Netherlands’ literature and music event, Crossing Border Festival, is online — and totally free

For 28 years, the Crossing Border Festival has brought Dutch and international cultural talent direct to The Hague. This year, the party will continue — fully online and totally for free. 

The festival will be host to a full lineup of jaw-dropping music and literature acts from November 3 to 8. Even better, you can take part in the festivities from the comfort of your lounge room by watching the live stream stage at Crossing Border Headquarters. Some events will even be broadcast from the stunning Theater aan het Spui.

Online is actually an arrangement that we’re totally on board with. Why? Because by broadcasting the festival online you enjoy exclusive performances every day, plus interact with a fantastic line-up of Dutch and international authors, musicians, poets, and spoken word artists. 

Even better, being online means you can choose to enjoy every single day of the festival from any city in the Netherlands. Whether you’re grooving in Groningen, lingering in Leeuwarden, or mingling in Maastricht, you can enjoy this Randstad event. Can anyone say “all-inclusive”? Crossing Border Festival can!

I’m in, now tell me what for!

Are you kidding me? There’s so much happening at the Crossing Border Festival (over 50 acts!) we can’t possibly list it all here — but I guess we can give you a little teaser. 

The full programme is split into two categories: artists and events

First up, these incredible drawcards aren’t just Dutch. The international lineup includes Antonio Scurati, Manuel Vilas, Hoda Barakat, and Michel Christie — plus heaps more!

Italian professor of literature, columnist and author, Antonio Scurati will be a drawcard on the Sunday evening. Image: ©Philippe Matsas/Opale/Leemage

Perhaps you’re in the mood for watching a live online interview with promising author Paul Mendez whose debut novel is making huge waves in England? What about getting into the brain of one of the UK’s most respected poets, Robin Robertson? 

There are huge names from across the literary scene, from established industry leaders to the most talented debutants. All the interviews are conducted live so you can even ask the authors those burning questions in the back of your mind. 

Of course, if it’s music that you’re coming for you won’t be disappointed. Up-and-coming international bands like Keeley Forsyth, Anna B Savage and Kassa Overall will feature exclusively recorded performances for you to jam out to in your pyjamas. 

Brooklyn-based “backpack jazz” artist, Kassa Overall, will hit the stage. Image: Aren Johnson/Crossing Border Festival

One event we really can’t wait for is perhaps the steamiest: an online interview with Jehnny Beth and Johnny Hostile (Savages) about their recently published erotic story collection C.A.L.M.: Crimes Against Love Memories. Is it getting hot in here or what? 

Alright, you’ve got me — how do I take part?

Even though the Crossing Border Festival has gone virtual, we still recommend you register for your favourite events to make sure that you don’t miss out. 

When you register you will choose the day(s) that you’re interested in. Registration will give you access to all the artists that are featured on that day. You’ll also receive a direct link to the live stream, extra information, the latest updates, and even a reminder on the day of the event — just in case it slips your mind. 

How much is the Crossing Border Festival 2020? 

We know, it’s hard to believe — but the Crossing Border Festival is 100% free. Gratis. On the house. Echt goedkoop, toch? (Very cheap, right?)

That’s all you need to know — so what are you doing hanging around here? Head on over to the Crossing Border Festival website to claim your spot and register for events!

Feature Image: Crossing Border Festival/Supplied

Samantha Dixon 🇦🇺
Sam isn’t great at being Dutch. Originally hailing from Australia, she came to study in the Netherlands without knowing where the country was on a map. She once accidentally ordered the entire ice-cream menu at Smullers. She still can’t jump on the back of a moving bike. But, she remains fascinated by the tiny land of tall people.



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