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Vienna – a Music Capital

Vienna The Music Capital header

There is no doubt that Vienna is one of the world’s capitals of art and culture, boasting an immensely long and celebrated history of music legends and masterpieces they wrote and which are still taught in schools and performed in concert halls across the globe.

Till this very day, Vienna is home to the leading musical ensembles and the most brilliant of architectural wonders with concert halls and stages created to house music in all its forms. Some of the most famous composers in the history of human kind have lived, created and performed in this city, such as Ludwig van Beethoven and Joseph Haydn.

You can step into their world and see what it was like to live and write music in their time, and also see and hear what it is like performing those pieces in contemporary Vienna. There are many places here visited by people from across the world to have this experience, but let’s take a look at some of the most popular.

Mozarthaus

One of the most celebrated composers of all time, Wolfgang Amadeus Mozart, often moved during his time in Vienna, but he lived the longest in this apartment, from 1784 until 1787. It’s the only one that still exists for the contemporary audiences to see.

This was the time when Mozart was famous among his contemporaries, and this house was the venue for the creation of some of his best-known compositions, including “The Marriage of Figaro.” Mozarthaus was opened in 2006, and it’s spread across 1,000m2 on six levels. The apartment on the first floor is a beautiful place, with six rooms and a kitchen.

This is not your typical house-museum, meaning that you will not be seeing furniture or daily objects that Mozart used. Instead, his house focuses on providing the information about this great composer, in addition to certain historical exhibits. There are also audio-visual installations and excellent audio guides, including special ones for kids.

House of Music

Here’s another fascinating must-see in Vienna. Located in the Palace of Archduke Charles, where the founder of the Vienna Philharmonic, Otto Nicolai, lived some 150 years ago, House der Musik was opened in 2000, drawing large crowds and quickly becoming one of the city’s most visited places.

Austria’s first museum of sound and music is housed in an exhibition space of 5,000m2 on five floors, where you can enjoy a great variety of hi-tech interactive and multimedia presentations that will tell you about the history and relevance of music, from the oldest-known musical instruments to the many contemporary instruments and even the future computer music. But you will not only listen and see in this house – you will also feel and create music yourself, you will become a virtual conductor, and you will play piano by climbing the stairs, among other entertaining and educational options.

Musikverein

Time to dress up and enjoy a concert in true Vienna style in the city’s traditional concert hall and the home of the world-renowned Vienna Philharmonic orchestra. Musikverein was inaugurated in 1870, built as the new concert hall on land given by Emperor Franz Joseph I of Austria in 1863. It was designed in the neoclassical style of an ancient Greek temple by Danish architect Theophil Hansen, which included a concert hall and a smaller chamber music hall.

The current organ was rebuilt in 2011, but it was first installed in 1907 by the firm of Rieger Orgelbau that was respected by great musicians, including Marcel Dupré and Franz Schmidt. As a matter of fact, one of the original object of this great edifice was a historic pipe organ built by Friedrich Ladegast, a famous German organ builder. Today, the names of the six beautiful halls refer to gold, glass, metal, stone, wood, and Johannes Brahms, while the Great Hall is considered one of the best concert halls in the world because of its excellent acoustics. Additionally, the building has been renovated since 2001, and new rehearsal halls have been added in the basement.

Konzerthaus

Another day, another musical wonder in Vienna for you to enjoy. It’s time to visit a concert hall which celebrates both traditional and new musical styles, created for a wider audience than those who visit Musikverein to enjoy a variety of different types of music. It was built over a century ago and finished in 1913, by architects Ferdinand Fellner, Hermann Helmer and Ludwig Baumann in the Art Nouveau style.

In the same year, Konzerthaus got its historic organ. The building was completely renovated between 1997 and 2000, with another hall added, seating up to 400 people. There are four beautiful halls now available: Großer Saal, Mozartsaal, Schubertsaal, and Berio Saal. Konzerthaus is home to the Vienna Symphony, the Vienna Chamber Orchestra, the Wiener Singakademie, and the Klangforum Wien.

That’s not all, as there are concerts held here by a number of renowned organizations, including the Vienna Philharmonic, while Konzerthaus also hosts several amazing festivals.

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