blank.gif (65 Byte)
blank.gif (65 Byte)
 
 
blank.gif (65 Byte)
 
blank.gif (65 Byte)
 
blank.gif (65 Byte)
 
 
 
blank.gif (65 Byte)
 
blank.gif (65 Byte)
 
 
 
 
 
blank.gif (65 Byte)
 
blank.gif (65 Byte)
 
 
Musikvereinshaus
Musikvereinshaus - © Georg Tschannett - FOTOLIA
Image: Musikvereinshaus Vienna
In December 1857 members of the Musikverein were rejoicing about a "great, truly imperial Christmas present". The Emperor Franz Joseph 1 had given permission for the demolition of the old city walls and thereby ereaied the possibility for the expansion of ihe city over a wide area. This was the beginning of the Viennese Ringstrasse period. According to ihe Emperor's decree, new buildings, including an opera house, galleries and museums, were to be built on the Ringstrasse, and this was the source of hope that the Musikverein would finally be able to move out of its old building.
Image: Musikvereinshaus Vienna - www.musikverein.at
This building, in the centre of the city at number 12, Tuchlauben, had been taken over by the society in 1831 and contained the first real concert hall in Vienna. There was space for an audience of 700, a capacity which was soon not large enough to accommodate public demand.

The other activities of the expanding society, the archives and the conservatory, were also urgently in need of more space. Despite this, patience was demanded once again. Only in 1863 did the Emperor show himself in generous mood and allocate the soeiety a large plot of land opposite the Karlskirche.
The music lovers had the chance to add an impressive building to the ensemble of Ringstrasse architecture. They planned on a correspondingly large scale. There was to be space for two concert halls in the new building. Prominent architects including Theophil Hansen, August Siccard von Siccardsburg and Eduard van der Nüll were invited to produce drafts. Siccardsburg and van der Nüll, the designer of the Court Opera, declined. Hansen was the one who remaihed and he proved himself to be the very best choice.
Image: Musikvereinshaus
www.musikverein.at
The Main Concert Hall
Image: The Main Concert Hall
Musikverein Wien - www.musikverein.at
“As high as any expectations could be, they would still be exceeded by the first impression of the hall which displays an architectural beauty and a stylish splendour making it the only one of its kind.” This was the reaction of the press to the opening of the new Musikverein building and the first concert in the Großer Musikvereinssaal on 6 January 1870.

The impression must have been overwhelming – so overwhelming that Vienna’s leading critic, Eduard Hanslick, irritatingly brought up the question of whether this Großer Musikvereinssaal “was not too sparkling and magnificent for a concert hall”. “From all sides spring gold and colours.”

Was this splendour, as Hanslick as a shocked ascetic supposed, not a distraction from the music? Or does it rather have the exact opposite effect – as numerous music lovers have found until today – of directing the attention towards the music?

The festive atmosphere of this hall throws off everything “which reminds one of everyday life”, wrote one Viennese critic, Carl Eduard Schelle. He thought that the Großer Musikvereinssaal did not only provide the ideal atmosphere for music but was music in itself:

“... in the architectural details, in the ornament, the tones of colour such as in the separation of masses a perception does in fact manifest itself which one would like to call musical; should it be possible to think of Mozart’s great ‘Jupiter’ Symphony constructed in solid, visible forms, then this new concert hall in the Musikverein building would provide a suitable picture. Hansen and Mozart really do have related characteristics in common.”
Image: Musikverein Wien
www.musikverein.at
Image: Musikverein Wien
www.musikverein.at
The Großer Musikvereinssaal, exactly 48.80 metres long, 19.10 metres wide and 17.75 metres high, combines the in itself static, stabile basic form of a rectangle with enlivening details. The walls and the ceiling are rhythmically arranged, forms and colours enter into an interesting interplay.

The ceiling paintings by August Eisenmenger – Apollo and the nine Muses, surrounded by allegorical figures – create a dynamic counterpoint to the dominant golden tone of the hall.

Another no less attractive contrast is the plain white of the sculptures by Franz Melnitzky. The pairs of female figures, indolently elegant, moulded over the balcony doors and the organ, perfectly correspond to the straight-backed caryatids in the stalls – feminine variations in the historical interplay of the main hall.

In the midst of this, the art of music takes on the concrete form of marble busts of famous composers of the past (only masters who had already died before 1870 were accepted into this illustrious gallery). And above all this there is the row of arched windows. Daylight also plays its part in Hansen’s symphony of colour.

Beyond all artistic details one thing particularly distinguishes the main concert hall, its aesthetics fulfilled what the founding fathers had in mind as an idea of the Musikverein. This hall, in which each area is just as important as another, excludes nobody but rather creates connections.

More than two thousand people, 1,744 seated and 300 standing, come together as one audience. To experience music among friends, this is what makes the Gesellschaft der Musikfreunde so special.
Text source in extracts:
Gesellschaft der Musikfreunde in Wien
Archive, Library, Collections
1010 Vienna, Bösendorferstr. 12
map
post to a friend print nach oben top of page
Views of Vienna
Aqua Terra Zoo
Augarten
Belvedere Palace
Danube Tower
Donauinsel
Eroicahaus
Gasometer
Grinzing
Hundertwasser House
Kärntnerstraße
Konzerthaus
Mozart's Apartment
Museum of
Military History

Musikvereinshaus
Naschmarkt
Spanish Court
Riding School

Parliament Building
Prater
Riesenrad
(Giant Ferris Wheel)

Schönbrunn Palace
Secession
State Opera
St. Stephen’s Cathedral
Virgilkapelle
Zoo Vienna
History
Carnuntum
Siege of Vienna 1529
Battle of Vienna 1683
Maria Theresia
W. A. Mozart
Ludwig v. Beethoven
Battle of Aspern 1809
Battle of Wagram 1809
Congress of Vienna
Johann Strauß
Franz Joseph I
Sisi - Empress Elisabeth
Sisi Part 2
Austro-Hungary Empire
Sigmund Freud
Anschluß 1938
Bombing of Vienna
Flak towers
Vienna Offensive 1945
Occupation
State Treaty
Summit 1961
OPEC raid 1975
SALT II treaty 1979
Austromir 1991
Vienna
General Information
Location
Countryside
Climate
Population
Economy
Tourism
Transportation
Public Facilities
Art, culture
and science

State Constitution
Austrian Armed Forces
Religion
The Third Man
Fiaker
Sachertorte
Coffee
Viennese Schnitzel
Wiener Hafen
Twin City Liner
Vienna Airport
OPEC
UNO City
IAEA
U.S. Embassy
 
 
blank.gif (65 Byte)
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
Internet Portal
Betriebsges.m.b.H.

Praterstrasse 33/20
A-1020 Vienna
Tel: +43/01/9580808
Fax: +43/01/9580909
E-Mail: office@citype.com
www.citype.com
FN 200659 m
ATU 50515900
Informationspflicht lt. E-Commerce-Gesetz (ECG)
 
WIEN-VIENNA.AT associates itself with a liberal, tolerant, cosmopolitan, ecumenical and politically neutral world view.
Diversity of information and the support of free formation of opinion for people of every age, every social levels, cultures, denominations and political orientations are matters of concern for us.
WIEN-VIENNA.AT is a link and information platform with the aim to inform about Vienna while at the same time creating a collection of links from official and private Vienna-related internet pages. We strive to maximise the density of the presented information about Vienna. In part, contents of this link and information platform originate from websites about Vienna. Images and texts where the author is known are provided with an acknowledgement and a link to the respective site. In case of breached property rights with certain images, we kindly ask you to notify us and we will remove the respective images or excerpts from the platform or we will add an appropriate acknowledgement of ownership.
design by gaube - 2003