A number of notable events take place in Brussels throughout the year.
Queen Elisabeth International Music Competition of Belgium
The prestigious "Concours Reine Elisabeth", an international music competition, takes place in the spring.This annual four-week competition usually runs from late April to early June, although dates may vary. This is one of the most famous competitions in the world and has been known to feature participants who later go on to greater success. The competition was founded in 1937 by Queen Elisabeth, who herself aspired to be a musician. The competition includes various categories, including violin, piano, composition and voice. All the competitions take place in the Palace des Beaux-Arts.
The ambitious biennial "Europalia" festival, held in June, takes each European country in turn as its theme.This 10-week festival is staged from late September to mid-December. Events include operas, orchestral, chamber and choral concerts, piano recitals, dance and theatrical performances, film screenings and art exhibitions. Although most of the daily events take place in Brussels, some performances are staged outside the capital.
Brussels' foremost festival, the marvelously colorful parade known as the "Ommegang", is celebrated in July on the Grand Place.This annual pageant is celebrated on the first Monday and Thursday in July. The pageant was founded by the magistrate of Brussels in 1549 to honor his family in the presence of Charles V. Events include a procession around the Grand Place by the residents of Brussels, as well as street musicians and costumed "peasants".
This annual month-long festival runs during September and October and includes operas, orchestral, choral and chamber concerts, piano recitals and dance performances. At least five events are organized every week in venues that include the Palais des Beaux-Arts, the Cirque Royal and the Museum of Ancient Art.
International Organ Week
This annual week-long festival takes place in late October and includes orchestral and choral concerts, and piano and organ recitals. At least one concert is held every night, with more being held on weekends. The events take place in churches and cathedrals throughout the city.
This annual ceremony is celebrated on August 9, the day before the Feast of St Lawrence. Singers, dancers and musicians parade around the town until 5pm when everyone gathers to plant the Mayboom tree at the intersection of rue des Sables and rue du Marrais.
This annual festival takes place in early July. Concerts featuring everything from classical to jazz and new wave music are held in numerous historic venues, including the Grand Place, the Ancient Belgian Theater and the Place de la Monnie.
This jazz marathon is held during May 30 to June 1 in Brussels. The jazz lovers can enjoy their favorite first rate artists perform in locations all over the city.
Map of Brussels Attractions