What to do in Amsterdam in November

Oh, November.  I have been waiting for you!

If you are a word-nerd like me, then we have an exciting month ahead of us!  Not a party month, but a perfect month for huddling in warm venues out of the cold, and listening, speaking, and writing.

NaNoWriMo (1-30 November):  This hard-to-say and hard-to-do event hits the world every November, and The Netherlands is no exception!  For the entire month of November, participants are encouraged to write an entire book- start to finish- by the last day of November.  To help facilitate this, write-in’s are organized all over the country.  This year, the Amsterdam write-in’s will be taking place every Monday on the top floor of the OBA Central Library.  Just picture it- a room full of wannabe writers gathered together just to type, type, type!  Bliss!  (Oops- did I just let my nerd colors shine through?)

Movember (1-30 November): Men (and the unfortunate odd woman here and there) this month is your time to shine!  Movember is a world-wide initiative to help raise money for men’s health and have fun while doing so.  The idea is to sign up, grow your beard, and raise awareness (and money via donations from friends and family), and in the meantime take part in a lot of fun beard-and-moustache-related activities that are on offer (which, to be honest, is an odd sentence to write).  On the Movember Netherlands facebook page, men are also encouraged to share their progress at beard-growing.

Truer words were never spoken.

Amsterdam Film Week (1-6 November): One week of award winning films from the past year.  The films come from all genres and are all winners of the most prestigious film festivals- from Cannes to Sundance.  You don’t even have to think about your choice- throw a dart, draw a name out of a hat-whatever method you choose, you are going to pick a “winner”- literally.

Watch the winners, feel like a winner

Hollandse Nieuwe Theater Festival (2 – 5 November): Every two years the Nieuwe Theater Festival gives new playwright and theater talent a platform to present their work.  This year the festival will take place at the MC Theater, so you can also grab a meal next door at Toko MC beforehand- brilliant warm food from southern climates to help stave off the cold.

Storytelling Festival (4-6 November): For three days, storytellers from around the world will come and….well, tell their stories.  Mostly in Dutch but with some very choice English & French performances, this is sure to be quite a special festival.  Tickets are sold for each performance separately, and are an average of about 7 euros per show and spread throughout several locations in the city.

Museumnacht (5 November): For one night a year, all of the museums in Amsterdam stay open until late and put on special exhibitions, installations, and parties.  Think: guided tours, DJ’s, fashion, food, audiovisual art, and participation.  And of course, the afterparties in pretty much every venue you can think of.  This is the one night of the year when Amsterdam venues (both nightlife & cultural) really put their best foot forward.  Tickets are 17 euros for a pre-day passepartout, or 20 euros on the night itself, but it always does sell out early, so plan ahead!

A must-do!

Opera in the Tuschinski (5 & 17 November): For something completely out of the ordinary, how about live streaming opera from the New York Met straight onto Pathe Tuschinski cinema screens?  A 16th century art form brought to you by 21st century technology!  Isn’t the world an amazing place right now?  On two different days in November we can see Siegfried (5 November) or Satyagraha (19 November) as it is performed in New York.  And this time, you can TOTALLY munch on popcorn during the show and get away with it! Win-win!

Dag van de Duurzaamheid /Day of Sustainability (11 November): A country-wide initiative, the Day of Sustainability is a chance for discussion and learning about all things duurzaam.  So if “cradle-to-cradle”, “energy” and “electric cars” are the kinds of words that get you hot under the collar, and if you’ve ever wanted to know how to make a solar panel, then this is the day for you!

Hegarty on Advertising (14 November): Coming a little closer to the V home this month is an event that we are all impatiently waiting for: John Hegarty, one of the world’s most famous advertising creatives, will be giving a talk at Hotel V on advertising and his most recent book ‘Hegarty on Advertising‘.  Brought to V by The American Book Center, the tickets for this event were rapidly sold out, so if you are one of the few, then you are one of the lucky, and we will see you here!

an ABC/Hotel V presentation

International Documentary Film Festival  (16-27 November): For the 24th year in a row, the IDFA is coming to Amsterdam with around 300 documentaries to choose from, as well as related events such as discussions, workshops, and competitions, and even short films from young adults and documentaries for children.

Watch & Learn!

Cinematic Sounds (23 November): This month’s silent film shown at Melkweg will be The Golem: How He Came into the World a cult classic from Germany filmed in 1920 about how the creature The Golem was created and brought to life in Prague to protect the Jews from persecution.  A fascinating story that will be brought to life with the modern addition of a new soundtrack by live musicians!

TedxAmsterdam (25 November): It’s not too useful to post this here, as the invitations are few and extremely hard to come by, but helpful to remember that shortly thereafter the films of the talks will be online!

Brazil Festival (until 15 November): Art, dancing, discussions, music, food, and film, all from our faraway friends the Brazilians!  Expect a lot of warmth and liveliness, and a very full program that takes place all over the city.

Feel the heat!

So there you go.  It’s not a crazy-get-drunk-and-feel-crappy-in-the-morning, but more like a month to fill your brain with all sorts of broadening events and festivities.

I, for one, cannot wait!

And in addition to special events, we are welcoming a fun new place to Amsterdam!

With pretty much everyone AND THEIR MOTHER posting entire facebook albums shot with the iPhone Hipstamatic app, it was about time the Real Deal stepped back into the picture (pun intended).  Enter the  Lomography store in the Negen Straatjes.    Lomography is a special school of photography based on saturated colors, non-traditional vantage points, and an unspoken rule that the ordinary can be transformed into the nostalgic and special.  The store intends to reintroduce analogue film with events, workshops, and of course- camera and film sales.  So we can finally all put that Hipstamatic to rest, mmkay?

Strangely nostalgic for 2011


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