|Cream of Garlic Soup from Beethoven's house.|
Part 4 - Beethoven's 1st Apartment - Josefstadt Theater - Lobkowitz Palace - etc.
Day 4 (continued)
After returning to Vienna from Heiligenstadt we stopped in at the Cafe Restaurant Winter. Not only can one find the best cream of garlic soup in town, but it is also the same building B. first moved into when he set up permanent residence in Vienna when he was 22. At the time it was the "city-palace" of Prince Lichnowsky, one of B.'s most important early supporters. I mentioned this to the extremely nice waiter and he remarked "Really? I didn't know Beethoven lived here. That was before my time". Funny guy. The other thing to note is that this apartment is WAY out on the outskirts of Vienna. Which makes sense since it was his first lodging - he wasn't yet famous. Ironically, on the same street is the Trinity Church where Beethoven's funeral was held. I hadn't planned on visiting this site so it was a surprise to find it. Inside it's like no church I've ever seen before, but I'm no church expert either.
|Inside Trinity Church.|
|The descending curtain of the Josefstadt Theater stage.|
The remainder of the trip couldn't possibly live up to the preceding 4 and frankly it didn't. So I'll just summarize the highlights (and lowlights). The next day was a big disappointment for me. One thing I was looking forward to was going to the Lobkowitz Palace. Upstairs is the "Eroicasaal" which is where B. conducted the first rehearsals and performances of the 3rd Symphony - "Eroica". My plan was to listen to the Eroica while walking about the hall, just like in the movie "Eroica". I was crushed to find that the room was closed this week! I tried to bribe the gift shop lady into letting me up there but she wouldn't budge. Blast! I went across the street to view the windows of the Eroicasaal from afar and a kindly old man came up to me and started to talk to me about the building. That was really nice. The Viennese are extremely friendly I must say. Or was it perhaps the reincarnation of Beethoven himself who was trying to console me? After our conversation was over he suddenly disappeared. Or he just walked very fast...
|Front door of Lobkowitz Palace where the 1st Eroica rehearsal took place.|
here. We later bought some chocolate at Demel's and knocked on the door of Artaria's (one of Beethoven's early publishers - not the original building). One evening we had sausage hot dogs from a food stall inside a parking garage. What a great idea...I think. I had some serious "book-lust" at the Doblinger Musikhaus which is Vienna's largest sheet music store. Here I was able to look at gorgeous facsimile editions of Beethoven's 9th Symphony as well as the Eroica and Pastoral facimiles. The Eroica was only about $1800...that's alot of "sacher tortes". They are beautiful works of art even if they are facsimiles.
|Extremely expensive photocopies.|
|The Ballgasse alley where Beethoven strolled.|
My video tribute to the Theater an der Josefstadt:
Click on the square pic below to see more photos of Part 4.
You can watch here on Youtube as a slide show as well...
There were only 2 real disappointments on this trip and they were the closed Hofburg Redoutensaal and the closed Lobkowitz Eroicasaal. Fortunately we can take a virtual tour of the Redoutansaal here (look for the Grosse Redoutenstiege and then go into the room ahead) and here's a page with some good pictures of the Eroicasaal - also here - oh well, next time!
And here's some useful internet sites which helped me immensely for those who may be interested in making their own Beethoven pilgrimage to Vienna:
Beethoven homes on Google maps
I have to mention this book I got in Vienna which is simply the best single paper guide for searching for musician sites in Vienna.: David L. Nelson's "Vienna for the Music Lover:" I did months of research preparing for this trip and this book has almost everything I dug up.
Finally, I uploaded my exhaustive notes in preparing for this trip - it is a combined document including all relevant info I could find from the above links. It's not complete, and the formatting leaves something to be desired - but it should be helpful.....here.