Hamburg: Cultural Metropolis

Under fresh winds into the second half of 2008

Hamburg, 2008 (HHT): The metropolis on the River Elbe is a great stage amazingly presenting itself 365 days as a true diva. It´s not only the spectacular harbour scenery and the numerous attractions that make this boom town in northern Germany simply irresistible. Every year, thousands of visitors come to Hamburg to experience world-class musicals, exhibitions, shows, music festivals, and the best in opera or dance performances.

Each year more and more events and cultural programmes add to the entertainment variety that Hamburg offers. From the famous „Harbour Birthday“ each year in May to the colourful backdrop of the 70s at the popular music parade „Schlagermove“ and the traditional „gumboot throwing competition“ at Hamburg´s „British Days“, Hamburg is a big party all year.

A class of its own: Hamburg Ballet Days
An opera season without the feastful Hamburg Ballet Days is beyond imagination. For more then 30 years this event has become a tradition. Hamburg´s annual cultural itinerary though still astounds its audience with outstanding debuts, international artists and highly reputed performances. The most spectacular highlight in this summer: In the course of the 34th Hamburg Ballet Days in July 2008, the Moscow Stanislawsky Musical Theatre under the management of chief conductor Felix Korobov, gave a guest performance of the legendary version of Vladimir Burmeister´s „Schwanensee“ in the Hamburg State Opera.

Hamburg Cruise Days 2008 – Luxury liners were on course for the city
Cruise ships were the talk of the town in Hamburg between July 30th and August 3rd. Hamburg Cruise Days 2008 saw the port transformed for the first time into a maritime theatre for the friends of cruise romance hosting five cruise ships at a time at the landing piers in the city centre. The Port of Hamburg is gaining in importance as the cruise shipping hub in Northern Europe. In 2007 around 700,000 holidaymakers in Germany opted for a vacation on the high seas. Of those, no less than 140,000 passengers chose the port metropolis of Hamburg as the starting and finishing points of their holiday trip.

Hamburg Cruise Days 2008
Hamburg Cruise Days 2008 - Photo credits: Photo:

Rock and Pop Festivals in the city
From 15th until 17th of August, the Dockville-Festival on the Elbe Island „Wilhelmsburg“ south of Hamburg featured a colourful art and music programme, ranging from Hip Hop to Punk Rock offering young talents a platform to perform in front of an enthusiastic crowd. The headers of this festival were renowned bands as Northern Germany´s Hip Hop legends „Fettes Brot“ and DJ „Feadz“.
From 25th to 27th of September it was the Reeperbahnfestival, already a legend after only three years of its founding that rocked the city. Offering a forum for „New International Music“ in the spectacular scenery of the Reeperbahn, Hamburg´s worldfamous „mile of sin“, 150 bands from all over the world performed for a three-day-ticket of only Euro 55. At the same time, the biggest rock poster exhibition „Flatstock Europe“ toke place on the central plaza of the Reeperbahn, the „Spielbudenplatz“. The entrance was free!

Music, touching the soul – Verdi Weeks at the Hamburg State Opera
„Rigoletto“, „La Traviata“, „Un ballo in Maschera“ are names that enthuse opera fans. The operas of the Italian genius composer Guiseppe Verdi are real treasures in classical music. For the seasonal prelude of the Hamburg State Opera, the Verdi Weeks toke place from the 6th of September to the 4th of October, presenting seven of his most popular operas. International stars as Alexandru Agache, Joseph Calleja, Alexia Voulgaridou and Angela Marambio presented their masterly voices making the Verdi Weeks an unforgettable festival of voices.

New in the urban jungle: Disney´s Tarzan in Hamburg
Hit alarm in Hamburg: next to the successfully running musicals Disney´s „Lion King“and Udo Juergen´s „I have never been to New York“, a third musical this autumn will have its premier in Hamburg. From 18th of October, Disney´s „Tarzan“ will capture the heart of Jane and the audience in the new musical hit in the Neue Flora theatre. The two main characters of this jungle fairy tale were casted in a popular German television show. Screaming teen fans will be included in the musical enjoyment when Swedish born Anton Zetterholm shows muscles and acrobatic ability apart from the amazing light effects and fancy costumes that the musical will present. And last but not least it´s the great musician Phil Collins that will make this musical a new smash in Hamburg.

Spreading amazing enchantment: Christmas Markets in Hamburg
From 24th of November until 31st of December, the heart of the Hanseatic city will be filled with the bright shine of an abundant Christmas decoration. Hamburg´s central market in front of the spectacular city hall will host the most beautiful Christmas market designed by Germany´s most creative circus Roncalli. Here, wood-carvers from Tirol, ginger bread bakers from Aachen and Nuremberg, silversmiths and artists will invite to marvel, participate and to enjoy. The most exceptional kind of Chrismas market is located directly at the Spielbudenplatz on the Reeperbahn. On this sassy Christmas market called „Santa Pauli“ frivoulesly dressed angels will carry an erotic atmosphere into the Christmas season… Christmas in Hamburg simply has many faces…

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