MSM students embrace the Maastricht spirit of Carnival

One of the highlight events of the year in Maastricht is Carnival, a three-day joyous public street celebration involving a lot of music, dancing and amusement. People dress up with beautiful costumes and go to see the huge Sunday carnival parade.

The festival takes place just before Lent and everyone is welcome to take part in it. One of the specificities of the Maastricht carnival is the reversal of roles and norms combined with humorous social criticism.

Every year MSM students discover the Maastricht carnival with great surprise and delight during a surprise party put together by MSM staff. This year again, fancy wigs and colorful hats were waiting for them in the business lounge last Friday afternoon. Drawn by the happy carnival music, the red-yellow-green snacks, balloons and decorations, the students quickly embraced the spirit of carnival.

As an educational institute, MSM also provided them with some background information about the carnival tradition in Maastricht. For this, a local inhabitant and carnival fan was invited to share her experience of carnival with the students and to explain what the festival meant to her and her family and why she together with so many fellow Limburgers were attached to it.

Her short presentation was followed by an entertaining quiz testing the students’ knowledge of the main characteristics and the history of the Maastricht carnival.

In true carnival spirit, MSM had prepared another surprise for the students. One among them had been secretly chosen by some MSM staff to be the MSM Prins Carnival and the students were invited to guess his or her name by asking questions. The suspense did not last very long and out of a big colorful box that no one had paid attention to earlier came Prins Bernas I, MSM Prins Carnival.

His appearance provoked much laughter and hand clapping in the room and everyone happily agreed to accept his authority when he read out loud his 11 rules for the next three days.

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