Painting of Carl Lohse "small town"

Top events in winter

Advertisement C hristmas and winter – it’s that time of year again, when we like to snuggle up on the sofa with a mug of hot cocoa or a glass of punch, surrounded by family and friends. But, of course, there are also plenty of good reasons to wrap up warm and venture out of the house during the months of December, January and February. Here are a few of the unmissable events coming up:

Eiswelt Dresden: A sculpture spectacular in sub-zero temperatures

The "Nutcracker" balett as ice figures

Eiswelt Dresden, one of the world’s largest covered ice and snow sculpture exhibitions, opens its doors to the public in late November. More than 1,000 square metres of floor space at the ZEITENSTRÖMUNG exhibition site have been given over to a winter wonderland in which visitors of all ages can walk among finely sculpted and beautifully illuminated art works in ice. Based on Christmas, winter and Dresden motifs, they are between two and eight metres high, and some of them can even be climbed on. 25 international artists, including world and European champions in the discipline of ice and snow carving, have transformed more than 400 tons of the frozen material into a dazzling world of wonderment. With an ambient temperature of -8°C inside, you are advised to wrap up warm.

When? Open daily 25/11/17 – 25/02/18, 10am to 6pm
Where? ZEITENSTRÖMUNG® Dresden (Hall 12), Königsbrücker Strasse 96, 01099 Dresden
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Carl Lohse, Expressionist: Powerful visual testimonies from the post-war period

Painting of Carl Lohse "small town"

The painter Carl Lohse (1895 – 1965) was a soldier and POW in the First World War. In October 1919, he settled in Bischofswerda near Dresden, where he found financial support and an environment in which art was once again beginning to blossom. Between 1919 and 1921, he produced in quick succession a brilliant body of work that included portraits, landscapes and cityscapes. Lohse experimented with the bold use of colour and with the different styles of expressionism, cubism and futurism, all the way through to pure abstraction. The main focus of the exhibition in the Albertinum is on the pictures from the years around 1920. Also on display are works that emerged after the founding of the GDR in 1949 and which show that this independent-minded artist refused to submit to the doctrine of socialist realism.

When? Open daily 15/12/17 – 15/04/18, 10am to 6pm (except Mondays and 24/12/17); special opening hours on 01/01/18, 12 noon to 6pm
Where? Albertinum, Tzschirnerplatz 2, 01067 Dresden
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Dresdner Rauhnächte: Medieval-themed market in the Stallhof

Dresdner Rauhnächte: Medieval-themed market in the Stallhof

After the peaceful, contemplative Christmas period, it’s time once again for worldly pleasures, and where better to find them than the historic Stallhof (former stables) of the Dresden Residenzschloss? Only a few minutes away from the Frauenkirche and Neumarkt, a medieval fair is held here at the turn of the year. While blacksmiths, ropemakers and woodturners ply their traditional crafts, you can purchase a snack or haggle with stallholders. On the stage, entertainment is provided in the form of raucous musicians, jugglers and fire-breathers. Children can follow Grimm’s fairy tales on a wooden cart. And then there are the fortune tellers to provide an insight into what the New Year might hold in store.

When? Open every day 27/12/17 – 30/12/17, 11am to 9pm, and 02/01/18 – 06/01/18, 11am to 7pm
Where? Stallhof (Historic Stable Yard) in the Dresden Residenzschloss (Royal Palace), Augustusstrasse 1, 01067 Dresden
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9th Dresdner Neujahrssingen: A colourful celebration of song

the audience athe "Dresdner Neujahrssingen"

Now into its ninth year, Dresdner Neujahrssingen has established itself as a regular part of the New Year in the city. The unifying theme this time – Farben (Colours) – has been chosen to reflect a common thread among the bands and artistes who include the Red Hot Chili Peppers, Green Day and Silbermond (Silver Moon) and among the songs with titles derived from a broad colour palette. Paint It Black, White Flag and Forever in Blue Jeans are just a few of the numbers we can expect to hear performed in January. The exact set list is a secret until the evening, but one thing is certain – it’s going to be an occasion on which the Who’s Who of Dresden’s nightclub scene and pub singers of the city will be in fine vocal form as they belt out anthems and croon ballads. Be there or be square!

When? 05/01/18 and 06/01/18, 8pm on both occasions
Where? Alter Schlachthof, Gothaer Strasse 11, 01097 Dresden
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FIS Cross-Country Sprint World Cup 2018: Ready, set, go!

the skyline of the old town of Dresden

In mid-January, fans will have the opportunity to watch winter sports live against the backdrop of Dresden’s famous skyline. For the first time in the history of cross-country skiing, a World Cup event is to be contested in Dresden, and the world’s top cross-country skiers will be competing for championship points on the banks of the Elbe. The races will be staged on a 1.4km track, with plenty of great vantage points for spectators to cheer on the contestants. The start and finish line are on the Elbe embankment adjacent to the Carola Bridge. The Königsufer area, where the Filmnächte festival takes place each summer, will be transformed into a huge ski arena. The individual sprint championship will be contested on Saturday 13th January, while the women’s and men’s team sprints will take place the following day. So, keep your fingers crossed that there will be enough snow and that the thermometer stays low enough to provide ideal conditions for the skiers.

When? 13/01/18 – 14/01/2018
Where? Ski Arena on the Königsufer, 01097 Dresden
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DRESDEN 1945: Relive history in 360 degrees

The premises of "Dresden 1945"

The panoramas of Yadegar Asisi are now famous throughout Germany. With DRESDEN 1945, the artist has recreated a particularly bleak chapter in the history of the Elbe metropolis, namely the massive air raid in the latter stage of the Second World War and its consequences. In this 360-degree panorama, imagined from the tower of the Rathaus, the city is a scene of almost complete destruction. Everywhere are mounds of debris from which columns of smoke rise. An ominous soundtrack atmospherically underscores the tragic nature of this detailed portrayal. DRESDEN 1945 was awarded the German Design Award Special in 2016. It not only recalls the bombing of the Saxon state capital but also serves to commemorate the destruction of other European cities such as Rotterdam, Coventry and Warsaw. A multimedia companion exhibition to the panorama provides a historical outline of the Second World War and the era.

When? Open daily 13/01/18 – 22/04/18, Mon-Fri, 10am to 5pm; Sat, Sun and public holidays, 10am to 6pm (last admission, one hour before closing)
Where? Asisi Panometer Dresden, Gasanstaltstrasse 8b, 01237 Dresden
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Bilder der Erde Festival (Pictures of the Earth Festival): Adventure around the globe

German children’s television presenter Willi Weitzel is holdimg a lamb

In recent years, the Pictures of the Earth travel lectures have become something of a crowd puller in Dresden, and not only for inveterate globetrotters. Now these authentic and visually stunning travelogues from around the world will be presented for the first time during the Bilder der Erde Festival. For a whole weekend early in the New Year, the Alter Schlachthof will be the venue for intriguing travel reports, for travel photography and video workshops, for music and for culinary delights from all around the world, with a broad appeal to travellers, both seasoned and aspiring. Highlights of the programme include Markus Lanz’s multimedia show of his Greenland expedition and Willis wilde Wege (Willi’s Wild Ways), a travelogue by radio and children’s television presenter Willi Weitzel.

When? 19/01/18 – 21/01/18
Where? Alter Schlachthof, Gothaer Strasse 11, 01097 Dresden
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Dresdner Winterzauber & Dresdner Winter: Fun on ice for the whole family

Fresh pyramid Cake is made at the "Dresden Winter"

During the winter months, sporting aces and daredevil skaters can practice to their heart’s content on two temporary ice rinks. One of these will be laid out on the Altmarkt itself. Surrounded by Alpine wooden huts, Gaudi-Treff and Stiegl Alm beer marquees, Dresdner Winterzauber (Dresden Winter Magic) is a popular rendezvous for young and old alike, a place to skate or to eat and drink as others merrily glide along.

The second pop-up skating rink is at the romantic Konzertplatz Weisser Hirsch adjacent to the Dresdner Heide. 800 square metres of ice, curling alleys, fire bowls and an authentic beer garden atmosphere make the Dresdner Winter rink in the hillside district of Weisser Hirsch a popular outing for local families. The whole experience is complemented by a varied programme of events, with craft and street food markets, a puppet theatre, Sunday brunch in the winter lodge, skiing and ice skating courses and after-work sessions on the ice.

Dresdner Winterzauber (Dresden Winter Magic)
When? Open daily 19/01/18 – 04/03/18, 10am to 10pm
Where? Altmarkt, 01067 Dresden
Further information:

Dresdner Winter
When? Open daily 17/11/17 – 25/02/18, Mon – Fri, 2pm to 9pm; Sat, Sun, public holidays, Saxony school holidays, 10am to 9pm; Christmas Eve, 10am to 4pm
Where? Konzertplatz am Weissen Hirsch, Stechgrundstrasse, 01324 Dresden
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SemperOpernball & SemperOpenairball: Waltzing on Saxon parquet flooring (and paving)

The hall of the Semperoper during the "Semperopernball"

Because Vienna is not exactly around the corner and Dresden has its own illustrious opera house, the city has also been staging its own opera ball since 2006. A special additional feature is the SemperOpenairball which extends the opportunity to dance the night away in three-four time from the lucky 2,500 guests inside the opera house to the 15,000-strong crowd outside on Theaterplatz. The programme starts at around 6pm with the arrival on the red carpet of stars of stage and screen as well as VIPs from politics and business. At the festive opening gala in the Semper Opera House (starting at around 9pm), various honours are conferred on personalities drawn from the worlds of politics, sport, society and culture, including the Dresden Order of Saint George for extraordinary services to society. And when the local debutantes and their partners have strutted out onto the floor, the ball is declared officially open!

When? 26/01/18
Where? Semperoper and Theaterplatz, Theaterplatz 2, 01067 Dresden
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Weisse Nacht (White Night): Saxon winegrowing tradition in winter garb

snow covered paths at the Castle Wackerbarth

Saxony’s most famous prince-elector, Augustus the Strong, also appreciated the charming surroundings of his capital city, commissioning the construction of various country residences and pleasure palaces just a few kilometres from Dresden’s baroque centre. Schloss Wackerbarth in Radebeul scores double marks in the attractiveness stakes for its romantic setting among vineyards and for its own production of excellent still and sparkling wines. At the beginning of February, the public part of the estate extends an invitation to an elegant wine-tasting evening. The historic wine cellar will be the venue for growers from the region to talk about their wines and crack open bottles for sampling. Scrumptious food, an artistic programme and a DJ will ensure that this is an occasion for all the senses.

When? 03/02/18 at 8pm
Where? Schloss Wackerbarth, Wackerbarthstrasse 1, 01445 Radebeul
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