What’s on in Germany: December 8 – 14

This Week's Highlights: Choirs sing Bach in Leipzig, A rock opera in Frankfurt and a ballet rendition of "A Christmas Carol" in Dresden.

What's on in Germany: December 8 - 14
Photo: DPA



Halleluhwah! – Tribute to CAN

For many, CAN was the greatest musical group in the history of rock and roll. Dozens of artists pay tribute to the Cologne band at an exhibition at Berlin’s Künstlerhaus Bethanien that features artworks inspired by the experimental rockers. Check it out Thursday when some of the artists hold a panel discussion in English about the relationship between art and rock.

Price: Free

Location: Künstlerhaus Bethanien, Kottbusser Strasse 10

Times: Thursday, December 12, 7pm (Art & Rock Talk); Tuesday – Sunday, 2-7pm; through December 18 (Regular Hours)

Phone: 030 616 9030

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St. Lucia Christmas Parade

With it’s charming Scandinavian atmosphere, the Saint Lucia Chistmas Market is one of Berlin’s most magical. (The Swedes mix almonds and raisins into their mulled wine. Yum!) March over to the Kulturbrauerei Tuesday when the Lucia Choir parades through the old brewery’s historic brick courtyards and sings enchanting Swedish songs by the big Christmas tree. “O Tannenbaum, O Tannenbaum!” Wait, that’s not Swedish!

Price: Free

Location: St. Lucia Christmas Market in the Culture Brewery, Schönhauser Allee 36-39

Times: Tuesday, December 13, 6-7pm

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Snap on your sexiest spandex and start peddling. Rollapaluza is all the rage across the UK, and the indoor sporting event is about to take Berlin by storm. Here’s how it works. A pair of riders race in place on custom built “static roller rigs” as the beer-fueled crowd cheers them on. Strut your stuff Friday night at the Keirin Cycle Culture Cafe. Stationary bikes are the new mechanical bulls.

Price: Free
Location: Keirin Cycle Culture Café, Oberbaumstrasse 5
Times: Friday, December 9, 8pm-midnight
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Children’s Events

Children’s Films, Presented by Gareth Moore

Kids, you’re in luck. Five artists each made a film especially for you, and they’re being shown together in a little 20-minute screening at venues around Bliefeld through January. This week, The Little Hunchback, Pippi and Thelonius, and other sweet cinematic tales unfold at FZZ Baumheide. No parents allowed! Unless you’ve got a little one who needs a companion. But no other exceptions! This one’s for the children.

Price: Free

Times: Wednesday, December 14, 3pm

Location: FZZ Baumheide, Rabenhof 76

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Franzo-Sing! French Songs

Do something outrageous this weekend, sing in French! Belgian musician Fabienne Carlier is a lively entertainer who leads a children’s choir in Cologne. This Saturday, she invites parents and children to join her francophone ensemble. It’s a free trial and you’ve got nothing to lose so go ahead and channel your inner Edith Piaf.

Price: Free

Times: Friday, December 9, 5pm
Location: Cologne French Institute, Sachsenring 77

Phone: 0221 690 6864

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A Christmas Carol

Ever seen Scrooge do a plié? The Saxony Theatre’s ballet rendition of the Charles Dickens classic Yuletide tale premieres Saturday and runs right up through Christmas day. God bless us every one.

Price: €8-12

Location: Landesbühnen Sachsen, Meissner Strasse 152

Times: Saturday, December 10, 5pm; Tuesday, December 13 and Wednesday, December 14, 6:30pm

Phone: 0351 89 540

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The Who’s Tommy

“See me, feel me, touch me, heal me.” Pete Townshend and Des McAnuff’s epic rock opera is what psychedelic glam rock dreams are made of. Get acquainted with the “Pinball Wizard” this week when The English Theatre Frankfurt stages The Who’s Tommy.

Price: €29-42

Location: The English Theater Frankfurt, Gallusanlage 7

Times: Thursday, December 8 and Friday, December 9, 7:30pm; Saturday, December 10, 3pm and 7:30pm; Sunday, December 11, 6pm; Tuesday, December 13, 7:30pm; Wednesday, December 14, 7:30pm

Phone: 069 242 31620

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Matti Aikio – Crime Scene

What goes on way up in the northern regions of Lapland? Up above the border of the Arctic Circle where the moody winter light is fleeting. Where the Saami people herd the reindeer just as their fathers, and their father’s fathers did before them. Saami-Finnish artist Matti Aikio’s video installation “Crime Scene” offers a glimpse into this intriguing world. See it this weekend at Kampnagel where it’s shown as part of the Norwind Festival.

Price: TBD

Location: Kampnagel, Foyer, 20

Times: Thursday, December 8 – Sunday, December 11, 6:30pm

Phone: 040 270 9490

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Johann Sebastian Bach’s Christmas Oratorio

It’s always a treat to see works by Bach performed at St. Thomas’ Church where he held the esteemed position of cantor all those years before his death in 1750. This weekend, the Leipzig Gewandhaus Choir joins the St. Thomas Boys Choir for a performance of Bach’s Christmas Oratorio. Penned for the 1734 Christmas season, the sacred piece is a timeless tribute to the birth of Christ.

Price: €20-90

Location: St. Thomas’ Church, Thomaskirchhof 18

Times: Friday, December 9, 7pm; Saturday, December 10, 5pm; Sunday, December 11, 5pm

Ticket Hotline: 0341 12 70 280

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Ave Maria

A favorite among Catholic grandmothers, the “Ave Maria” has been set to music by many a composer over the centuries. From Charles Gounod’s magnificent melody to the rousing rendition Verdi penned for Otello, soprano Regine Sturm, and Counterteno Bernhard Landauer sing selections Friday in Munich. Bring grandma.

Price: €19-45.20

Location: Allerheiligen Hofkirche, Residenz, Residenzstrasse 1

Times: Friday, December 9, 7pm

Tickets: 0180 55 96 860 (.14/min)

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New Music in the Sculpture Park

The cold weather months are a striking time to visit a sculpture park. The oversized pieces stand out against the barren trees, and if you’re lucky, a snow covered ground. Bundle up for a stroll around the Waldfrieden Sculpture Park in Wuppertal Tuesday, then gather for a performance of works by Arthur Honegger, Igor Strawinsky, Jean Francaix, Darius Milhaud and Bohuslav Martinu.

Price: €19

Location: Skulpturenpark Waldfrieden, Hirschstrasse 12

Times: Tuesday, December 13, 7pm

Ticket Hotline: 01805 280 100

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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.