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What's On in Amsterdam May 2014


May is a great time to visit Amsterdam, with pleasant late-spring temperatures and plenty to see and do.

The Van Gogh museum reopens at the start of the month. Check out our insider guide to other things going on in and around the city for May 2014...

Museums & Exhibitions

Van Gogh Museum presents Félix Vallotton. Fire beneath the ice, an exhibition of paintings and prints from the Franco-Swiss artist. Runs 14 Feb to 1 Jun 2014.

Rijksmuseum – Reopened in April 2013 after 10 years of renovation, the Rijksmuseum's rich collection (including Rembrandt's Night Watch) is a must-see in Amsterdam. Cover up! Coats & Jackets 1630-1940, an exhibit of 40 coats from the Rijksmuseum collection, running until 8 Jun 2014. Art is Therapy, exhibition where British writer-philosophers Alain De Botton and John Armstrong show what art can mean. Runs until 7 Sep 2014.

Hermitage AmsterdamExpedition Silk Road, Treasures from the Hermitage, antiquities from the age-old trade route from east to west. This exhibition runs until 5 Sep 2014.

StedelijkMarcel Wanders: Pinned Up at the Stedelijk, large survey of this distinguished Dutch designer. Runs until 15 Jun 2014. Jeff Wall: Tableaux, Pictures, Photographs, 1996–2013, a detailed selection of work from the leading Canadian photographer. Until 3 Aug 2014.

Anne Frank HouseThe helpers of the Secret Annexe – temporary exhibition focussing on the people who helped the Frank family go into hiding. Runs to 11 Oct 2014. Also see below in 'Other Events' section for details of the major new Anne play.

Amsterdam MuseumVan Oostsanen – retrospective exhibition of early Dutch master Jacob Cornelisz van Oostsanen (1470-1533). Runs until 29 Jun 2014. Converted Becoming Muslim - Being Muslim looks at the social develpoment of some Dutch people converting to Islam. Runs to 27 July 2014.

Nieuwe Kerk World Press Photo 2014 featuring the best of the year's photo journalism runs 18 Apr to 22 Jun 2014.

Oude KerkYou don't know where you are going, exhibition about home and leaving for places unknown. Runs 17 May to 15 Jun 2014.

StadsarchiefHeineken's Amsterdam, an exhibition at the City Archives on Gerard Heineken (1841-1893) and how his brewery business and philanthropy impacted the city. Ends 11 May 2014.

Tropenmuseum Black & White – 150 years after the abolition of slavery, this exhibition asks who is black and who is white. Featuring photos, videos, personal stories and historical documents. Runs until 1 July 2014. Dutch Doc Photo Award 2014, documetary photographers portray everyday life. 23 May to 6 July 2014.

Allard Pierson MuseumThe Crimea. Gold and Secrets of the Black Sea archaeological exhibition – extended run to 15 Jun 2014.

Rembrandt House Master of Melancholy: Etchings by Livio Ceschin, exhibition of 50 prints from the modern-day Italian etcher. Open 10 May to 29 Jun 2014.

Jewish Historical MuseumRoman Vishniac (re)discovered, a photo exhibition of Jewish life in Eastern Europe by Russian-American photographer Roman Vishniac (1897-1990). Runs to 24 Aug 2014. Holland's most popular actress, exhibition about the life of Esther de Boer-van Rijk, runs 19 May to 28 Sep 2014.

FOAMRichard Mosse The Enclave, a multi-media installation about the civil war in eastern Congo is running until 1 Jun 2014.

Huis Marseille Apartheid and After, a photo exhibition on South Africa runs until 8 Jun 2014.

Magna Plaza – Permanent exhibition of Rembrandt, all his paintings, lifesize reproductions of all Rembrandt's works on show.

Amsterdam ExpoThe Art of the Brick – internationally renowned exhibition featuring large-scale sculptures made from Lego bricks comes to Amsterdam. Opens 29 May 2014, end date likely 14 Sep 2014.

Museum of Bags and PursesWelcome Abroad – discover the history of travel and development of suitcases. Runs to 31 Aug 2014.

Museum Van Loon – Exhibition Children's Portraits, diverse portrait collection from the Van Loon family collection. Runs until 9 Jun 2014.

Geelvinck Hinlopen House1813, Netherlands liberated by Russia exhibition at the grand canal house commemorating the liberation from France. Closes 19 May 2014.

Willet-HolthuysenSilver Miniatures, presentation of part of the museum's collection of Dutch silver miniatures from the 17th to 19th centuries. Runs until 31 Aug 2014.

CoBrA MuseumFrom the Guggenheim Collection to the Cobra Museum Amstelveen, see CoBrA works from the Guggenheim (New York) collection. Runs until 31 Aug 2014.

Check out our comprehensive Amsterdam museums section

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Football - domestic season comes to a close:
Ajax home match at the Amsterdam ArenA:
Ajax vs NEC – 3 May, 1845 (Eredivisie, Dutch League)

International friendlies:
Netherlands vs Ecuador – 17 May, 2030 at Amsterdam ArenA
Netherlands vs Ghana – 31 May, 2030 at Feyenoord Stadium, Rotterdam

Shell Eco-Marathon – energy efficient cars race at Rotterdam Ahoy, 15-18 May 2014.

Inline Skating:
Friday Night Skate – a 20km organised skate around the streets of Amsterdam held every Friday night (2030, weather permitting) from Vondelpark Pavilion (former Film Museum).

>>>See what's on in Amsterdam in June or other months
Other Events in and around Amsterdam

National Remembrance Day – Ceremony commemorating the war dead, held in Dam Square on 4 May. A 2 minute silence is held at 2000.

Liberation Day – Various concerts at stages throughout Amsterdam including Dam Square. 5 May. See our map of Dam Square

dam square events

Public Holidays May 2014 – 5 May (Liberation Day) and 29 May (Ascension Day).

Fiesta Cubana – Check out DJ Arno's popular Cuban-style salsa night at the Badcuyp Amsterdam, €5 entry, Friday 2 May from 10pm.

De Pure Markt – Special Sunday market event (hours: 1100-1800) with a focus on selling local, seasonal and healthy produce of high quality. With music and other activities, cafe and food stalls. 11 May 2014 at Amstelpark; 25 May 2014 at Park Frankandael, Amsterdam.

Sunday Market – Monthly market event with a focus on fashion, art and design, plus good food and drink. Sunday 4 May from 1200 at Westergasfabriek.

NeighbourFood Market – Another Sunday market event (from 1100) featuring local food products. Westergasfabriek on Sunday 18 May 2014.

IJ-Hallen – Huge weekend flea market event held at NDSM-wharf in north Amsterdam. 10-11 May 2014. Plus May 31-Jun 1 2014.

Taste of Amsterdam – Food festival over 4 days at Amstelpark with various events held including lectures, cooking competitions and wine-tasting. 15-18 May 2014.

Rolling Kitchens – Food event festival where dozens of mobile kitchens offer their dishes at the Westergasfabriek. 28 May-1 Jun 2014.

Pacha Festival – Dance music festival event at Java island in Amsterdam on Saturday 17 May 2014.

Indiestad – Indie city music festival incorporating the London Calling festival. Runs 9-10 May 2014 at Paradiso.

Amsterdam Tulip Days – See tulips in a number of the city's gardens including Museum Van Loon. 3-4 May 2014.

GRID2014 Photo Festival – Biennial program of international photo exhibitions to be held at various venues throughout Amsterdam, Amstelveen and Haarlem. The theme of GRID2014 is Constructions. Runs 23 May to 30 June 2014.

Tattoo, Art and Street Art Convention – On at Amsterdam RAI (halls 4/5) between 30 May and 1 June 2014.

Netherlands Opera – Perform "Faust", Muziektheater Amsterdam, various shows 10-27 May 2014.

Pathé Met Opera – "Rossini – La Cenerentola" (10 May 2014) shown live from the New York Met at Amsterdam's Tuschinski.

Toppers in Concert – Popular, kitsch Dutch singers perform at the Amsterdam ArenA 24/30/31 May 2014.

Boom Chicago – Comedy and improv show held almost daily – now playing at Rozentheater on Rozengracht.

North Sea Jazz Club – Hosts a wide variety of jazz, funk, soul and world music every weekend (Friday & Saturday) at the Westergasfabriek. Dinner concerts include a 3 course meal by the in-house chef.

ANNE – Major permanent theatre production of the diary of Anne Frank covering the 2 years Anne and family spent hiding in the Secret Annnexe. Held at the new Theater Amsterdam, a purpose-built theatre with 11,000 seats in the Westelijke Houthavens district, just north-west of the centre. The play generally runs Thursday to Sunday from 8 May 2014. Note, a multilingual translation system for foreign visitors using tablets should be up and running by 1 July.

Other events in Netherlands:

Keukenhof 2014 – The world famous tulip and flower park in Lisse is open until 18 May 2014. The theme for 2014 is "Holland" with a focus on Amsterdam's canals.

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Free Concerts

Bimhuis – Jazz venue has free Session event held every Tuesday evening at 2200 in the cafe.

Muziektheater Amsterdam – Free concert in the foyer every Tuesday at 1230.

Concertgebouw – Classical concert every Wednesday at 1230.

Muziekgebouw aan 't IJ – Free concert on Tuesday 20 May 2014 at 1230.

Westerkerk – Free lunchtime organ concert every Friday at 1300.

North Sea Jazz Club – Free jam sessions are held every Wednesday evening at the neighbouring Pizza Pazzani restaurant (at Westergasfabriek).

Our full guide to Free things to do in Amsterdam

Pop / Rock Concerts in Netherlands

Within Temptation – 2/3 May, Heineken Music Hall
Robbie Williams – 4/5 May, Ziggo Dome
Kenny Garrett – 8 May, Bimhuis
Neil Finn – 9 May, Carré

Julio Iglesias – 9 May, Heineken Music Hall
Katatonia – 9 May, P60 Amstelveen
New Kids On The Block – 10 May, Heineken Music Hall
Morten Harket – 11 May, Melkweg (The Max)
Bill Bailey – 12/14 May, De Meervaart
Lisa Stansfield – 14 May, Melkweg (Old Hall)
Cliff Richards – 17 May, Ziggo Dome
Rodrigo y Gabriela – 17 May, Paradiso
The Eagles – 22/23 May, Ziggo Dome
Nine Inch Nails – 27 May, Heineken Music Hall
Bobby McFerrin– 27 May, Concertgebouw
Tori Amos – 28 May, Concertgebouw
Marco Borsato – 28/30/31 May, Ziggo Dome

carre amsterdam

>>>See what's on in Amsterdam in June or other months
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