Patriotism to take a back seat on national day

The official ceremony will take place in Biel.

The Swiss national exhibition will host the biggest national day party on August 1, putting the country's multiculturalism in the spotlight.

This content was published on July 24, 2002 - 08:47

Special events get underway at 1pm when musical acts and theatre troupes take the stage at the four Expo.02 sites - Biel, Neuchâtel, Yverdon-les-Bains and Murten.

There will be Bossanova bands, flamenco music, Indian vocalists and unconventional interpretations of Swiss folk music.

Andes and Alps

Music from mountain regions will set the tone in Yverdon with live performances by groups from the Andes, Himalayas and, of course, the Alps.

Official ceremonies are scheduled for 8pm, followed by concerts and, in Biel, a special play written for the occasion. Entitled, "August 02", the play questions what it means to be Swiss and is intended to be Expo's provocative response to the usual flag-waving ceremonies and patriotic speeches on August 1.

A 30-minute fireworks display at each of the sites will bring proceedings to a spectacular end.

The festivities wind up at 4am, with the normal Expo exhibits keeping their doors open until 10pm. Normal tickets for Expo.02 are valid on August 1.


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