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"OpernRasenLIGHT": Wonderland on the Rhine

Due to the coronavirus pandemic, the urban summer festival "#OpernRasen", planned for 2020 for the first time, cannot take place on the Opernplatz. However, due to the increasing "corona loosening" there will be an "OpernRasenLIGHT" this summer with smaller sportive and cultural formats.

Oversized furniture from the Alice in Wonderland backdrop also delights (from left) Mayor Ashok Sridharan, Ute Pilger, Birgit Schneider-Bönninger, head of the sports and culture department, and General Director Bernhard Helmich.

"The 'OpernRasenLIGHT' series of events will transform the outdoor area of the opera house into an adventure area for the whole family - with sports and games offerings as well as cultural formats," said Mayor Ashok Sridharan at the performance on Wednesday, June 17.

The City of Bonn is developing new formats together with numerous partners and would like to use them to show: Bonn needs both; sport and culture can inspire and enrich each other. The "OpernRasenLIGHT" will whet the appetite for discovery and strengthen the "we" culture in the city. "The greatest potential of sport and culture is their integration-promoting effect: sport and culture bring people together and together shape Bonn's cosmopolitan and neighbourly city culture", remarks Birgit Schneider-Bönninger, head of the Department of Sport and Culture, about her idea. 

"For the sports clubs, it is a great motivation for the future to present their work in the context of the 'OpernRasen' and to get Bonn's citizens moving again," adds Ute Pilger, chairwoman of the City Sports Association, who is one of the campaigners and who makes the sports programme possible.

App for registration and tracking

Here you can create your profile, book tickets and enter your data.

The motto is "Alice in Wonderland"

The motto of the "OpernRasensLIGHT" this year: "Alice in Wonderland". The matching production will deliver the play from October. Therefore the Theater Bonn transforms the area at the opera with its installations MärzHase, Teekanne, Grinning Cat & Co into a colourful picture. Even the famous flamingo croquet mallets will be produced by the theatre as complete play sets and can be borrowed from the beach bar's catering trade. Also the different angles, the different perspectives can be recreated by oversized chairs. And pallet furniture on the lawn will provide comfortable seating. 

For General Director Bernhard Helmich, the opera lawn is also a signal for the opening of the building to the city society. "Especially in times of crisis, theatre proves that it can also be implemented in a completely different way, on alternative stages or in the middle of the city".

The "OpernRasenLIGHT" is to be seen as an experiment in which anyone who has ideas or is interested can take part. This will also be possible via the city's social media channels. For example, suggestions for "#OpernRasen2021" will be collected in order to respond to the wishes and suggestions of all participants.

The beach bar is open from Wednesday to Sunday.

The programme

Considerations for the "OpernRasenLIGHT" could only be started at short notice. The programme remains an open process that will develop over the summer. Of course, the further situation of the coronavirus pandemic must also be kept in mind.

Due to the applicable hygiene and infection protection regulations and in order to ensure that everything runs smoothly, the city is asking all citizens who would like to take part in an "OpernRasenLIGHT" event to register  online. Once registered as a user, registration for participation in further events is quick and easy. The young Bonn start-up "As Good As Pros" has developed an app for registration and tracking and made it available as a pilot project.

In the "Wunderland am Rhein" a colourful programme awaits the visitors. Among others, the Theater Bonn and the Beethoven Orchestra will surprise with small formats. The Cultural Office will organise events (including music and dance) in cooperation with actors from the independent scene. The Bonn Summer at the Opera is intended to appeal to everyone and encourage participation. 

At the so-called "SporTeaTime", sporting activities (e.g. yoga, fitness, Pilates, etc.) are made possible in cooperation with the city sports association. These dates will be updated as soon as they are set in the app. Fencers, walking footballers, Quidditch players and many more will inspire visitors to the "Mitmach-Wiese" to exercise.

Since Friday, July 31st, there is a "SportBox", which provides sports equipment free of charge, with which one can train alone or with up to 20 people (depending on the current situation and hygiene regulations) together outdoors. The times will be assigned with the help of the corresponding app. After further "corona loosening" the SportBox could also be used as a team event for companies or organizations.

The outdoor gastronomy of the opera "Strandbar" provides a summer holiday feeling. It is open Wednesday to Sunday from 2 p.m. to 10 p.m.

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explanations and notes


  • Sascha Engst/Bundesstadt Bonn
  • Giacomo Zucca/Bundesstadt Bonn
  • City of Bonn/Thilo Beu
  • Michael Sondermann/Bundesstadt Bonn
  • fotoherkules/
  • Bundesstadt Bonn
  • Giacomo Zucca/Bundesstadt Bonn
  • Foto: aerogondo/
  • Foto: aerogondo/
  • AnnRos/
  • John Hurd
  • Markus Spiske/
  • Andre Bonn - Fotolia

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