Art and culture in Zuidoost
Loud, proud, and ever-changing Zuidoost offers a beautiful melange of community theatres, exhibition spaces and artistic initiatives. The neighbourhood lights up in the summer for various music events and open-air film festivals. Meanwhile, Arena Boulevard is home to the city's biggest entertainment venues for pop concerts, rock gigs, comedy and theatre.
Catch some free award-winning cinema during the summer in the great urban outdoors of Amsterdam’s Zuidoost. The Bijlmerbios Festival brings three nights of films to the Kraaiennest metro station, with films literally screened in the tunnel under the tracks. Guests are invited to bring their own seats or get there early to take a handy pew on one of the nearby restaurant terraces. The festival's new permanent location, the Bijlmerbios Film House, is located in the former head office of ING: the iconic national monument 'Het Zandkasteel'. Their Wednesday to Saturday programming will consist of unmissable art house cinema, documentaries and shorts, with various talks and panel discussions on the agenda.
Kwaku Summer Festival
Those wanting to dance the night away can keep an eye out for music festivals like Amsterdam Open Air and Reggae Lake Festival, both regularly held in Gaasperplas park. But undoubtedly the highlight of the festival season in Zuidoost is Kwaku, which takes place every summer in Nelson Mandela Park. This multi-weekend event encompasses live performances, a host of lectures, debates and competitions, and dozens of food and shopping stalls.
The Open Space Contemporary Art Museum (OSCAM) is a place where art, fashion, design and craftsmanship come together. The museum was opened on the occasion of 50 years of Bijlmer to highlight the cultural diversity of the district. Check the programming for inspiring exhibitions and programs with young, well-known and unknown artists and art institutions.
In the middle of Nelson Mandela Park, the Bijlmer Parktheater is the cultural meeting point for the neighbourhood. Check the schedule for dance and theatre performances, as well as workshops and special events for children and teens. Many production companies also put on their try-out shows here - probably because the audience is so warm and welcoming!
The Centrum Beeldende Kunst Zuidoost (Centre for Visual Arts Zuidoost) has been in operation for over 25 years, bringing the general public together through exhibitions, workshops, art education, artist-in-residence programmes, commissions, and debates. The art collection encompasses more than 2000 works, with many outdoor pieces. We’d also recommend checking out the CBK Giftshop which offers unique design items.
A cross between an archive and a museum, Imagine IC, in the heart of Zuidoost, is dedicated to documenting daily life and cultural heritage in Amsterdam. They put on events and exhibitions in collaboration with the Wereldmuseum, heritage education, workshops and seminars.
Sandwiched between the growing selection of entertainment options in Zuidoost, Pathé Arena is one of the most modern cinemas in the city. The multiplex boasts 14 screens (including an IMAX and 4DX screen), 602 cushy chairs and state-of-the-art facilities for your viewing pleasure. The schedule includes all of the biggest Hollywood blockbusters, many of which will have English subtitles - but do check the programming!
When the biggest pop, rock and dance names stop in Amsterdam they require the biggest arenas and AFAS Live, with a capacity of 5,500, is one of them. Whether you're standing at the very front or seated in the sloped, open seating at the back, it's easy to maintain focus on the artists on stage. On the agenda, you’ll find a wide variety of comedy, theatre and family-friendly performances.
Ziggo Dome is the city's largest multi-purpose entertainment location. Two large balconies swoop around the boxy arena, with the stalls either all-standing or all-seated, depending on the event. Throughout the venue you’ll find a wide variety of bars and eateries, ensuring the thousands of visitors are satisfied before, during and after the performances. Check the programme for some of the biggest names in the music industry.