What’s up in Berlin? January – March 2018

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Snow slush and the bitter cold: it’s true, winter in Berlin can get a little messy at times. But then again, there are some sunny days. And they are all the better thus. And on the bright side: While the hot summer in town has everybody chill out with most theatres, cinemas, musicals, opera houses, and concert halls closed for the warmest months, now in winter the cultural scene is on fire! Countless amazing events await you in these next couple months, and there’s more: trade shows, special exhibitions, and film festivals make this one of the most exciting times of the year. So dress up for fashion week, take a seat for Berlinale, and get ready for the biggest events for January, February, and March 2018:

On the silver screen

Freezing your toes off in that January weather? Let’s go to the pictures! We’ve only just had our mind blown by the biggest opening of 2017 with Star Wars – The Last Jedi, but already we have so much more to look forward to, as a glance at the festival calendar reveals. It begins with small yet charming short film festival British Shorts (January 11 – 17) which brings us a diverse mix of works by contemporary filmmakers from the island. Two weeks later, we are taken to the other end of Europe with Greek festival Hellas Filmbox Berlin (January 24 – 28). If you can’t wait that long, you might want to bridge the gap with Fantasy Filmfest White Nights which makes a stop here on its Europe Tour on January 20 – 21. The highlight everybody’s been waiting for is Berlin’s biggest festival though: Berlin International Film Festival, or short: Berlinale, will attract world-famous actors, directors, and movie buffs from around the world from February 15 through 25 again. And there’s even better news: You can be a part of it! Berlinale is the world’s biggest public-audience film festivals. Thus, you can do what is normally reserved for celebs: Watch the newest blockbusters months before everyone else.

Quite a (trade) show

Mercedes Benz Fashion Week is dead, long live Mercedes Benz Fashion Week! After ten years as head sponsor of the event, the car company has finally decided to drop out of it; only to announce they are going to be back on board just a few months later. It might all be for publicity’s sake, but there’s said to be a brand-new concept, a new venue, and fresh cooperations. The biannual event goes by the abbreviated name MBFW 2018 now and will host about a dozen of fashion shows between January 16 and 19, 2018.

For years now, nutrition has been the most controversial lifestyle issue. Luckily, Berlin has been at the forefront of food fashion for over 90 years already. This is also due to IGW – Internationale Grüne Woche (January 19 – 28), the world’s biggest trade show for food, gardening, and agriculture. If you’re a hobby gardener yourself, you might want to stay in town a little longer for Gartenträume Berlin (“Gardening Dreams Berlin”) from February 2 through 4. Talking about food and lifestyle: Vegan raw-food fair Rohvolution (“Rawvolution”) celebrates its 10th birthday in 2018 and offers vegan appetizers and a meat-free revolution at Wuhlheide park on March 17 & 18.

And one more highlight, especially for travellers: ITB Berlin, the world’s leading travel trade show invites you to the marvelous worlds of travelling adventures once again. March 7 – 11.

Culturally significant

The cultural scene of Berlin is an exciting playground for creative minds from all around the globe. Dance, music, art, and theatre – there are numerous festivals waiting for you to explore the scene first-hand. Tanztage Berlin (January 4 – 14) traditionally rings in the new year with the best of contemporary dance and unforgettable performances at Sophiensaele venue. The future of art has been created at transmediale (January 31 – February 4) for over 30 years now. It’s Germany’s most influential festival for media art and digital culture. In parallel, CTM Festival (January 26 – February 4) has established itself as a pioneer of electronic music and experimental future beats – and Berlin’s techno scene is listening. The next generation of dance theatre and ballet dancing has its big meetup at Tanzolymp International Young Dance Festival (February 15 – 19). Another festival for contemporary music and composing is MaerzMusik – Festival for Time Issues from March 16 through 25, featuring internationally renowned artists. March 27 is World Theatre Day, and the many theatres and stages in town will certainly contribute with a number of exceptional performances. It’s not yet clear, whether young yet promising literature festival Literatur Berlin in Prenzlauer Berg will take place again this year, but we keep hoping that it will make for a beautiful first day of spring – literary.


When the streets are all snow slush and the cold is creeping up, it might be a good day for a visit to the museum. You’re looking at quite the choice here in Berlin: There are more than 175 museums in town! If you just so happen to have enough time at hand to visit all of them, well, good. If not, stick to these amazing special exhibitions: Like the winners’ works of Sony World Photography Awards 2017, which are on display until January 21 at Willy Brandt Haus – without admission fee. C/O Berlin is known for its high-quality well-curated photography exhibitions, and their retrospective Joel Meyerowitz. Why Color? (until March 11) is definitely worth visiting. To explore the historic roots of current issues is the aim of special exhibition Jews, Christians and Muslims at Martin-Gropius-Bau (until March 4). And German Historic Museum dedicates a huge exhibition to one of the most important developments of the 20th century for the 100th anniversary of the incident: 1917. Revolution. – Russia and Europe (until April 15). One of Pop Art’s most influential figure was a Scotsman with Italian roots: Eduardo Paolozzi created not only numerous sculptures and graphic works, he also designed a Paul McCartney album cover as well as a tube station in London. Berlinische Galerie honours him with the retrospective Lots of Pictures – Lots of Fun (February 9 – March 28).

You see, there’s a lot to see and do here in winter, too. These are the biggest events of the next three months, but there’s always so much more going on. Ask us at the reception of Industriepalast Hostel Berlin and get some recommendations for your unforgettable Berlin experience.

Picture: Datei: #138935912 | Urheber: TIMDAVIDCOLLECTION – fotolia

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