The OUT JAZZ festival is a free open-air range of live concerts and DJ sets held throughout Lisbon every Friday and Sunday evening from May to September. Friday venues change every week, held at scenic points of the city, a hotel or museum grounds and start at 18:00. The Sunday evening concerts start at 17:00 and are held in a different public garden or park every month: in May the venue is Jardim da Estrela (near Lapa apartments/tram 28 route), whilst Anfiteatro Kiel to Amaral (Monsato park) is the chosen venue for June, Parque Eduardo VII (city centre near Marquês do Pombal) is the July venue, Jardim da Torre de Belem (Lisbon riverside) is the August venue and, Tapada das Necessidades (also on the tram 28 route) will be the venue in September. Download full details here: Lisbon Outjazz Program 2012
ROCK IN RIO
2012 is the year of ROCK IN RIO-LISBOA, the festival that takes place every two years with lots of major international stars such as Lenny Kravitz, Stevie Wonder, Smashing Pumpkins, Maroon 5, Metallica and Bruce Springsteen. Held at Parque da Bela Vista (Beautiful View), one of the largest open areas located within the Eastern city limits of Lisbon, the park comprises an area of 85,000 m² and is transformed into a “City of Rock” during this event. This year’s Rock in Rio will be held on the 25/26 May and 1/2/3 June. Using public transport is recommended as traffic and parking spaces in and around the venue will be restricted: metro (Linha Vermelha/Bela Vista) or Carris buses ( 5, 10, 17, 21, 22, 708, 755, 794). Full details at: www.rockinriolisboa.sapo.pt
Lisbon explodes into an all-night party on the 12-13 June, for the feast of SANTO ANTONIO, its patron saint – the Avenida da Liberdade (Liberty Avenue) hosts a parade /competition of folk music and dance between the city’s bairros (districts); the streets of old quarters such as Santos/Madragoa, Alfama/Castelo and Bairro Alto get decorated with colourful lanterns and streamers hanging from one building to another; the locals open their houses to sell wine and sardines or grill them at street stands; there are people dancing to live bands on many of the cities squares; and men give “mangericos” (pots of lucky basil with a poem) to their sweethearts! The nights of São João (23-24 June) or São Pedro (28-29 June) are also celebrated, although the party is somewhat more sedate!
COOL JAZZ FEST
The motto for the COOL JAZZ FESTIVAL is summer nights, a beautiful garden and excellent music sound! The 2012 festival features leading contemporary singers and instrumentalists who will be performing open-air in Oeiras (easy to reach by train from Cais do Sodré from Lisbon city centre and then a local bus to the venue). This year’s opening number will be a performance by Sting on the 29th June at Parque dos Poetas (a larger venue for a larger audience); and the remaining concerts, which include Al Jareau and Buena Vista Social Club, will be held on the 4, 8, 19, 21 and 22 July in the Palace of the Marquis of Pombal Gardens. See last year’s video. Full details at http://www.cooljazzfest.com
And let’s not forget the annual OPTIMUS ALIVE festival on July 13, 14 and 15. This year it will bring bands like Radiohead and the Cure amongst others, and it will be held on the riverside at Algés, an area quite easy to reach by bus, metro and train. Full details at: http://www.optimusalive.com
Last but not least, Portugal’s national song FADO has recently been added to UNESCO’s list of World’s Intangible Cultural Heritage. It is mournful and sad and mostly about “saudade” (longing), sung in late-night establishments throughout Lisbon and accompanied by guitars. You will find many of these establishments in the Bairro Alto and Alfama quarters of the city, and the golden rule is: if it looks like a dark and dingy hole in the wall, it will probably offer the most genuine experience. Avoid the places where a waiter comes to the door and invites you in, as these are more tourist-orientated. There is also a Fado museum in Lisbon.