Around 8.30 pm on the evening of 8 September, a procession with three musketeers on electric scooters, accompanied by the brass band Wilhelmina van Wolder, the mayor, the president of Maastricht University and other interested parties will make their way from the Minderbroedersberg, via the Lenculenstraat and Kapoenstraat, to the Oud-Gouvernement (the building that previously housed the provincial authorities). There, led by the Wilhelmina wind and percussion sections, Beppie Kraft – a famous local artist - will sing Laot de zon in dien hart from the balcony.
This is all part of the official opening ceremony, although by the point PAS+ will already be in full swing in the gardens, courtyards and rooms of the UM buildings. The next day, café Tribunal, the conservatory, Looiersgracht 5 (formerly the Edmond Hustinx house), the Natural History Museum and others will join the action as well.
Jacques Reiners, head of Studium Generale, lays six typed pages on the table. This is the third time Studium Generale has organised the event – this time not just one evening, but three. There will be some 60 speakers, most of them UM employees – “everyone we asked responded with enthusiasm” – who will talk about their own research. The 30 minute lectures will cover a wide variety of topics: child abuse, Alzheimer’s, work stress, testosterone and financial decisions, smart labs, migration, black soldiers as liberators and more.
“We’re giving the community an insight into the research we do and, at the same time, the chance to poke around all the old convents, chapels, court and government buildings that UM is repurposing”, explains Reiners. There will be tours dedicated to the artworks in the buildings, and others focusing on their history. “Did you know that Edmond Hustinx once started a soap factory at the Looiersgracht 5? And that the workers lived there too and ate trout from the Jeker river?”
The hall of the Minderbroedersberg will feature a trapeze, the courtyards of the Minderbroedersberg and the Student Services Centre large podiums for bands like Oghene Kologbo, Violons Barbares, Electrophonics, Negritos and Orchestre International du Vetex. The State Hall of the Law faculty will morph into a concert hall, while the streets will be the stage for street musicians and performers, as well as a typewriter that uses sand to write stories in dialect. In addition, there will be circus acts, theatre, dance, visual arts and films from the UM archives – around 175 different acts in total, says Reiners.
Already feeling overwhelmed? Not to worry: via the website www.pasmaastricht.nl and programme booklet you’ll soon be able to chart your own course through the Parcours.