It’s almost to the end of our first full day in Leipzig and it already feels like we’ve done so much. We started this morning with a walking tour of the city. My favorite part was stepping inside the Leipzig Orchestra Hall, which features a gigantic three-tiered painted mural right inside the lobby. It was an amazing depiction of concerts, choirs and orchestras, and it arched above our heads. We also saw a ton of sculpture outside as we walked through the city. One thing that I appreciate here as opposed to the United States is the abundance of art just out and about on the streets and sidewalks. It makes for a really cool atmosphere when any moment you might round a corner and run into a 12-foot tall statue of Mendelssohn!
This afternoon we had our first rehearsal with the Leipzig Baroque Orchestra, which was really wonderful. The musicians are so amazing and talented, but yet they all seem to have really down-to-earth and approachable personalities. They make it look so easy to play on period instruments such as the harpsichord and vasco da gama (kind of like a cello), even though I’m sure they’ve been perfecting their abilities for years. It was also really interesting to watch Dr. Cock and the orchestra members converse in a mixture of German and English. Quite the cultural exchange!
We finished our day with dinner at the Caffebaum restaurant, which is famous for being a musician hang-out. Mahler and Schumann are among those that spent time at this restaurant, and it’s also the birthplace of Bach’s “Coffee Cantada.” We had a delicious meal, but I enjoyed the dessert the most (of course). My sweet tooth was in heaven as we ate a small sampler of a few different treats – raspberry sorbet, banana pudding, cinnamon ice cream and some sort of poofy donut filled with fruit. Even though I’m not really sure what the last one was, I do know it was delicious!
I hope everyone has enjoyed reading this blog so far! It’s great for me, because I can make sure I remember everything. I’ve found that part of the difficulty of traveling is simply keeping all of the days straight. Tours, places and memories can start to blend together after a while, and I’m sure I would end up telling the same stories multiple times if I didn’t have something to keep me on track. So danke schön for helping me out, and keep reading!
May 20: Concert - Leipzig, Lutherkirche (7:30 p.m.)
May 23: Service - Seyda (10 a.m.) and Gentha (1 p.m.)
May 24: Concert – Rottenburg am Neckar, Wallfahrtskirche Weggental (7 p.m.)
May 25: Choral Workshop – Rottenburg am Neckar (9:30 a.m.)
May 26: Concert - Bernburg, Schlosskirche (7:30 p.m.)
May 27: Concert - Köthen, St. Agnus kirche (7:30 p.m.)
May 28 - Service - Leipzig, Thomaskirche (5 p.m.)
May 29 - Cantata - Leipzig, Thomaskirche (3 p.m.)
May 30 - Service - Leipzig, Thomaskirche 10 (a.m.)