Composer haunts in Stuttgart, Berlin, Prague

Grant Chu Covell

[July 2015.]

A recent trip allowed for some exploring in Stuttgart, Berlin and Prague. Here are some composer ephemera and monuments.

A bust of Schubert on the grounds of the Liederhalle Stuttgart.

schubert_statue_stuttgart

Also in Stuttgart at the Württemberg State Museum (Landesmuseum Württemberg) in the Old Granary (Stiftsfruchtkasten) was a collection of musical instruments, including a few of Mauricio Kagel’s: Klingelschuhe, Tischtennisschläger aus Plexiglas mit Schlegel, Federdose, and Schlauchtrompete.

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kagel_insts2_stuttgart

On the wall was this wonderful picture of the composer.

kagel_stuttgart

As part of its permanent display, the museum had a Stroh violin and a microtonal piano.

strohviolin_stuttgart

pfeifferpiano_stuttgart

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In Berlin there is a subway station (U-bahn, line U7) named after Wagner decorated with a tiling scheme he would probably have detested.

richardwagnerplatz_u7_berlin

At the Alte Nationalgalerie you can spy Josef Danhauser’s painting of Liszt at the piano (Liszt am Flügel, 1840) surrounded by others (extra points for noting Rossini and Paganini standing in back, George Sand seated, and the bust of Beethoven).

jdanhauser_lisztamflugel_berlin

Had you wanted to take something home, there was this bust in the gift shop. The copy of C.C. Zumbusch’s 1867 original could be had for €2,800.

fliszt_bust_berlin2

Elsewhere at the German Historical Museum (Deutsches Historisches Museum) you could find paintings of Händel (Balthasar Denner, 1733) and Mendelssohn (Theodor Hildebrandt, 1834/35).

bdenner_gfhandel_berlin

th_fmendelssohn_ berlin

Wandering near the Staatsoper, I was pleased to see the advertisement for Feldman’s Neither.

mfeldman_neither_berlinstaatsoper

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In Prague, I made the pilgrimage to the Smetana Museum (Muzeum Bedřicha Smetany). It sits right on the Vltava very close to Charles Bridge. Because of its ornamented exterior, it appears in many tourist photos.

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Inside the museum you can find biographical displays and the composer’s piano.

bsmetana_piano_prague

A plaque on a neighboring building commemorates Mozart’s friend Josef Mysliveček (1737-81).

jmysliveček_novotnéholávka_prague

Several blocks away is the Antonín Dvořák Museum, and they have his piano, watch and wallet among other ephemera.

advorak_piano_prague

advorak_watch_prague

advorak_wallet_prague

 There is a page from a New World sketchbook on display.

advorak_nysketchbook_prague

Among others who passed through Prague was Beethoven who stayed on Lázenská Street.

lvb_lázenská_prague