Following directly on from Remembrance Day, 5 May is a national day of celebration known as Liberation Day, celebrating the end of Nazi Germany’s occupation during World War II. Liberation Day is usually celebrated with festivals and events throughout Amsterdam, Haarlem and the Netherlands. This year due to the coronavirus all major events have been cancelled until 1 September. Instead, you can mark the day via online events and virtual tours.
The Remembrance Day commemoration starts with solemn ceremonies on 4 May as a symbol of respect for all the Dutch who died in conflicts around the world and especially in World War II.
Liberation Day takes place the day after Remembrance Day, celebrating the freedom of the Netherlands from Nazi occupation after World War II. It is usually celebrated with music festivals. However, this year is an exception. The usual open-air festivals have been called off due to the coronavirus crisis.
5 May Public Holiday in 2020
Liberation Day is a day of national observance, but every five years it’s celebrated as a public holiday, with schools and businesses closed throughout the country. In 2020, 5 May is a national holiday day.
Online 5 May concert and other online events
To replace the annual 5 May concert, the NOS, in collaboration with the National Committee, is broadcasting from the foyer of Theater Carré in Amsterdam. Simone Kleinsma, Roel van Velzen, mezzo-soprano Maria Fiselier and violinist Noa Wildschut will be on stage, accompanied in a special way by the Metropole Orchestra. In addition, presenter Simone Weimans gives an overview of the highlights of the 5 May concerts from the past.
The NOS broadcasts the liberation special at 20:35 on NPO 1.
Check out the website 4 en 5 mei Amsterdam for full details of this extensive online programme.