Deutschland (II) - classical music extravaganza

Leipzig Travel Blog

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the Thomaskirche
Early on Thursday morning I left Berlin, really thinking there was no way I was going to make the train I planned to catch because I never leave enough time for these things.  But somehow I did make it, and after a speedy one hour journey, found myself out & about sightseeing in Leipzig by about 10:30am. 

It was my day to indulge in all things classical music, and it was very enjoyable.  I started at the Bach Museum, which had lots of pictures & music & info in German (and with an English audio guide).  It's opposite the Thomaskirche where Bach (JS, that is) spent a lot of his life as choirmaster.  I got to sit and listen to Bach compositions for a while, which is really something I don't do often enough.
Mendelssohn's study

I went into the Thomaskirche as well, which is where Bach's remains are now buried, and they have a Bach stained glass window and a Bach organ (built for his 250th birthday, or something, to perfect Bach-playing specifications). 

Then it was over to Mendelssohn Haus, where Mendelssohn lived & had musical gatherings for many years.  Also lots of pictures & info in German, but also an audio guide (on iPod Nano!).  They also had some original furniture & the apartment is decorated based on real Mendelssohn evidence. 

Next it was up to Schumann Haus, where Robert & Clara lived for some time.  No audio guide this time, just a written English tour.  All these places were very small & inconspicuous places (I had problems finding the entrance to the Shumann museum) but had really good displays & a wealth of information. 

Then, because I'd bought a combi-ticket that included all these places, I went to the Musikinstrumenten-Museum.  As the title suggests, they had a lot of musical instruments.  They had a lot of stringed instruments & piano-esque instruments - all quite fascinating.  But my favourite bit was the room upstairs, which was a hands-on museum.  I got to play a see-through piano, a harpsichord and a clavichord!!!  I've only ever played the harpsichord setting on a cheap keyboard, so it really was quite exciting.  They had a bunch of other instruments as well, and a mini organ with only about 5 keys - no case so all the pipes & stops were on display.  It was really cool to look at & fiddle with.

As much as I love Bach & all the others, playing the instruments was probably the highlight of my day!

In the evening I sat around chatting with a bunch of gusy at the hostel - one from Chile, one from Japan, one from New Zealand, and one from Tasmania.  Yes it's true, the world is smaller than it looks. 
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the Thomaskirche
the Thomaskirche
Mendelssohns study
Mendelssohn's study
photo by: aloneinthecrowd