Bogota is bursting at the seams with cultural events and entertainment in 2015 – keep your finger on the pulse with our handy look at what’s in store
Now that 2015 is upon us, the festive frivolities are over and we’ve all probably already broken our promises to be healthier, quit smoking and refrain from doing lots of fun things. In that case, it’s time to have a look ahead at what the cultural calendar has in store for Bogotá in the year to come.
Luz Casal, February 13, Teatro Julio Mario Santo Domingo
One of Spain’s best-known artists, Luz Casal mixes bossa nova rhythms with the electric sounds of rock and roll, pumping out power ballads for breakfast. Many of her songs have treated difficult personal battles, including the death of her father and her struggle with breast cancer.
Pitbull, February 27, Centro de Eventos BIMA
One of the world’s most renowned urban music and pop artists makes his way to Bogotá once again, to showcase what has won him 26 awards and over 110 nominations. Best known as the go-to guy for famous artists looking to collaborate, Pitbull has made music with J-Lo, Chris Brown, Enrique Iglesias, Shakira, Christina Aguilera and Kesha, among others.
Pablo Alboran, February 28, Teatro Jorge Eliecer Gaitan
Despite his relatively short career to date, Pablo Alboran is recognised as one of the leading lights of the music scene in Spain. His three debut albums have caused waves throughout the Spanish-speaking world, making him Spain’s top-selling artist of 2011 and 2012. This will be his first visit to Colombia.
Ringo Starr & his All Starr Band, March 6, Centro de eventos BIMA
Richard Starkey, drummer of the biggest band in history, comes to Bogotá for the first time to share some of his own work. After the break-up of The Beatles, Ringo Starr went solo and set up the All Star Band in 1970, inviting famed artists from other groups to share the stage with him. As well as songs from his prolific solo career, which has seen him release 16 albums and 30 singles, he will also be rocking some of the classics from his days with The Beatles. Tickets start at $257,000.
Estereo Picnic, March 12-14, Parque 222
The line-up has now been announced, with top acts including Kings of Leon, Kasabian, Calvin Harris, Foster the People, Damian Marley, Alt-J, The Kooks, Major Lazer, La Mala Rodriguez and many, many more. Combo tickets for all three days start at $550,000 and individual day tickets start at $275,000.
Kongos, March 18, Armando Music Hall
Famed South African alternative rock-pop sensations Kongo hit up Bogota on their first Latin American tour. The four brothers are now regulars at some of the biggest alternative music festivals in the world.
James Blunt Moon Landing World Tour, March 20, Royal Center
One of this century’s most successful British artists comes to Bogota to share his dulcet pop/rock/folk sounds with the capital. Tickets start at $82,000.
Interpol, March 25, Royal Center
New York rockers Interpol close off the Latin American part of their world tour with a gig here in Bogota. Tickets start at $90,000.
Kiss 40th Anniversary World Tour, April 10, Parque Simon Bolivar
Legendary rockers Kiss return to Bogotá as part of their 40th anniversary world tour. They will perform in Argentina on April 16 and Chilean media report that they will also be playing in Santiago. Tickets start at $177,000.
Ed Sheeran X Tour, April 19, Royal Center
As part of a massive world tour, Sheeran will be in Bogota playing his acoustic classics as well as some of his newer numbers.
Orquesta Buena Vista Social Club ‘Adios’ tour, May 22, El Campin
One of the world’s best-known groups bids farewell to the world of gigging in their final tour. The legends of salsa have been delighting audiences around the world for over 16 years, and the line-up will include several of the members from the original Buena Vista Social Club album and film.
Jamming Festival, June 7, Casa Babylon
Bogota’s acclaimed dub/reggae festival is set to be big this year, with artists including Shaggy, The Skatalites, Alborosie, Green Valley and Little Pepe.
Chicago Symphony Orchestra, October 28, Teatro Mayor Julio Mario Santo Domingo
Recognised as one of the most influential symphony orchestras in the world, they will be performing works by Beethoven and Mahler. Formed in 1891, the Chicago Symphony Orchestra plays more than 150 concerts a year. Riccardo Muti, who has graced the stage in Berlin, Vienna, Munich, London, New York, Rome and numerous other cities, will be conducting.
The Rolling Stones (Medellin)
Despite being on the cards for several months now, with confirmation from Medellin’s mayor and even Keith Richards himself, there is still no confirmation of date, price or venue. However, it appears likely that the British rock legends will be in Medellin at some point in early 2015, so keep your eyes peeled if you don’t want to miss it.
Piter Albeiro: ‘Por Primera Vez’, March 6 & 7, Teatro Gimnasio Moderno
Bucaramanga’s very own stand-up star is the current holder of a fairly impressive world record – joke-telling for 101 hours straight. He returns to the Bogota stage after a six-year absence to talk about the differences between men and women.
Odin Teatret, March 11 – 21, Teatro Julio Mario Santo Domingo
Denmark’s renowned contemporary theatre troupe, started by the Italian Eugenio Barba, has been responsible for over 70 original works, which have been taken to more than 60 countries. Odin visited Colombia for the first time in 1983, as Barba has always been keen to forge a strong connection with Latin America. They will be performing their most recent offering, The Chronic Life.
Corteo by Cirque du Soleil, March 19 – April 23, Salitre Magico
The world’s most famous circus comes to the capital with “a theatrical procession of poetic characters and graceful acrobats.”
Uruguay’s Sodre National Ballet, April 17 & 18, Teatro Julio Mario Santo Domingo
One of Latin America’s longest-standing ballet companies, Sodre will be performing El Mesias, inspired by Handel. Under the direction of an Argentine choreographer, the group has, since 2010, been following an ambitious plan to develop their offering and appeal to a larger public.
The exact dates are yet to be revealed, but Bogota’s famed art marketplace will no doubt be pushing on from 2014’s version, which celebrated a decade of ARTBO. Showcasing some of the best up-and-coming local talent and with the participation of numerous renowned galleries from across the world, ARTBO is helping to put the Colombian capital on the international art map.
Premio Luis Caballero, September-November, Various galleries
Something akin to Colombia’s version of the Turner Prize, the Premio Luis Caballero sees eight artists carrying out artistic investigations throughout early 2015 and presenting their projects and works in a specific location in the city, before the winner is announced in November.
Competition for young artists, Starting in February, Hotel Wyndham
With a view to supporting young, unknown artists and giving them a chance to share their talent, the Hotel Wyndham will be showcasing the work of a different artist every month throughout 2015. Inscriptions are open until February 5, for people between 18 and 30, email [email protected] for further details.
New openings – Last year saw a number of new galleries and artistic spaces opening up throughout Bogota, evidence of the city’s ever-growing art scene. Get to know some of these places in 2015:
Misol (Carrera 7 #71-52): Supporting the development and diffusion of Latin American art, the Fundacion Misol deals with artists at various stages of their artistic processes, who are forging new paths in the world of contemporary art. Helping with strategic alliances, study and grants, and offering a space for artists to share their talent, Misol stimulates artistic exchange, both in Colombia and further afield, creating unique and innovative projects.
Salon Comunal (Carrera 3a #63-36): Having actually opened its doors towards the end of 2013, Salon Comunal has already cemented itself as one of the city’s top spaces for contemporary art. Their goal is to share experiences, information and time, creating an important artistic dialogue, with a variety of interesting artistic projects from Colombia and around the world.
El Mentidero (Calle 21 #5-59): Set in a beautiful old house in the centre of Bogota, El Mentidero offers residencies of between one week and three months to artists. This is an art gallery, an art bookshop and a market for contemporary Colombian art. For details about the residencies, email [email protected]
NADA (Carrera 6 #35-37): This is one of Cine Tonala’s offerings, with a space for local and international artists to share their work with the public every month.
Instituto de Vision (Carrera 23 #76-74): A space for research, experimentation and artistic exchange between local and international artists and markets. Through their Visionarios program they aim to revisit the history of Colombian art to give deserved credit to artists who have been left out of the country’s official recounting of art history. Instituto de Vision also has a public art program, which brings artistic proposals to urban spaces that would not traditionally be considered artistic settings.