Buenos Aires culture and nighlife

#1
I like the members who live here to comment on this and give their opinions on what Buenos Aires offers culturally .
In my opinion I find this city more exciting and offers more options than all North American and most European cities.
 
#2
Buenos aires rivals paris, london, rome, florence, berlin, lyon, brussels, amsterdam, copenhagen, athens, new york, boston, san francisco, washington, madrid, barcelona, prague and all the other major cities in europe and america? That's more than a joke.

That Buenos Aires is the best in South America and offers a reasonable range of cultural activities is without doubt but to suggest it offers more culturally than any of the aforementioned cities is ludicrous. It's like comparing apples and oranges, European cities have centuries of culture just built into them. US cities are around the same age as Buenos Aires but have had far more money pumped into them over a longer period of time. Argentines like to point to their european heritage as a mark of their cultural superiority over the rest of south america and often north america. Most north americans are of european stock as well and in the major west and east coast cities are as culturally aware as anyone.

This is not slagging off BA in any way. The city has a lot to offer and at far more reasonable prices than europe and the US but it's simply untrue to suggest that the BA cultural calendar is as full or fulfilling as the major US or european cities.

(i don't live in argentina anymore btw, i moved 2 months ago after almost 3 years in BA so maybe it's all changed in the last couple of months)

EDIT: I wrote 'like' not 'live' in my last sentence which was a typo, nothing insidious and not a freudian slip either...
 
#3
"Argentines like to point to their european heritage as a mark of their
cultural superiority over the rest of south america and often north
america."
Do they though? I don't mean to be rude but I keep seeing this mentioned but haven't seen any proof of it. Are these just people on the street bringing this up, friends? Or in the tourism info? As for the nightlife, I'm loving it so far - the bars and clubs are friendly although sometimes a little too busy but there are also some nice smaller pubs if you feel like something more relaxed. I'm still not quite used to late nights over here I'm going out when I'd normally be coming home in London.
 
#4
the ones that look european like to drop it into conversation 'casually'. most argentines, however, don't look european at all particularly out of BA and even out of recoleta and palermo. but that's a different topic.
 
#5
Buenos Aires has a good deal to offer in terms of entertainment and night life, especially in the Latin American context however it is a silly exaggeration to suggest that it can compare culturally to New York, other important cities of the US or the major capitals of Europe. Pericles argues that he finds more here. More what? Museums? The Museum of Fine Arts and the Malba Museum are the leading art museums in BA. The former has a good collection of masters however a small one that could be contained in a few rooms of the Metropolitan Museum of Art, the National Gallery in Washington, the Art Institute of Chicago or many other museums in the US or Europe. The Malba is an attractive museum, generously built with the contribution of a single benefactor. There is a very good, though rather small, permanent collection and periodic changing exhibitions. There are no other museums in BA that can in any way claim to have even remotely international status. Traveling art exhibitions of major import, the kind of blockbuster shows that appear regularly at major international art museums, are unknown in BA. BA is simply not on the map when it comes to the contemporary art scene. Artists (including architects) who succeed go abroad, often to Europe, where there is a larger market for their work and, of course, more money.

BA is stronger in the performing arts. Its most distinguished musical institution is the Teatro Colon however the Colon has declined very seriously in the last two or more decades. As a municipally owned and run theatre it is overwhelmed by politics and inefficiency. Labor strife is rampant. A couple of seasons ago performances were routinely cancelled or rescheduled with complete disregard for the public. The Colon’s director and administrative staff are changed frequently at the whim of the government in power. All of this has had negative effects on the artistic quality. The jewel in the crown of the Teatro Colon is the opera company which now performs no more than 11 or 12 operas a year perhaps an average of four times each, a fraction of what is performed by the Metropolitan Opera or other major opera houses. Because of the high fees that international artists command, the Colon has difficulty attracting the famous singers who used to routinely come here. After years of neglect the theatre has been closed for a major renovation. Unfortunately there is no other major opera house or concert hall in the city, as in New York or many cities of Europe. BA desperately needs an orchestra hall for the Philharmonic, the National Symphony (apparently currently defunct due to political problems) and visiting orchestras. The Colon’s ballet and the BA Philharmonic are at best mediocre – that they could be compared to the best European and American institutions (there are many) is laughable. There are many outstanding Argentine born performers: Marta Argerich, Daniel Barenboim, Bruno Gelber, Julio Boca, Pamela Hererra, a number of important opera singers etc. They all live and work abroad (the US or Europe) though they make appearances in Argentina. Marta Argerich has been especially generous to the Argentine public. BA has a rich musical life compared to any other city in Latin America but it can compare to major European or American cities in the areas of the fine arts or performing arts. I appreciate what is here and I take advantage of it but I have no illusions about being in New York or London in terms of variety and quality.

I’m planning a trip to Europe in a few months to Europe with a focus on art, architecture and music. Pericles can tell me all he wants that BA has more than Milan, Rome, Venice, London and Paris but I am afraid he is not going to convince me. None of this means that BA does not have its charms – just not the richness of history, art and music that can be found in Europe. Apparently my previous post (the one that sparked this thread) was deleted by someone. I hope this one is saved.
 
#6
"Kayfabe" said:
Do they though? I don't mean to be rude but I keep seeing this mentioned but haven't seen any proof of it. Are these just people on the street bringing this up, friends? Or in the tourism info?
Yes they do. Buenos Aires used to be known as the "Paris of South America," which sobriquet it can still arguably lay claim to. Wax enthusiastic about the (European) charms of BsAs and you'll see the eyes of most Portenos light up (even more so when you add some disparaging comments about the philistinism of the United States). And Argentinians in general need the constant reassurance about their European blood, roots, and culture as they're psychologically insecure of who and what they are, and where their country is going; they definitely don't want to be lumped with other South Americans (such as Peruvians and Bolivians), so that leaves them in limbo -- neither here nor there. It's a bit like Israel in the Middle East -- it feels it's part of European civilisation and has no truck with the people and culture of the Middle East. In contrast to Argentinians, Americans (i.e., people of the United States) have forged an identity of their own, which they're entirely comfortable with.
 
#7
Buenos Aires may not offer the grandest opera houses or the best philarmonic orchestras nor the best musuems but for nightlife I stand by my opinions that there is a tremendous array of options here that are hard to equal in the cities mentioned by Sergio .
At 4 am on a Saturday morning there is literally 100s of places to go to while most of those cities are closing their doors .
 
#8
"bigbadwolf" said:
Do they though? I don't mean to be rude but I keep seeing this mentioned but haven't seen any proof of it. Are these just people on the street bringing this up, friends? Or in the tourism info?
Yes they do. Buenos Aires used to be known as the "Paris of South America," which sobriquet it can still arguably lay claim to. Wax enthusiastic about the (European) charms of BsAs and you'll see the eyes of most Portenos light up (even more so when you add some disparaging comments about the philistinism of the United States). And Argentinians in general need the constant reassurance about their European blood, roots, and culture as they're psychologically insecure of who and what they are, and where their country is going; they definitely don't want to be lumped with other South Americans (such as Peruvians and Bolivians), so that leaves them in limbo -- neither here nor there. It's a bit like Israel in the Middle East -- it feels it's part of European civilisation and has no truck with the people and culture of the Middle East. In contrast to Argentinians, Americans (i.e., people of the United States) have forged an identity of their own, which they're entirely comfortable with.
This quote from Big Bad wolf above
I find these comments to be harsh on Argentinian people and to compare our society to United States has nothing to do with this topic. If you like to ask my opinions I do not find American people anymore confident than others in most cases the opposite is true these days.
 
#9
Buenos Aires offers Tango and Tango is sexy. If you speak to young Argentine people, many say Tango is for old people like their grandparents. I never saw my grandmother dancing like that.
 
#10
Max, you may not have been to a milonga - a kind of dance hall where mostly tango is danced. Most of the people who go are older. The style of tango dancing is quite sedate compared to the show tango - it's elegant with a few flourishes but nothing like what you see in shows. I know people in their 80's who dance tango.