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Making the most of the 2011 Malmö Festival

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Making the most of the 2011 Malmö Festival
13:57 CEST+02:00
As Sweden's southern metropolis of Malmö gears up for this year's Malmö Festivalen, contributor Caroline Bursell previews some of the event's main attractions.

“I am Malmöfestivalen, your new best Swedish friend. I have all the hottest bands, first class theatre shows, extraordinary dance performances, exciting sports activities, food delicacies and unique art and design experiences.”

So reads the description on the website for the Malmö Festival, taking place Friday August 19 to Friday August 26 this year.

Ego aside, the description is accurate – an excess of popular concerts and internationally renowned guests are to fill the city streets, and all that is on offer is free for everyone to attend.

Since its start in 1985, the festival has always offered an abundance of popular concerts and internationally renowned guests which help fill the city streets with crowds looking to take advantage of the slew of free events.

This year boasts a massive assortment of well-known musical artists and performances to awaken culture in every corner of the city.

Here are a few tips to help make the most of your visit:

Music

On Friday, sisters Sierra and Bianca Casady, born and raised in the US, reconnect after years apart by making music as the eccentric pop/rock duo CocoRosie. Later on North Carolina's Sam Beam, better known as Iron & Wine, tells tales with his iconic Folk Rock rhythms.

Saturday features the ultimate line-up for head banging, with Gothenburg's Dead by April and Danish rockers Supercharger.

Los Angeles based indie ‘surf pop' band Best Coast with their touch of 60's flair and girl group sweetness adds a little sugar to on Sunday, with punk veterans NOFX performing on Monday

Midweek, go see ‘Treenigheten' or The Trinity, a vibrant combination of three personalities with roots in even West India, New York and Gothenburg. The women that form this trio offer you dance and electro music and avant-garde salsa in a “suburban Indian” culture.

Friday's acts include American hip hop icons CunninLynguists, performing rap in between measures of indie bass beats and even a well-orchestrated sample of Tchaikovsky's Violin Concerto - a distinctive performance you won't want to miss.

Culture, Art, and Design

On Saturday, catch Future Shorts, a monthly short film festival born in London in 2003.

Come Sunday night, gamers can break out their costumes and virtual personalities to compete against other video gamers in “Cosplay” combat.

For a startling theatre experience to ignite your senses, see “Blood Wedding” by Spanish poet and dramatist Federico García Lorca, at central venue Palladium on Monday.

Newcomers Garbage Ass are a dance group that formed in March of this year, and have practiced weekly since to bring you a popping performance of lyrical hip hop on Tuesday.

Irish artist Kianoosh Vahabi presents an elegant reflection over Malmö's gothic Saint Peter's church and exciting video projections in the town square that can be seen all week – be there to fully experience the elements of musicality and meditation in his art.

For those who have never been to Malmö, Malmö Panorama is an opportunity to get to know the city like never before – the photos in this exhibition (which is open all week) showcases brand new angles and documents incredible city views in stunning detail.

Japanese artist Misaki Kawai creates a monumental masterpiece, transforming a super ramp into a wave (with up to at least 200 square meters of painted surface) that she aims for visitors to not only admire but also interact with – dive in from the very first Friday.

Food and Drink

Visit the 60's tent for classic Swedish dishes to go with a taste of equally timeless song and dance, or visit the delicacy-filled booths at the Posthusplatsen venue when the continuous festival activities call for an energy boost.

Meet with TV4's cooks on Sunday to learn how to make kafta, falafel, baklava and more herb-rich snacks from the Middle East, and then join organic enthusiasts “Raw Food House” for lunch on Monday to hear about the raw food lifestyle, how to go about it and the benefits of eating raw food.

And oyster lovers take note: for the first time in twenty years the Swedish Oyster Opening Championship is to be held over the weekend, a sight to see when picking up tips for the dinner table or a fun challenge if you decide you have what it takes.

Enjoy!

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