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Posts tagged Germany
In May, the music world celebrates the 200th birthday of Richard Wagner. The composer had links with many places in Germany, but Wartburg Castle, outside Eisenach, has a fascinating tale to tell.
Lutherans know that Martin Luther translated the Bible from Greek into German while in hiding, safe in Wartburg Castle. But the magnificent old fortress also provided inspiration for Wagner’s opera Tannhäuser. Legend has it that, 800 years ago, Count Hermann I held a competition to discover the best troubadour in Germany; the contest took place in the castle’s Singers’ Hall (Sängersaal). But, there was a dark side; the worst of the six singers would be executed! From this story, Wagner created his hero, Tannhäuser.
Now a UNESCO World Heritage Site, the massive, brooding castle still stands; and visitors still admire the Sängersaal, the vast chamber with its medieval murals and carved wooden columns. From March onwards, Wartburg Castle is staging special concerts featuring Wagner’s works. In this anniversary year, this is a ‘must’ for any lover of classical music.
Visitors to Hamburg can expect even more than the well-known maritime attractions in 2013, when the city is host to the prestigious International Garden Show, and celebrates the anniversary of its renowned ballet company. These and many more events will make for a diverse program that shows the many faces of Germany’s northern most metropolis. The top highlights for 2013 include:
40 Years Hamburg Ballet – John Neumeier
Celebrating its 40th anniversary, the internationally acclaimed Hamburg Ballet and its director and chief choreographer John Neumeier will be presenting a special jubilee program. Spanning the company’s artistic vision from the very beginnings in 1973 to its current multi-facetted repertoire, the season will include four revivals, one premiere, as well as two guest companies. Highlight of the anniversary program will be Hamburg Ballet Festival, which will open with the John Neumeier interpreted performances of “Scenes from Shakespeare”.
The Hamburg Ballet – John Neumeier kicks off the anniversary year with a tour of the United States in February 2013, with performances in Chicago, Orange County and San Francisco.
Celebrated as one of the great signature choreographers of tour time, American-born Neumeier is known for masterfully combining classical ballet tradition with very contemporary forms.
Toronto, 22 January 2013 – The Belgian artist Henry van de Velde was an exponent of Classical Modernism who paved the way for the Bauhaus movement. His repertoire ranged from the architectural design of buildings and interiors to the design of jewellery and everyday objects. Numerous commissions brought van de Velde to Germany in 1900, where he left behind an impressive legacy. The German National Tourist Board (GNTB) is using the 150th anniversary of Henry van de Velde’s birth as an opportunity to highlight his work and to also promote the theme of architecture and design in Germany.
Van de Velde in and around Weimar
In 1902 Henry van de Velde came to Weimar to serve as the artistic advisor to the Grand Duke. Weimar is also where he established the School of Arts and Crafts. The ensemble of buildings which van de Velde designed for the School of Arts and Crafts and the Art School in Weimar are today part of the Bauhaus University.
The fairytales of brothers Jacob and Wilhelm Grimm are among the best-known works of German literature. Their collection of ‘Children’s and Household Tales’ made the Brothers Grimm famous around the world. 20 December 2012 marked the 200th anniversary of the first edition of these popular stories. The German National Tourist Board (GNTB), in conjunction with the Hessen Agentur regional PR agency, is using this anniversary as basis for encouraging culturally minded travellers to visit Germany. “The legacy of the Brothers Grimm presents a great opportunity to market Germany globally as a top cultural destination,” says Petra Hedorfer, Chief Executive Officer of the GNTB. Recent surveys show that Destination Germany has been one of the most popular cultural travel destinations around the world for many years and is associated with a wide range of cultural activities.
Regional exhibition in Hessen
With their collection of fairytales, Jacob and Wilhelm Grimm have made a huge contribution to global culture and rank among the leading figures of German and European cultural history. The two brothers collected a total of more than two hundred texts, mostly working in and around Kassel, and drawing on oral traditions as well as written sources. The brothers have numerous associations with Hessen, including their birthplace of Hanau, their childhood home in Steinau, Marburg where they studied and Kassel, where they served at the court of the Elector.
At the heart of the celebrations for the 2013 Grimm anniversary will be the central exhibition EXPEDITION GRIMM. It runs from 27 April to 8 September 2013 and will include a number of original items. “This major regional exhibition is a central project, but it is also part of an exciting overall programme that includes many fascinating events at numerous locations across Hessen. The many links between Hessen and ‘our’ Brothers Grimm can be experienced by visitors throughout 2013,” says Hessen’s Minister for Science and the Arts, Eva Kühne-Hörmann.
Do you love top designer fashion, or are you hunting for a bargain or a trendsetter seeking out the latest styles? In Berlin, everyone gets their money’s worth. Those looking for exclusive designer pieces will find them in the pop-up shopping gallery in the Bikini-House at the Zoo. In spring 2013, a new shopping district will be opening at the Leipziger Platz. Special highlight: the largest food court in Europe. Bargain hunters are also flocking to the many outlet centres in the city.
Frankfurt Airport’s (FRA) new Pier A-Plus – the 2624 feet-long westward expansion of Terminal 1 – opened on schedule after about four years of construction. Flight operations begin on October 10, 2012, at the new pier, allowing Germany’s biggest hub to serve up to six million additional passengers per year – thus a total of approximately 65 million passengers per year. This €700 million terminal complex will be exclusively used by Deutsche Lufthansa AG and its Star Alliance partners. In particular, Pier A-Plus provides more docking positions for serving widebody aircraft like the Airbus A380 superjumbo and the Boeing B747 family.
Pier A-Plus with 1,991,323 square feet of total useable floor space is the largest above-ground construction project at Frankfurt Airport since the opening of Terminal 2 in 1994. It provides seven docking positions for long-haul aircraft: four designed for double-decker jets like the A380 superjumbo served by three passenger bridges (one for the upper deck and two for the main deck); and three more positions with two passenger bridges for aircraft like the Boeing 747-8 and Airbus 340. Alternatively, eleven narrow body jets can be handled simultaneously at Pier A-Plus – ensuring optimum flexibility.
The new pier makes the transfer processes significantly easier and faster at Lufthansa’s biggest hub. In the future, all incoming flights from the U.S. will be handled at Area A of Terminal 1. The minimum connecting for many transfer flights on these routes will be reduced from currently 60 minutes to 45 minutes. Furthermore, the so-called docking rate will increase noticeably. That means that more aircraft can directly dock on the terminal and do not have to be parked at remote apron positions. This is much more comfortable for travellers than having to be transported to the terminal by bus, and it reduces the complexity of operations.
Pier A-Plus features five Lufthansa lounges: one First Class, two Senator and two Business lounges where guests can take a break, work or get refreshed. These facilities expand Lufthansa’s total lounge space at FRA by almost 50 percent to more than 150,695 square feet. Other details in the pier enhance the comfort of passengers: The moving walkways are longer and broader in order to shorten walking distances and to pass other guests who are not in a hurry. Furthermore, the generous waiting areas have seats with integrated power outlets and USB ports for electronic devices.
A new standard is also set in terms of retail concepts at this new expansion of Terminal 1. A total surface area of about 129,167 square feet is dedicated to some 60 shops and restaurants, which are mainly concentrated at two central marketplaces. For the first time at FRA, Duty Free and Travel Value Shops are conceptualized as walk-through shops. Travellers are automatically led through the sales area after passing the security control points.
35,000 runners from 35 nations will take part in the Jungfrau Marathon’s 20th anniversary on September 7th – the international marathon against the fabulous backdrop of the Eiger, Mönch and Jungfrau mountains, which climbs 5,980 feet over a distance of 26 miles. It is the world’s most beautiful course, a challenge for every runner and a spectacle for every spectator!Jungfrau Marathon
Beer gardens have a long tradition in Germany.
In 2012 the breweries of Munich and Upper Bavaria are celebrating the 200th anniversary of beer gardens with oompah music, traditional Bavarian dancing and a variety of events.
The Beer gardens are an important part of the Germany experience for holidaymakers. The roots of the beer garden tradition are to be found in Munich and the surrounding region. Around 200 years ago, breweries were only allowed to brew in the winter months for fire safety reasons. In order to keep the beer in drinkable condition until the summer, it had to be stored in cellars. These cellars were covered with gravel and fast-growing chestnut trees in order to keep them cool.
The gardens thus created were used by the master brewers to sell beer and food, much to the annoyance of local innkeepers, which resulted in the beer garden decree of 1812: anyone wishing to drink beer in the open air had to bring their own food with them – the beginnings of a tradition that is still alive today and which has become part and parcel of the laid-back and friendly way of life in Bavaria.
Being one of the oldest Easter Markets in Germany, the Haeferles Market in Nuremberg in Franconia is the first major event of the spring season. With over 80 stalls in the middle of the historic city centre, this market offers everything around the Easter holidays, from hand-painted eggs to wooden decorations (March 23 – April 9, 2012).
Further to the north in the charming town of medieval Wolfenbuettel, about two hours from Frankfurt, the Easter market takes place in a royal surrounding. In the courtyard of the 18th century residence castle of the Guelphs in the city centre, over 60 artists and craftsman from the region display their works on the weekend before Easter (March 31 – April 1, 2012).
Then, on Easter Saturday a huge rabbit emerges from an enormous nest and distributes candy to the children. The festivities are closely followed by a duck race whereby the ducks are thrown into the river and race to the other side. One of the largest Easter Egg Fairs in Germany takes place the beautiful landscape park Luisenpark in Mannheim from March 31 to April 4, 2012.
The International Easter Egg Market at Mannheim’s Baumhainhalle hosts over 40 artists from Germany, Russia, France, Switzerland and Hungary. More at www.ostereiermarkt.com/mannheim.html