April in Buenos Aires

(Photo by Justin Ornellas)

Easter, autumn, and a whole lot of cultural activities come together in one of the busiest months of the year, in terms of entertainment and leisure at least. With three long weekends and some of the city’s most important cultural events, such as the BAFICI film festival and the international book fair, Buenos Aires is bound to be abuzz with things to do in every city corner. Below are some of the highlighted events to get ready for this month!

1984– Directed by Tim Robbins- The San Martín Theatre will be welcoming renowned American actor Tim Robbins this month as he lands in the city to direct a version of 1984 for the stage. Throughout the following weeks the theatre will be screening some of his best known films in anticipation of the event.

BAFICI-11th -22nd of April.- One of the most popular cultural events in Buenos Aires is the annual international independent film festival (BAFICI). Presenting over four hundred films by a great variety of  both local and international directors, the festival is a cultural melting pot with something for everyone. Check out the program and buy tickets here.

FIFBA Folklore Festival 13th-15th of April- The Buenos Aires International Folklore Festival takes place annually in La Plata and is a great place for music enthusiasts to become acquainted with a part of the local identity through the native culture. More information here.

Feria Internacional del Libro 19th of April-7th of May- Another of Buenos Aires´s most popular cultural events of the year is the international book fair which takes place each year at La Rural in Palermo. More information on readings and seminars here.

Also, don’t miss some of the great exhibits that are being held at the MALBA (Museum of Latin American Art) and the Colon Theater’s upcoming productions, find their Autumn program here.

Concerts:

Gipsy Kings– 3rd of April- Flamenco Pop group Gipsy Kings will be staging a live show at the Gran Rex Theatre. Tickets here. 

The Quilmes Rock festival will be taking place at the River Plate Stadium featuring the following acts:

3rd of April- Foo Fighters, MGMT, Band of Horses, Crosses, Jauria.

4th of April- Foo Fighters, Arctic Monkeys, TV on the radio, Massacre.

7th of April- Charly García, Fito Paez.

Tickets available here.

Bjork will be playing five shows presenting her album Biophilia Residency to the public. On the 6th ,9th , 12th , and 15th of April she will play intimate concerts at the centro de exposiciones and on the  21st she will be staging a larger concert at GEBA. Tickets here.

Jane’s Addiction– 10th of April- The legendary alternative nineties rock band returns to the city to present their new album, “The Great Escape Artist”, and a selection of the band’s classics.  Tickets here.

Roger Hodgson-19th of April- Supertramp’s front man Roger Hodgson will be presenting “Breakfast in America Tour 2012” at the Lawn Tennis Club. Tickets here.

Roxette -24th April- Once again the Swedish duo visit the country to satisfy Roxette-hungry Argie fans at the Luna Park. Tickets here.

Bob Dylan 26th-30th of April- Rock legend Bob Dylan will be presenting 4 shows at the Gran Rex Theatre. Tickets here.

Cortázar-Perec Biennial

(Staging for “La vie mode d’emploi”, written by Georges Perec. Photo by Raya y punto.)

Writing, photography and jazz come together today and tomorrow at the Cortázar-Perec Biennial, where the work of two renowned authors, the Argentine Julio Cortázar and the French Georges Perec, will be celebrated. The event will consist of academic talks on literary subjects at La Academia del Sur, and a series of film projections, a photography exhibit, and a jazz concert at the Centro Cultural San Martín.

For the biennial, three stories by Cortázar and three stories by Perec will be distributed for free on Av. Corrientes. Additionally, the city`s bares notables will be receiving copies of Rayuela and Cuentos Completos by Cortazar.

Find the full program here.

This Week in Buenos Aires

Monday

(Photo by pablitux)

Head to the Museo Nacional Ferroviario (the national train museum) near Retiro. Monday-Friday 10:30am-4pm. Avda. Libertador 405, Retiro.

Later on in the evening stop by Museo Casa Carlos Gardel in Abasto for some live tango music at 6.30pm. Jean Jaurès 735,  Abasto. 4964 2015.

English blues and rock singer  Joe Cocker will be playing at Estadio Luna Park. Tickets here.

Tuesday

(Photo by gandalf.blanco)

Pablo Siquier is an Argentine artist known for his impressive murals and installations. Throughout March a special exhibit held at the Centro Cultural Recoleta will be displaying some of his more experimental work from the eighties and nineties. Junín 1930, Recoleta. 4803 1040. Open: Mon-Fri 2pm-9pm, Sat-Sun 10am-9pm.

Later on, stop by Sugar and meet other fellow travelers at the Beerlingual Bilingual Trivia Night from 7pm-9pm. Costa Rica 4619¸ Palermo.

Roger Waters, the British legend that was once part of Pink Floyd, will be presenting The Wall at the River Plate Stadium!  Tickets here.

Creedence Clearwater Revival will be playing for their loyal local fans at Estadio Luna Park. Tickets here.

Wednesday

(Cortazae photo from pedrugo flick acount.)

The Cortazar-Perec Biennial  is being held this week at the Centro Cultural San Martín where a photography exhibit  and screenings of films that adapted the literary work of these authors to the screen, can be enjoyed. Av. Corrientes 1530, Downtown. See the full program here. 

In th evening head to the stunning Colón Theatre for a special viewing of La Pasión según San Marcos, an opera by Osvaldo Golijov.Cerrito 628, Downtown. 4378 7100

Thursday

(Metropolis by Fritz Lang)

The Museo de Arte Decorativo is showcasing a special exhibit on oriental art. Additionally,  the museum´s marvelous collection of European and Oriental paintings and sculptures, the great hall,  the impressive staircase, and the smart café make it well worth a visit.  Av.del Libertador 1902, Recoleta.  4801-8248. Tuesdays to Sundays from 2.00pm to 7.00pm.  Guided tours in English are available every day at 2pm.

Book your place for the Fierro Hotel’s Thursday wine tasting and sample some great Argentine wines, chosen by the president of the Argentine Sommelier Association Andres Rosberg and in-house Sommelier Martin Bruno.  Tastings cost 25 USD per person and are limited to 7 people. Soler 5862, Palermo. 3220-6800.

At 10pm Fritz Lang´s Metropolis will be screened with a live orchestra at the MALBA. Avenida Figueroa Alcorta 3415, Recoleta. 4808-6500.

Friday

(Photo by Argentina Polo Day)

Book your place with Argentina Polo Day and spend the day in the outskirts of the city exploring the world of polo. The day includes a wine tasting with ‘empanadas’, horseback riding, a Polo Match, polo lessons, the opportunity to talk to coaches and professional players, a typical asado, and leisure time by the swimming pool. More information here.

At 7pm, the Museo Nacional de Bellas Artes will be staging  a contemporary music show.  Av.Libertador 1473, Recoleta.

Another option is heading to Ill Ballo del Mattone in Palermo for some homemade pasta and live jazz at 8pm. Gorriti 5950, Palermo.

Saturday and Sunday

(Photo by… simple me)

On Saturday there will be a picnic from 11am-2pm at the Lagos Bosques de Palermo to celebrate World Water Day.

On Saturday  evening, starting at 9pm, there will be a videogame exhibit at Club Cultural Matienzo. Matienzo 2424, Belgrano.

On Sunday at 4.30pm there will be a unique presentation of drums and Japanese flutes at the Japanese gardens in Palermo. Av. Figueroa Alcorta and Av. Caseres.

Buenos Aires Shakespeare Festival

(Photo by tonynetone)

Throughout the week, until Sunday the 19th, the city will be celebrating the famous English playwright at the 2nd annual Shakespeare festival. Free activities including calligraphy lessons, performances, workshops, and more will be held in different venues and theatres around the city. Additionally there will be a recreation of a medieval village in Buenos Aires Polo Circo (on Combate de los Pozos and Juan de Garay streets) where visitors will be able to enjoy Elizabethan designs, archery, dancing, cuisine, amongst other attractions. Information on activities and theatre productions during the Shakespeare Festival are available here.

The Argentine Gaucho

(Photo by tim ellis)

The gaucho is one of the few local characters which the national culture has adopted as truly Argentine. Allthough the origins of these nomadic cattle herders is ambiguous it is generally accepted that they appeared after colonization as the offspring of Natives with Europeans. A few things characterized this new generation of locals; one was their skill riding horses and handling cattle, another was their nomadic nature. They were also proficient with knives, boleadoras and guitars and many of them were payadores, which means they recited poetic stories about their lives to the strum of the guitar. It is the gauchesque payadas that led to the posterior gauchesque literature that was key to transforming the Gaucho into an emblematic national character.

The image of the gaucho was not always positive. For a long time they were considered to be outlaws and rebels, and as social castaways they were readily sent to fight the civil wars. Once the wars were over, there was no place in society for gauchos, so they were culturally resignified. The parallel influx of immigrants to the city had created a need for a national identity, and for the countryside to become appealing as it was the land that needed to be populated. Amidst this context, gauchesque literature, which portrayed the life, tradition and used the language of the gauchos, found its perfect place. From then on, through the local literature of emblematic authors such as José Hernandez who wrote the famous Martín Fierro, Leopoldo Lugones who wrote La Guerra Gaucha and  Ricardo Güiraldes, who wrote Don Segundo Sombra, amongst others, the gaucho acquired a mythical place in society.

Popular literary adaptations to film were also made from gauchesque novels, completing the insertion of this rustic character into the Argentine culture. Some noticeable examples are Juan Moreira adapted to film by Leonardo Fabio, Los Hijos de Fierro, which makes a parallelism between Peron and Martin Fierro, by Pino Solanas and Don Facundo Sombra adapted to film by Manuel Antín.

Buenos Aires for Bibliophiles

(Photo by br1dotcom)

Buenos Aires is known for its literature and avid readers. Anyone who has walked the streets or traveled in the public transport system will readily agree that the city is full of bookshops and bookworms which is why it’s no surprise that it was picked as the 2011 book capital of the world.  Naturally, it is also a great place to buy books.

Those looking for  rare finds, first editions, and foreign language books should stop by the bookstores on Avenida Corrientes and Avenida de Mayo.The Plaza Italia book fair is also a good place to find unusual picks at an extra good price as everything they sell is second hand, whilst antique books can be found mostly in San Telmo.

For those looking for both a place to acquire these beautiful noble objects and to enjoy them over coffee we  recommend the following bookstores:

 

Ateneo Grand Splendid: This impressive bookstore is considered to be one of the most beautiful in the world.  Set in what was once the Grand Splendid Theatre,  and conserving its grandiose architecture whilst adapting its function to a bookstore, it is one of the city jewels.

The balconies, the original velvet curtains, and the cupola, on which an allegoric representation of peace was painted after world war one, can all be enjoyed whilst browsing for books or having something to eat on the once stage.

Av. Santa Fe 1860, Recoleta

4813-6052

 

Opening Hours:

Mon-Thu 9am-10pm

Fri-Sat 9am-12pm

Sun 12am-10pm

 

Libreria del Pasaje: This bookstore, record store and bar in Palermo offers a great selection of books, advice on what to buy, and a relaxing modern environment in which to sit and read. Additionally they have a lot of cultural events including photography and art exhibits and activities for children.

Thames 1762, Palermo

4833 6637

 

Opening Hours:

Mon-Sat 10am-10pm

Sun 2pm-9pm

 

Eterna Cadencia: Warm lighting, dark wooden furniture and a extensive selection of books can be found in this bookstore and publishing house. The spacious cafe is a great place to sit and read or even to just stop by for a coffee break.

Honduras 5574, Palermo

4774-4100

info@eternacadencia.com.ar

 

Opening Hours

Mon-Fri 10am-9pm

Sat-Sun   11.30am-8pm