What’s on in Germany: May 26 – June 1

This week’s highlights: Contemporary design in Berlin, classic cars in Hamburg, and a night of music in Munich.

What's on in Germany: May 26 - June 1



Viva la Musica

A breathtaking evening of classical music awaits at the Italian Renaissance Gardens in Marzahn. Attendees to “Giardino della Bobolina” for Viva la Musica will be treated to the Berlin Symphonic Concert Orchestra’s performances of renowned works by Italian composers Guiseppe Verdi, Giacomo Puccini and Antonio Vivaldi. A finale of fireworks over Gardens of the World tops off an evening of explosive musical proportions. Holders of a yearly pass get half-off, and all concert goers can traverse the surrounding gardens for free on the 28th.

Price: €22-24

Location: Italian Renaissance Garden, Eisenacher straße 99 12685

Times: May 28, 8pm

Phone: (030) 700906-699

More Information: Green Berlin Website


Long Night of Science

For more than a decade, the Lange Nacht der Wissenschaft has drawn inquiring minds together into laboratories and classrooms across the capital one Saturday night a year. Scientists take the evening to present some of the latest and most exciting findings from their fields, including performing live experiments and opening the floor to questions from the public. Some 80 different topics on the program ensure there’s something for everyone.

Price: €7-13, Late-Night Ticket (from 11pm) €5

Location: Various locations (Berlin & Potsdam)

Times: May 28, 5pm – 1am

More Information: Lange Nacht der Wissenschaften Website


On Living

Two contrasting West German perspectives on former East Germany form the basis of an exhibition of 280 photographs by Thomas Hoepker and Daniel Biskup. Between 1959 and 1991, Hoepker captured a detached view of everyday life in the GDR, including some of the transitions that took place after the collapse of the Berlin Wall. In contrast, Biskup followed the events of the 1990s with visible empathy, including breakup of the Soviet Union and the social and political turbulence that resulted thereafter.

Price: €6, Tours €4

Location: German Historical Museum, Unter den Linden 2, 10117

Times: May 11 – October 3, 10am-6pm

More Information: German Historical Museum Website

DMY International Design Festival

Contemporary design network DMY hosts its annual International Design Festival at Tempelhof Airport for another aesthetically-stimulating edition. Focusing on contemporary product design, the event plays host to both established and up-and-coming designers, who take the opportunity to present and absorb the latest products, prototypes and ideas. Symposia, designer talks, workshops and awards are intended to help keep the industry on its creative toes.

Price: €6-55

Location: Tempelhof Airport

Times: June 1- 5, opening day from 8pm, otherwise from 11am-12am

More Information: International Design Festival Website



Kunst Privat!

Just in time for the summer break, leading banks and companies in the German state of Hesse are opening their doors again this year for Kunst privat!. The three-day exhibition is designed to give the public access to otherwise inaccessible pieces of precious art belonging to banks and businesses. Participating groups provide guided tours of their collections.

Price: n/a

Location: Various locations in and around Frankfurt am Main

Time: May 26 – 28, times vary (choose a location for details)

More Information: KunstPrivat Website



Hamburg-Berlin Auto Bild Classic

A three-day parade of some 150 classic cars makes its way from Hamburg to Berlin. The 640km-route begins on Dessauerstrasse in Hamburg and includes stops in cities and towns along the Elbe River. Various festivities along the Hamburg harbour precede the event, while a gala at the Hyatt Hotel in Berlin tops the parade off.

Price: Free to watch

Location: Start from Dessauer Straße 10, Hamburg (see website for complete route)

Time: May 26, 2pm – May 28, 5:30pm (in Berlin)

More Information: Auto Bild Website



The ideal late-spring festival, Altonale brings Hamburg’s Altona district to life with an energetic array of performance art and parades lining the streets. The two-week festival includes an extended program for literature, art, theatre and film, while the three-day street festival centres on music and dance. The annual celebration is going on its 13th round this year with organizers anticipating some 500,000 patrons.

Price: Free for some events (see website for details)

Location: Various (see website for details)

Time: June 1 – 19, times vary (see website for details)

Phone: (040) 39 80 69 70 (office hours: Monday-Thursday 10am-1pm)

More Information: Altonale Website



Long Night of Music

A city-wide celebration of music with some 400 live concerts taking place in 100 locations, Munich’s Long Night of Music goes until the wee hours of the morning. A wide selection of genres is represented including gospel, blues, hip-hop and flamenco. With more than 25,000 visitors and shuttle buses to chauffeur them between venues, this event has evolved into one of the city’s most exciting cultural celebrations.

Price: €15

Location: Various locations throughout Munich

Time: June 1 – 20, 8pm-3am

More Information: Long Night of Music Website



The most expensive silent film ever made, Fritz Lang’s Metropolis lost its entirety following its original 1927 release. A restored version of the film released in 2001 was inscribed on UNESCO’s Memory of the World Register, while a copy of the film with an additional 30 minutes of footage was recovered in Argentina in 2008. This version was screened publicly for the first time in more than 75 years in 2010. Now the Stuttgart Philharmonic Orchestra will provide the background music for a screening of the classic German expressionist film in Munich.

Price: €34-62.30

Location: Gasteig 
Philharmonie, Rosenheimer Straße 5, 81667

Time: May 29, 2pm

Phone: (089) 48 09 80

More Information: Gasteig Website


Bonsai Exhibit

It’s an invasion of the Bonsai persuasion, with around 60 exhibitors presenting some of Germany’s most pristine Bonsai trees at Munich’s Botanical Gardens. The artistic practice of growing a small tree or shrub in a container and shaping it aesthetically originates in Asia, with Japanese Bonsai tradition dating back thousands of years. While many of the trees on display were sewn and raised in Germany, others were imported from Asia and have been cared for in the traditional style.

Price: €5, €3 (discounted)

Location: Winterhalle, Botanischer Garten München-Nymphenburg, Menzinger Str. 65, 80638

Time: May 18 – 29, 9am-7pm

More Information: Botanical Garden Munich Website


Four injured as WWII bomb explodes near Munich train station

Four people were injured, one of them seriously, when a World War II bomb exploded at a building site near Munich's main train station on Wednesday, emergency services said.

Smoke rises after the WWII bomb exploded on a building site in Munich.
Smoke rises after the WWII bomb exploded on a building site in Munich. Photo: picture alliance/dpa | Privat

Construction workers had been drilling into the ground when the bomb exploded, a spokesman for the fire department said in a statement.

The blast was heard several kilometres away and scattered debris hundreds of metres, according to local media reports.

Images showed a plume of smoke rising directly next to the train tracks.

Bavaria interior minister Joachim Herrmann told Bild that the whole area was being searched.

Deutsche Bahn suspended its services on the affected lines in the afternoon.

Although trains started up again from 3pm, the rail operator said there would still be delays and cancellations to long-distance and local travel in the Munich area until evening. 

According to the fire service, the explosion happened near a bridge that must be passed by all trains travelling to or from the station.

The exact cause of the explosion is unclear, police said. So far, there are no indications of a criminal act.

WWII bombs are common in Germany

Some 75 years after the war, Germany remains littered with unexploded ordnance, often uncovered during construction work.

READ ALSO: What you need to know about WWII bomb disposals in Germany

However, most bombs are defused by experts before they explode.

Last year, seven World War II bombs were found on the future location of Tesla’s first European factory, just outside Berlin.

Sizeable bombs were also defused in Cologne and Dortmund last year.

In 2017, the discovery of a 1.4-tonne bomb in Frankfurt prompted the evacuation of 65,000 people — the largest such operation since the end of the war in Europe in 1945.