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Leipzig – A World-Class City of Music
Page 1: Leipzig – A World-Class City of Music€¦ · Johann Sebastian Bach After stops in Arnstadt, Weimar and Köthen, in ... 13 –15/12/2013 Johann Sebastian Bach – Christmas Oratorio

Leipzig – A World-ClassCity of Music

Page 2: Leipzig – A World-Class City of Music€¦ · Johann Sebastian Bach After stops in Arnstadt, Weimar and Köthen, in ... 13 –15/12/2013 Johann Sebastian Bach – Christmas Oratorio

Leipzig – where music calls the tune

Strauss Cycle 2014 at the Leipzig GewandhausIn June 2014, the music world will celebrate the 150th anniversary of the birth of Richard Strauss, the master and perfecter of tone poetry, of pure programme music. To the con-servatives of his time, he was a fashionable evil, to the progressives, the fruition of a great idea. Even in Leipzig, people were divided, but open. So Strauss was often invited here both as a conductor and a composer. His tone poems and operas are, of course, part of the repertoire. To celebrate his birthday the Grand Concerts at the Gewandhaus from 3 April to 4 June 2014, will showcase most of his tone poems as well as contemporary works. The highlights of the series will be the concert by the Vienna Philharmonic with Christoph Eschenbach and Lang Lang as soloists, as well as the birthday concert on 11 June 2014 with the Gewandhaus Orchestra. You can experience Strauss’ operas “Elektra”, “Der Rosenkavalier” (The Knight of the Rose) and “Die Frau ohne Schatten” (The Woman without a Shadow) at the Leipzig Opera House.

Leipzig Bachfest at Market Square

In Leipzig you can feel the fascinating power of music everywhere – in the streets and squares, in churches, concert halls and in the many authentic places where famous composers and musicians lived and worked. A long-standing tradition: over 500 composers have lived here over the centuries including the greatest names in music history – St. Thomas choirmaster Johann Sebastian Bach, Georg Philipp Tele- mann, Felix Mendelssohn Bartholdy and the married couple Clara and Robert Schumann, as well as Richard Wagner, Edvard Grieg, Albert Lortzing, Gustav Mahler and Hanns Eisler.

Music comes to life hereThe rich musical heritage also includes the Gewandhaus Orchestra – currently directed by star conductor Riccardo Chailly – and the world-renowned St. Thomas Boys Choir, which can look back over 800 years of history. And don’t forget the Opera, which has always sought to preserve Wagner’s heritage and is one of the oldest civic venues for musical theatre in Europe. In the “Capital City of Music”, top-class ensembles and soloists perform to an audience fasci-nated by music, whether at concerts, ballets, the Summer Organ Festival or the world-renowned Bachfest. Leipzig’s passion brings music to life! www.leipzig.travel/music

Members of Leipzig Gewandhaus Orchestra and St. Thomas Boys Choir in St. Thomas Church

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Gewandhaus Orchestra

Riccardo Chailly, musical director of the Gewandhaus Orchestra

The Strauss Cycle concerts at the Leipzig Gewandhaus in 2014

03 – 04/04 Grand Concert: “Ein Heldenleben” (A Hero’s Life), Jonathan Nott

08 – 09/05 Grand Concert: “Also sprach Zarathustra”, prelude for large orchestra and organ, Sir Andrew Davis

24/05 Concert by the Vienna Philharmonic with Christoph Eschenbach and Lang Lang, to include “Metamorphosen”, “Don Juan” and suite from “Der Rosenkavalier” (The Knight of the Rose)

05 – 06/06 Grand Concert: “Don Quixote”, “Tod und Verklärung” (Death and Trans-figuration), “Till Eulenspiegels lustige Streiche” (Till Eulenspiegel’s Merry Pranks), Riccardo Chailly

11/06 Grand Concert: “Don Quixote”, “Till Eulenspiegels lustige Streiche” (Till Eulenspiegel’s Merry Pranks), Riccardo Chailly

03 – 04/07 Grand Concert: “Eine Alpensinfonie” (An Alpine Symphony), Andris Nelsons

Gewandhaus OrchestraThe Gewandhaus Orchestra is one of the world’s most famous orchestras. Its many premieres at the Gewandhaus concert hall made musical history, including some of the most famous works of the greatest European composers such as Beethoven, Brahms and Bruckner. The orchestra performs its “Grand Concerts” at the Ge-wandhaus, it is Leipzig’s opera orchestra

and it accompanies the Bach cantata performances at St. Thomas Church. This means that the Gewandhaus Orchestra plays some 200 concerts per season at its three Leipzig venues and on its various international tours. Its current and 19th musical director is the Italian conductor Riccardo Chailly.

Gewandhaus – “Res severa verum gaudium”The concert hall has gained con siderable international renown as the venue of the famous Gewandhaus Orchestra. About half a million music lovers from all over the world come to the Gewandhaus every year. Merchants from Leipzig founded the orchestra in 1743. It is Europe’s oldest civilian concert orchestra. Its name comes from its original venue – the hall of the trading house of the cloth-makers’ guild, the “Gewandhaus”. Its legendary fame came through its musical directors, including Johann Adam Hiller, Felix Mendelssohn Bartholdy, Arthur Nikisch, Kurt Masur, Herbert Blomstedt and Riccardo Chailly.

Leipzig Gewandhaus

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Richard Wagner – “Die Feen”, Leipzig Opera

Over 300 years of da capo!Leipzig’s opera tradition dates back to 1693. The Opera House is the third oldest civilian music theatre stage in Europe. Its history is closely linked to the life and work of famous composers including Leipzig-born Richard Wagner, Georg Philipp Telemann, Heinrich Marschner, Albert Lortzing and Gustav Mahler.

The Opera and Leipzig Ballet are located in Leipzig Opera House on Augus- tusplatz, which opened in 1960. An international ensemble of soloists, the award-winning Opera Choir and the Gewandhaus Orchestra, which traditio-nally accompanies the operas and ballets, guarantee musical performances of the highest quality. Under Artistic Director and General Music Director Prof. Ulf Schirmer, the works of Richard Wagner and Richard Strauss in particular are being brought back into the centre of the repertoire. Following the interna-tionally acclaimed productions of Wagner’s early works in the anniversary year of 2013, 2014 will see Leipzig celebrate the 150th anniversary of the birth of Richard Strauss with a premiere and two revival performances.

Mario Schröder, ballet director and head choreographer of a young company with dancers from 23 different countries, focuses on his dancers’ strongpersonalities and looks to create a direct dialogue with the audience. TheMusical Comedy Theatre is the place to go for musicals, operettas and light opera in the Lindenau area of Leipzig.

Leipzig Opera

Leipzig’s Opera House in Augustusplatz

06 & 08/09/2013 Grand Concert: opening of the 233rd Gewandhaus season, Gewandhaus, www.gewandhaus.de

07/09/2013 Grand Concert: “Klassik airleben”, open-air stage at Augustusplatz, www.gewandhaus.de

07 – 15/09/2013 Schumann Festival Week 2013, Schumann House, Leipzig Schönefeld Memorial Church www.schumann-verein.de

12 – 22/ 09/ 2013 Mendelssohn Festival 2013 “Mendelssohn and Goethe”, Gewandhaus, Mendelssohn House, www.gewandhaus.de

12 –13/09/2013 Grand Concert: opening of the Mendelssohn Festival 2013, Gewandhaus, www.gewandhaus.de

14/09/2013 Leipzig Opera Ball, Leipzig Opera, www.opernball-leipzig.de

Event Highlights – Music (selection)

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Johann Sebastian BachAfter stops in Arnstadt, Weimar and Köthen, in 1723 the great composer and organist of the Baroque Era assumed the position as Choirmaster of St. Thomas Church in Leipzig, a post which he held until his death in 1750. In add ition to organ pieces, motets and cantatas, during this time he also composed such outstanding works as the Christmas Oratorio, the St. John Passion and the St. Matthew Passion. To this day these compositions have not lost any of their charisma and are quite naturally included in the yearly repertoire of many Leipzig choirs. Bach’s legacy lives on here like in no other city!

Leipzig Bach Museum The permanent exhibition in the Leipzig Bach Museum presents Bach’s life and work in many different ways: sound expe riments, multimedia stations and interactive elements as well as precious originals are to be found. A highlight of the exhibition is the Treasure Chamber, in which the original Bach manu-scripts and other rarities are on display. At concerts and during guided tours the baroque Summer Hall with its unique sound chamber is also accessible for visitors. The annual highlight in Bach-related events, however, is the interna-tional Leipzig Bachfest in June hosting some 100 events in historical venues such as St. Thomas and the Old City Hall. Even jazz interpret ations of Bach’s works can be heard.

Bach Museum

J. S. Bach – his heirs, his followers

In the Bach Museum

27/09 –06/10/2013 37th Leipziger Jazztage, various venues, www.jazzclub-leipzig.de

28/09/2013 Grand Concert: Award ceremony for the Leipzig International Mendelssohn Prize, Gewandhaus, www.gewandhaus.de

29/09/2013 Opera premiere: Richard Wagner – “Das Liebesverbot” (The Ban on Love), Leipzig Opera, www.oper-leipzig.de

10 – 19/10/2013 Brahms Cycle, Gewandhaus, www.gewandhaus.de

18/10/2013 Anniversary Concert: Battle of the Nations and Richard Wagner, Leipzig Philharmonic, St. Peter’s Church, www.peterskirche-leipzig.de

19/10/2013 Benjamin Britten – “War Requiem” (op. 66), Anniversary Concert: Battle of the Nations, St. Thomas Church, www.thomaskirche.org

26/10/2013 Musical world premiere: “Das Ding mit dem Ring” (The Thing with the Ring), Musical Comedy Theatre, www.oper-leipzig.de

16/11/2013 Ballet premiere: “Pax Questuosa”, Leipzig Opera, www.oper-leipzig.de

23/11/ 2013 Grand Concert: Audio Invasion, Gewandhaus, www.gewandhaus.de

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St. Thomas Boys Choir (Thomanerchor)Dating back over 800 years, the St. Thomas Boys Choir is Leipzig’s oldest cultural asset. The boys choir has been in existence since 1212, when the Margrave of Meissen founded the St. Thomas Augustinian Canons (Augustiner-Chorherrenstift zu St. Thomas). Much has changed over the centuries, but even today the choirboys of St. Thomas still live in the boarding school and attend St. Thomas School. With the choir-master of St. Thomas, Prof. Georg

Christoph Biller, the young choristers are dedicated to the upkeep of sacred music and, of course, of Bach’s legacy. The choristers are not only to be heard here in Leipzig; they also carry the sound of the city all over the world on their regular concert tours.

St. Thomas ChurchThe St. Thomas Boys Choir can be heard three times a week in Bach’s former workplace, mainly performing motets and Bach cantatas. And where else, indeed, could one experience the great composer so intimately? His tomb lies in the sanctuary of the 800-year-old Late-Gothic church. In front of the church, in the St. Thomas Churchyard (Thomaskirchhof), stands the New Bach Monument, erected in his honour by Leipzig sculptor Carl Seffner in 1908, and a popular snapshot for music lovers from all over the world.

St. Thomas Church

St. Thomas Boys Choir

24/11/2013 Guiseppe Verdi – “Messa da Requiem”, St. Thomas Church, www.thomaskirche.org

07/12/2013 Opera premiere: Richard Wagner – “Die Walküre” (The Valkyrie), Leipzig Opera, www.oper-leipzig.de

13 –15/12/2013 Johann Sebastian Bach – Christmas Oratorio (BWV 248), St. Thomas Church, www.thomaskirche.org

29 – 31/12/2013 Grand Concerts to mark the Turn of the Year, Gewandhaus, www.gewandhaus.de

31/12/2013 Leipzig Opera: New Year’s Eve Gala, Leipzig Opera, www.oper-leipzig.de

01/01/2014 New Year’s Concert: “Heimlich, still und leise kommt die Liebe ...” (Love comes softly ...), Salonorchester Cappuccino, Gewandhaus, www.gewandhaus.de

01/01/2014 Johann Sebastian Bach – Christmas Oratorio (BWV 248), Bach Consort Leipzig, St. Thomas Church, www.thomaskirche.org

31/01/2014 Ballet premiere: “Romeo and Juliet”, Musical Comedy Theatre, www.oper-leipzig.de

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Sound & Body – the “Choir Spirit”of LeipzigThough probably the most famous, St. Thomas Boys Choir is not the only vocal ensemble worthy of note in Leipzig. The city is home to more than 30 choirs of all kinds and genres including the Bach Choir, the Gewandhaus and Opera House Choir, the Choir of the Monument to the Battle of the Nations, the University Choir, the Leipzig Vocal Ensemble, the vocal quintet Amarcord, the youth choir “Crazy Generation Leipzig” and the Gospel choir “Open up wide”.

Orchestras of all kinds and agesPut four Leipzig musicians in a room and they will found a string quartet the next day – or so a saying goes. Give them a week, and they will set up an orchestra. One thing, however, is certain: the city’s orchestras are legendary. Take the MDR Symphony Orchestra, for example, one of the oldest radioorchestras in the world. Together with the radio choir and the unique children’s choir, the orchestra can be frequent ly heard performing at the Gewandhaus and at the MDR studios in Augustusplatz. Its repertoire ranges from famous classical works to experimental music. Also cele brated among music lovers are the Mendelssohn Chamber Orchestra, the Academic Orchestra Leipzig, the Leipzig University Orchestra and Salonorchester Cappuccino. To sum up –Leipzig is fi rst class.

MDR Radio Choir

Orchestras and Choirs

Youth Symphony Orchestra Leipzig

08/02/2014 Opera premiere: Geatano Donizetti – “Don Pasquale”, Leipzig Opera, www.oper-leipzig.de

07/03–20/07/2014 Exhibition: “In Honour of Carl Philipp Emanuel Bach’s 300th Birthday”, Leipzig Bach Museum, www.bach-leipzig.de

08/03/2014 Ballet premiere: “Mozart Requiem”, Leipzig Opera, www.oper-leipzig.de

05/04/2014 Opera premiere: Igor Strawinsky – “The Rake’s Progress”, Leipzig Opera, www.oper-leipzig.de

09 –18/05/2014 “a cappella” – International Festival of Vocal Music, various venues, www.a-cappella-festival.de

17/05/2014 Ballet premiere: Ohad Naharin – “Deca Dance”, Leipzig Opera,www.oper-leipzig.de

13 – 22/06/2014 Leipzig Bachfest “The True Art”, various venues, www.bachfestleipzig.de

14/06/2014 Opera premiere: Richard Strauss – “Die Frau ohne Schatten” (The Woman without a Shadow), Oper Leipzig, www.oper-leipzig.de

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Regular Music EventsFridays 6 pm Motets with St. Thomas Boys Choir in St. Thomas Church*,

www.thomaskirche.orgSaturdays 3 pm Motet and Cantata by J. S. Bach with St. Thomas Boys Choir and the Gewandhaus Orchestra in St. Thomas Church*, www.thomaskirche.orgSundays 11 am Sunday Concert in the music salon of Mendelssohn House,


July – August 2014Mondays 7 pm Monday Concert at the Bach Memorial in front of St. Thomas

Church, www.bachkonzerte.eu

* except during school holidays and concert tours

Mendelssohn HouseFelix Mendelssohn Bartholdy was a major infl uence on European musical history – and he in turn was infl uenced by his experience of Leipzig. Under his musical direction, the Gewandhaus Orchestra became a fi rst-class orchestra. Moreover, Mendelssohn is renowned for his rediscovery of Bach. The perfor-

mance of the St. Matthew Passion under his musical direction in 1829 initiated the “Bach Renaissance”. He is also credited for the foundation of the “Conser-vatory of Music” in 1843, Germany’s oldest music academy. Famous contem-poraries such as Schumann and Wagner were frequent visitors to his home on Goldschmidtstraße. Today, it is home to the world’s only Mendelssohn museum. The exhibition is currently being refurbished and extended. In 2014, the house will be brought back to life with more interactive features. Visitors will be able to step up to the conductor’s podium themselves, and browse the digital music library. The museum will remain open throughout the renovation.

Richard Wagner, Leipzig born and bredRichard Wagner was born here on 22 May 1813. As a youth he attended St. Nicholas School, and later St. Thomas School. At the age of 16, in his home town, he decided to devote his life to music. In 1831 he enrolled as a music student at the University of Leipzig, and also took instruction in composition with the St. Thomas choirmaster, Christian Theodor Weinlig.

His fi rst works were performed in the Gewandhaus, such as his Symphony in C Major in 1833. To celebrate the 200th anniversary of his birth in May 2013, Leipzig fi nally unveiled its Wagner Memorial, created by sculptor Stephan Balkenhol. The Old St. Nicholas School has also opened a permanent exhibition entitled “The Young Richard Wagner, 1813 to 1834”, which highlights Wagner’s early life and musical education.

Mendelssohn House

Richard Wagner

Experience authentic historic places

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Leipzig. A celebration forthe senses! Not only musicians felt attracted to Leipzig, but also poets, philosophers and visual artists. To this day the city offers an extraordinary cultural variety in a league of its own: colourful, creative and replete with innovative ideas – to experience through open-air concerts, in the galleries of the “Spinnerei” (a former cotton mill) or the trendy pubs which have no closing time. But shopping fans also get their full money’s worth. An extensive stroll through the lovingly restored passages, small speciality shops and department stores is worthwhile here. And quite incidentally, you can marvel at the city’s architectu-ral treasures – simply open your eyes!

Barthels Hof

Schumann HouseRobert Schumann and Clara Wieck may be Leipzig’s most famous lovers from the 19th century. After their wedding on 12 Septem ber 1840 in the village church at Schönefeld near Leipzig, the celebrated female pianist and the still unknown composer moved to Inselstraße. Among other things, the “Spring Symphony” and the fi rst movement of the piano concert in A minor were created dur-ing this period. Today the Schumann

House presents an exhibition on the life and work of the musician couple. In addition, concerts and readings take place regularly.

Edvard Grieg Memorial PlaceThroughout his life, Edvard Grieg retained close ties to Leipzig’s music academy, the “Konservatorium”, fi rst enrolling there in 1858. His encounters with Brahms and Tchaikovsky in Leipzig inspired him for decades, and it was here that Grieg wrote his fi rst compositions. His publisher, C. F. Peters, lived in Talstraße 10, where Grieg stayed regularly and where today an exhibition commemorates the composer’s work.

GRASSI Museum of Musical InstrumentsIt holds one of the biggest collections of its kind – the Museum of Musical Instruments of the University of Leipzig. Its exhibitions offer insights into the magic of musical instruments and instrument making since the 16th century. Its 5,000 or so precious exhibits include the oldest known clavichord (1543) and the world’s oldest surviving original pianoforte (1726). In the museum’s sound lab you can try out some of the instruments yourself.

GRASSI Museum of Musical Instruments

In the Schumann House

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Opened at last – the Leipzig Music TrailLeipzig has a concentration of authentic famous composers’ homes and workplaces that is unique in the world – a sparkling musical past that laid the foundations for a vibrant musical present. The aim of Leipzig’s Music Trail ini-tiative is to make this treasure visible and tangible. The “Leipzig Music Trail“ is a signposted route connecting the most important original sites of relevance to musical history in the city centre. Curved stainless-steel shapes set in the ground mark the “ribbon” that winds its way through the city centre and high-lights the musical tradition within the cityscape. To make the resonant name of Leipzig even more familiar to international ears as a city of music, the Music Trail initiative is also applying for the much-coveted title of UNESCO World Heritage Site. The fi rst hurdle has already been cleared: since June 2012 the “Leipzig Music Trail” has been one of two recommendations from

Leipzig Music Trail

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1 New Gewandhaus concert hall2 Mendelssohn House3 Grieg Memorial Place4 Former Peters Music Library5 GRASSI Museum of Musical Instruments 6 Old St. John’s Cemetery 7 Schumann House8 Graphic arts quarter – music publishers9 Wagner Memorial10 Leipzig Opera House 11 St. Nicholas School 12 St. Nicholas Church13 Old City Hall14 Museum of Fine Arts

On the Leipzig Music Trail Grieg Memorial Place

Saxony for the German candidate list. Inclusion in this list of proposals is the prerequisite for nomination as a UNESCO World Cultural Heritage Site.

15 Zum Arabischen Coffe Baum (Germany’s oldest coffee house)

16 Former Hôtel de Saxe 17 St. Thomas Church18 Bach Archive, Bach Museum19 Clara Wieck’s birthplace20 Location of the old Music Academy

(Konservatorium)21 Location of first Gewandhaus concert hall22 Paulinum – Auditorium and

University Church St. Pauli23 MDR Cube – Radio Orchestra


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Bird’s eye view of Leipzig

Travel offers

For individual travellers – “In the Footsteps of Bach”Benefi ts: 2 nights with breakfast in one of our partner hotels Admission to the Bach Museum Bach menu (4-course menu, drinks extra)

at “Barthels Hof” restaurant Tourist map

Offer valid: year round, subject to availability,museum closed on Mondays

For groups (from 20 persons) – “Leipzig, City of Music”Benefi ts: 2 nights with breakfast in a fi rst-class hotel in Leipzig Tour guide for a special guided walk

“Music City of World Fame – a Walk on the Leipzig Music Trail” (2 hours)

Visit to the Mendelssohn House including a guided tour

Visit to the Bach Museum including a guided tour and a small concert in the Summer Hall (30 min. on three keyboard instruments)

Sale of tickets for Leipzig Gewandhaus or Leipzig Opera Tourist map

Offer valid: year round, subject to availability, museums closed on Mondays, events depending on schedule

from 1 139Price p. p. in DR

from 1185Price p. p. in SR

Price p. p. in DR

Price p. p. in SRfrom 1 149

from 1 179tickets not included

Photos: Gewandhaus: Gert Mothes (cover); Bach-Archiv: Jens Volz; Gewandhaus: Gert Mothes; GRASSI Museum für Mus ikinstrumente; Angela Liebich (Music Trail, photo left); LTM GmbH: Bader, Brzoska, Hochmuth, Mothes, Schmidt; MDR: Chris-tane Höhne (MDR Radio Choir); Oper Leipzig: Kirsten Nijhof (Die Feen) Plan: Atelier für Kommunikation & Design / Gaby Kirchhof

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Funded with fi nancial support from the government of the Free State of Saxony

Booking and information throughLeipzig Tourismus und Marketing GmbHAugustusplatz 9, 04109 LeipzigPhone: + 49 (0) 341 7104 - 275, Fax: + 49 (0) 341 7104 - [email protected] www.leipzig.de, www.leipzig.travel