Opening of city hall Antwerp.

On Saturday June 18th, shortly after noon under a bright sunshine, presenters Carl Huybrechts and Esohe Weyden kicked off a grand and well-attended folk festival on the “Grote Markt” celebrating the reopening of Antwerp’s renovated city hall. The festivities could be followed live on ATV. An extensive Sylvester team steered everything in the right direction and provided an unforgettable show with many acts, fun entertainment, Radio Minerva, surprising music performances, DJs, an impressive inauguration moment and, as the apotheosis, a real sing-along musical from the city hall. Massive numbers of Sinjors and tourists experienced a day they will long remember. 

For more than four years, the city hall was closed for an intensive and thorough restoration and renovation. But the wait was absolutely worth it, as the monumental Renaissance building looks magnificent and has been transformed into an open house for all Antwerp residents that meets all current comfort and sustainability requirements. In short: the heritage pearl with a rich past is ready for a vibrant future.

The inauguration party, organized to mark the reopening of the city hall, was vibrant too. Young and old enjoyed themselves: people had their dreams canned, enjoyed free cupcakes and were amazed by the performances of the flag-flyers, the City Drummers and the singers of Classical on the Schelde. People happily danced along to the records played by Radio Minerva from their pop-up studio in the town hall across the “Grote Markt”, and the audience experienced goose bumps when six guests of honour and the mayor unlocked the combination lock after which the gates of the town hall finally opened again. Afterwards, when the legendary Strangers joined the mayor from “’t Schoon Verdiep” to perform the song “Antwarpe”, the entire “Grote Markt” and all the adjoining terraces sang along wholeheartedly. Later in the evening when it was dark, the façade of the city hall became the setting for a unique sing-along musical. The beautiful light and singing spectacle was much enjoyed by the audience present.

The extremely varied event in the city hall and on the “Grote Markt”, which lasted for more than 10 hours with all kinds of acts, animations and musical performances going on in different places at the same time, demanded a lot of preparation, planning and coordination from the Sylvester team. But thanks to our expertise, commitment and experience, it turned out to be a very successful inauguration. To the question “Where is that party?” on June 18th, there was only one correct answer: on Antwerp’s “Grote Markt” where the renovated city hall was inaugurated.


Stad Antwerpen
Aftermovie, Public events