year of opportunity, fun and excitement. Also a year of doomsday philosophy and bleak economic predictions for Europe. Amsterdam has weathered many an international storm during its history so I don't think 2012 is going to be any different.

So what to look forward to in 2012.

2012 Queens Day is on a Monday!
In the middle of winter the April 30 festival is the light at the end of the tunnel. Often referred to as the largest street party in the world, in 2012 Queensday (Koninginnedag) will be on a Monday. This means a long weekend of parties.

If you haven't already organised your stay in Amsterdam for this not to be missed event get to it now. Many of Amsterdam's hotels, and tour guides are heavily if not fully booked for this weekend. So get organised so as not to be disappointed.

European Football (Soccer) Championships. Euro 2012 dates for Amsterdam
Hosted in Ukraine and Poland and running from 8 June - 1 July, the Netherlands has drawn, again, a pool of death. Expect Amsterdam to be full 9/14/17 June with their pool matches. 14 June is another date not to be missed when the Dutch go head to head with their arch-rivals the Germans. Amsterdam is certain to be full of nervous tension for this much anticipated event.

If the Dutch are to survive the pool stage and reach the semi final stage, expect Amsterdam to be in the grip of football fever for the semi-final on 27 and 28 June. With the Final to be held on 1 July if anybody remembers the South African World Cup Holland v Brazil game, Amsterdam knows how to celebrate. Watch the youtube clip of what happened in Amsterdam in 1988 when the Dutch won. House boats sank under the weight of celebration!


Olympic Fever
The 2012 Summer Olympic will be held in London a stones throw from Amsterdam. 27 - 12 August are the dates for the Olympics and then 29 August to 9 September is the Paralympics. With International guests descending on this part of the world many are certain to visit Amsterdam pre and post games.

For people planning to fly into Amsterdam's Schiphol Airport book your tickets early. Schiphol Airport is one of the largest and easiest to use in Western Europe so expect flight to be heavily booked from Olympic run-off.

For a full list of Amsterdam festivals see the IAmsterdam website

When in Amsterdam... Enjoy!

Sex Workers storm Amsterdam's International Documentary Film Festival (IDFA)

When in Amsterdam... - Blogged

Amsterdam is a busy place all year round. November is no different. As the clocks change time, the weather drops in temperature and the trees lose their leaves, Amsterdammers scramble to get building projects finished before winter and the film buffs take over down town Amsterdam.

It is the month of IDFA: Amsterdam's International Documentary Film Festival. When in Amsterdam has been attending a two week festival in its 24th year and the largest of its kind in the world. Over 300 documentaries are screened attracting 200 000 visits and around 2600 international visitors.

The city and especially the Rembrandtplein (square) area is crawling with industry people and film fanatics. Talking, selling, networking or just enjoying, you can't get away from the enthusiasm for documentaries in November. As the festival comes to an end it is time to tell you the stars and the prize winners this year.

This year the talk and especially the Dutch chatter has been about Amsterdammers, the Fokkens. Two sweet old Amsterdam ladies in grey knit sweaters identical twin sisters Martine and Louise.

At the age of 69 they have been working in Amsterdam's famed Red Light District for 50 years. One of the sisters still works while the other does not because of problems with her hips. A Documentary Meet the Fokkens about their lives and adventures premiered this year. In time for Christmas the imaginative sisters have also released a book about their lives.

There has been no better example of Dutch honesty then to watch and hear the Fokkens on the television and radio talk show circuit over the past two weeks. Click on the link of an interview with the sisters by the National Broadcaster with English subtitles to watch the women talk about their profession.

With over 300 titles and many events and exhibitions running paralel to IDFA it is hard to list favorites. Below is a list of this years prize winners.

Prize Winners:

Best Feature Length Documentary:
Planet of the Snail (South Korea) is a story of a deaf and blind man and his beloved.

Special Jury Mention and the Audience Award:
5 Broken Cameras (Palastine/France/Netherlands) tells the story of a Palastinian village dealing with Jewish settlement and encroachment over a period of 5 years.

IDFA Award for Best Mid-Length Documentary:
Montenegro (Argentina) is about the hermit life of a man and a dog on a quiet island.

Dutch Cultural Media Fun Documentary Prize:
Floating Bodies (Netherlands) about an unidentified corps

IDFA Award for 1st Appearance: The Vanishing Spring Light (China/Canada) life of West Street citizens in Dujiangyan City.

Best Music Documentary Prize (inaugural):
Last Days Here about the crack cocaine addicted front man Bobby Liebling

Best Green Screen Documentary
Bitter Seeds about why an Indian farmer commits suicide every 30 minutes.

Student Award for Documentary
The Betrayal (England/Norway) making mistakes in the world of Norwegian squatters and seeking forgiveness.

Blackberry sponsored Youth Award
Last Days of Winter (Iran) is a portrait about the lives of 7 Iranian boys in a youth detention center.

For more information visit the Film Festival's page: