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Stroossefestival – clowns, brass bands and a hippo
Street Animation

Stroossefestival – clowns, brass bands and a hippo

by Sarita RAO 4 min. 10.09.2021
The Strassen festival showcases street animation and art, acrobats and circus performers plus plenty of live music
The 10th Stroossefestival sees Ghetto Blaster perform Cold Play and Ed Sheeran songs on the streets of Strassen
The 10th Stroossefestival sees Ghetto Blaster perform Cold Play and Ed Sheeran songs on the streets of Strassen
Photo credit: Ghetto Blaster

A Spanish clown, acrobats performing on suspended steel, dancers turning household chores into an argentine tango spectacle with flames, and a huge hippo called Nellie will be taking over Strassen this weekend.

Postponed from last year due to the pandemic, the Stroossefestival which kicks off at 15.00 on 11 September promises a plethora of music, street art, theatre, comedy and traditional circus.

Children will enjoy Spanish clown Alejandro Muñoz, whose show is about a surprise party where the guests don’t arrive, or German transformist Anita Bertolami, who uses her body (legs, head and stomach) to create new characters that develop a life of their own, changing personality and taking her audience into a world of stories.

An fire-act from a previous Stroossefestival
An fire-act from a previous Stroossefestival
Charlot Kuhn

Argentine tango company, Bilbobasso, puts a comic spin on domestic bliss gone wrong with a fire act centring around a couple turning daily chores such as washing and vacuuming into a domestic bullfight filled with flames, smoke and colourful sparks.  

A group of acrobats will perform on suspended steel, walking, flying and using counterbalance, whilst another group of artists plays on the theme that the circus is all about taking risks and that it is normal to make mistakes. The Zanara circus will be performing their usual nostalgia circus for families inside the big top.

Acrobats will perform gravity-defying moves on suspended steel bars
Acrobats will perform gravity-defying moves on suspended steel bars
Cie Les Chaussons Rouges

Recycling artists, Nomadenko, will be wandering through the festival area, wearing their colourful creations made from 100% recycled materials. They’ll be making jewellery and hats from recyclable materials to hand out to passers-by.   

Dutch theatre companies will provide the animal magic walking through the streets of Strassen, with Nellie the hippo, who is grumpy, curious and even nerdy but can also sing and dance. 

Two pesky meerkats, Pete and Polly, will be on the look-out for a new tribe among the festival-goers.

Top-brass music

Brass musicians will take centre stage, and sax and drum combo Ghetto Blaster will be belting out Cold Play, Pharrell Williams and Ed Sheeran numbers on Rue des Romains, whilst Hunneg-Strëpp, a nine-piece brass band, aims to get people dancing on the streets to hip-hop, rock, pop and 90s hits. 

Local singer-songwriter Serge Tonnar, fresh from his one-man-with-guitar performances “Fool on the Hill” in Boulaide, will deliver some thought-provoking songs on tolerance and life in the times of Covid. 

Nine-piece brass band Hunneg-Strëpp hope to get people dancing to hip-hop, rock and 90s classics
Nine-piece brass band Hunneg-Strëpp hope to get people dancing to hip-hop, rock and 90s classics
Benji Ewerling

Captain Mullebutz will play traditional Luxembourgish songs for younger children in the circus big top, with sign language also provided.  

String quartet, Yllana, will inject some humour into classical music from Mozart, Chopin and Paganini by dancing, laughing and turning their violins into mandolins. Big band sounds including soul, pop and rock will be provided by Brass Machine.

Festival history 

Strassen commune blazed a trail when in 2001, its Committee of Culture decided to organise a local event inspired by the Wallonia-based Chassepierre Street Arts festival, to get locals out of their homes to discover wonders at every corner of the municipality.

The idea was to show that contrary to what some might believe, Strassen isn't a "commune dortoir" (dormitory town) or a municipality where residents work and socialise in the city and only return to sleep, but has a vibrant culture and social life of its own. 

Strassen is a multi-cultural municipality, where 105 different nationalities live, and the festival has become an important biennial event that brings people closer together regardless of age and cultural background.

There will be 16 different acts, and 26 performances, based in various indoor and outdoor venues in Strassen around the Rue des Romains, Parc de l’Independence and around the Cultural Centre Paul Barblé.

An interactive map on this webpage shows the location of acts and bands and the times of performances. 

If you get hungry there will be a gourmand village, where meals and drinks are prepared by local associations including the chess, football, volleyball and karate clubs - an initiative to encourage residents to get to know their neighbours. 

Covid-check sites

The Covid-check system will be in place for entry, so bring your covid vaccination passport (digital or paper copies accepted). Children under six years do not need to show a negative test but rapid antigen testing is available onsite for children or adults who are not vaccinated.

Bus lines 8, 16, 222 and 230 will bring you within metres of the festival. 

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Just outside the city limits, this small commune is home to 115 nationalities, an indoor pool and wellness centre and quite a few shops and restaurants
Strassen is home to 115 nationalities and almost 10,000 residents Photo: Charlot Kuhn