Swiss Culture You Can Enjoy from Home

Culture connects us all. Enjoying a piece of music, a film, or a painting cuts across boundaries, whether linguistic, national, or demographic. In these challenging times, culture and engagement are more important than ever. Not only do they help us connect with others and remind us of our shared humanity, but they can also make us happy and relaxed, and can serve as an outlet for positivity. Though arts and cultural institutions throughout both Switzerland and the United States have closed to the public during this crisis, there is an abundance of Swiss cultural content that is now available for all to enjoy from the safety and comfort of our homes.

Please continue to check this page, social media channels, and events calendar, where we will be tracking and updating these resources, for more cultural content. Please note: this is not an exhaustive list, nor are these recommendations endorsements of one service or product over another. Have you found something we’re missing? What would you like to see more of? Let us know in the comments below; we love to hear from you. So: prepare your paintbrushes, turn up the volume, or get out the microwave popcorn as you prepare to enjoy these wonderful Swiss cultural experiences from home.

We hope you continue to enjoy, stay safe, stay healthy, and #StayHome!

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Time Sensitive Events

The Sweet Indifference of the World

Instagram Live with Peter Stamm

On Monday, May 11 2020 at 4:00PM ET the Embassy of Switzerland, together with DC bookstore Solid State Books, will be hosting an Instagram Live event with Swiss author Peter Stamm. Stamm will present his novel «Die sanfte Gleichgültigkeit der Welt» (winner of the 2018 Swiss Book Prize) — The Sweet Indifference of the World in conversation with American writer GD Dess. Peter Stamm is the author of numerous novels, including To The Back of Beyond and All Days Are Night, and short-story collections. His award-winning books have been translated into more than thirty languages, he was short-listed for the 2013 Man Booker International Prize, and in 2014 he won the prestigious Friedrich Hölderlin Prize. In his newest work, the Swiss author has created a literary version of a Mobius strip: told through the eyes of Christoph, a writer haunted by his past, this thought-provoking novel exists on the borders of dream and reality, of memory and imagination. With Stamm’s signature style of poetic, deceptively simple prose, The Sweet Indifference of the World explores how history may repeat itself, not just in war or politics, but also in love and heartbreak. To participate the event, follow Solid State Book’s Instagram Account and join live on May 11, 2020 at 4:00PM EDT.

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Visual Arts

Home activity for kids with Kunstmuseum Basel

The Kunstmuseum Basel is featuring artwork from its collection online. For parents looking for some educational content for their children while schools are still closed: To accompany the exhibition “Picasso, Chagall, Jawlensky” the museum has designed a hands-on booklet to encourage children to playfully interact with its collection. After downloading and printing this activity sheet, all you need is a pen and your imagination!

Digital exhibition with Kunsthaus Zürich

Explore the Danish/Icelandic artist Olafur Eliasson’s exhibition, entitled “Symbiotic Seeing,” through the Kunsthaus Zürich’s digital channel. One of the most important figures in the contemporary art scene, Eliasson creates immersive installations that speak to our senses and dissolve the boundaries between the viewer and the work. The new works, created especially for the Kunsthaus, focus on the relationship between people, animals, plants and other species inhabiting Earth.

Fondation Beyeler

This unique museum of contemporary and modern art, one of the most popular in Switzerland, is continuing its focus on cultural education through increased online activities, including Artist Talks, digital guided tours, and many other engagement opportunities.

Online Collection from the Swiss National Museum

Immerse yourself in the world of museum objects from the Swiss National Museum and discover Switzerland’s cultural history in thousands of pictures, illustrations, and descriptions. You can also download images directly through the site.

Online Collections of Several Museums throughout Switzerland

Google Arts & Culture is hosting online versions of the collections of several museums throughout Switzerland, including The Olympic Museum in Lausanne; CERN; Hochschule Luzern — Design & Kunst; Textilmuseum St. Gallen; Musée d’ethnographie de Neuchâtel; and others.

Museum of Art and History in Geneva

This established Geneva institution currently offers digital access to many of its collections and programs.

Tinguely Museum

A tour through the Tinguely Museum is always fascinating; and now the museum is truly pushing the limits of Switzerland’s museum landscape with its interactive exhibition “Meta-Tinguely”. This online tool enables visitors to actively participate in and explore the many captivating facets of Tinguely’s art through texts, videos, images, animation, and games. So buckle up and settle in for a true journey of discovery!

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Film

Swiss films available on Netflix

o The Awakening of Motti Wolkenbruch

o My Life as a Zucchini

Swiss films available on Amazon Prime

o The Divine Order

o Zwinglis Erbe

o Heidi (old & new version)

o Mario

o Gotthard (TV show)

o H. R. Giger Revealed

Visions du Réel

Though the digital edition of this prestigious international documentary festival, held each year in the Swiss town of Nyon, has ended, you can still watch a few of the selected films online via the festival’s website!

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Dance/Theater/Opera

Zurich Opera House

Enjoy great opera and ballet at home for free through the beginning of June. Performances will be accessible from Friday through Sunday, with different performances available each weekend.

SpectYou Streaming Platform

All recordings of theater and dance performances are currently free of charge to users, as long as you create an account.

Béjart Ballet Lausanne

Switzerland’s internationally acclaimed dance company is offering streaming of some of its pieces on its website.

Grand Theatre de Genève

Geneva’s home for performing arts is opening its doors virtually to enable access to its state-of-the-art opera and ballet productions entirely free of charge, and to give exclusive looks behind the scenes of one of the largest artistic institutions in French-speaking Switzerland. The Grand Théâtre presents parts of their carefully curated selection on a weekly basis, so be sure to check out their offerings regularly.

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Music

Baron.e on Spotify and YouTube

Maybe you’ve heard this name before, since the group was originally scheduled to come to DC as part of the 2020 Francophonie Cultural Festival. Although their concert was postponed, you can still enjoy their electro-pop style from home. The young Swiss music duo, comprised of Faustine Pochon and Arnaud Rolle, just released their first full-length EP “Jeunesse Dorée” on March 13, 2020.

The Black Barons on Soundcloud and YouTube

Swiss sounds, U.S. origins: Inspired by the music of Johnny Cash, the Swiss band The Black Barons was founded during a road trip through the United States. The band’s debut album, a mixture of authentic country style and modern elements of folk, blues and pop, has already been recognized as one of the best Swiss albums of the year.

Montreaux Jazz Festival

This iconic Swiss festival — one of the most famous summer festivals in Europe — is offering intimate life sessions, music tips, interviews, and archived concerts on its Youtube channel.

Orchestre de la Suisse Romande

The Geneva-based Orchestre de la Suisse Romande (OSR) has partnered with Swiss television channel RTS to stream a series of pre-recorded concerts on its YouTube channel. You can now enjoy the amazing offerings of this internationally acclaimed orchestra, known for its historic recordings and interpretation of 20th century French and Russian repertories, from the comfort of your own home.

Contemporary Swiss Music on MX3

There’s so much more to Swiss music than yodelling! MX3 is the meeting place for Swiss contemporary music. The site features playlists and a lot of extra music content for listening.

Music for Children with Henri Dès

Since March 19, Swiss musician Henri Dès has sung a children’s song every day on his Facebook page. All previous videos are saved there as well.

Gstaad Digital Festival

Classical music from the mountains and a whole orchestra in your living room: the Gstaad Digital Festival seemingly makes the impossible possible. This renowned festival now presents concert highlights, backstage interviews and masterclasses on its webplatform.

Virtual Blues Festival Baden 2020

Fight the blues with blues music! The Baden Blues Festival 2020 is going virtual this year. This highly popular event will be streaming 30 different offering on its official website and its social media channels.

The Rhine Falls — The music of nature

Savor the sounds of Europe’s biggest waterfall and enjoy simply doing nothing. With the Rhine Falls, total relaxation is guaranteed.

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Literature

Judith Keller, Die Fragwürdigen (The Questionable Ones)

Ready for a change of pace and a new literary discovery? In her first book, The Questionable Ones (Die Fragwürdigen), young Swiss author Judith Keller showcases her abilities through stories that are works of linguistic art; they surprise and enchant in equal measure. The Questionable Ones, published in German in 2017, won an award from both the City and the Canton of Zurich, was performed as a theater production, and was also featured as an audio play for Swiss radio. You can enjoy a free sample of entertaining short stories from its upcoming English release, due later this year.

Here* you can enjoy a free reading sample of fun and entertaining short stories from The Questionable Ones.

Corona Diaries — in German only

The Aargauer Literaturhaus Lenzburg publishes online the diaries of Swiss writers, such as Dorothee Elmiger and Peter Stamm, who have been recording their thoughts on current events related to the pandemic.

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#DreamNowTravelLater

Grand Tour of Switzerland

During a time when we can’t physically travel, Switzerland Tourism takes you on a virtual road trip through Switzerland. The Grand Tour of Switzerland highlights 1000 miles of mountain passes, rivers, and lakes, as well as UNESCO heritage sites. From palm-lined lakes to sparkling glaciers, medieval villages to buzzing cities, the Grand Tour packs in an incredible number of sites and highlights Switzerland diverse geography.

Grand Train Tour of Switzerland

Take a trip through Switzerland’s most beautiful landscape! The Grand Train Tour of Switzerland travels along the best panoramic routes in one unique journey. Embark on this virtual voyage of discovery: “hop on,” sit back, and enjoy the ride!

Bundeshaus

It has never been easier to get a glimpse behind the scenes than in this virtual visit to the Swiss Parliament building in Bern.

Discover Basel

Explore this beautiful city on the Rhine in comfort with this 360-degree perspective. Simply click the link and enjoy Switzerland’s cultural capital any time.

Switzerland from a Bird’s Eye View

Breathtaking mountain landscapes, glittering lakes, and picturesque cultural sites: these 3D virtual reality clips showcase the diversity of Switzerland in a very special way. You are guaranteed to be amazed and enjoy every moment.

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Language Promotion

Duolingo

The language learning app Duolingo offers free language courses in many languages including French, German, Italian — three of Switzerland’s national languages.

Radiotelevisium Svizra Rumantscha (RTR)

Get a sense of Switzerland’s fourth, and least commonly spoken, national language by exploring RTR, the media outlet which covers Swiss news in Romansch.

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Cuisine / Culinary Diplomacy

Try some new Swiss recipes

Switch up your menu and try some Swiss food once or twice a week. Whether you’re in the mood to add Zopf bread to a weekend brunch, or make a quick muesli in the morning before you start your workday, we hope some of these recipes inspire you in the kitchen.

Swiss Recipes from Switzerland Tourism

Swiss Cuisine by Fooby.ch

The Classics by Betty Bossi (only available in German & French)

Swiss Classics from Swiss Milk (only available in German & French)

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Education

ETH Zurich

One of the leading international universities for technology and the natural sciences, the ETH Zurich, which is located in Switzerland, is currently offering many online courses for free!

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Miscellaneous

· If you want to cheer up people staying at home, share this video of happy cows on their first day in the pasture that was a hit on Facebook. To share the video, go into the Facebook creator studio, under video you can crosspost.

· Enjoy your time at home playing Swiss Games! The game cluster in Switzerland is still young, but the country is well positioned to be a key player in the gaming world of tomorrow — see for yourself!

· Share or retweet the #StayAtHome training videos of Swiss freestyler Andri Ragettli on Twitter, Instagram, & Facebook. For every like he gets he will donate 1 cent to the WHO to support the fight against Covid-19.

· Meet the people whose ideas are shaping the future! Nextcasts is a podcast presented by our colleagues at swissnex San Francisco.

Last updated April 20, 2020

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