Baroque Masterpieces Charlottenburg Palace Berlin

Schloss Charlottenburg Berlin

Last night I enjoyed an interesting concert at Charlottenburg Palace. Dressed in period costumes, the Berlin Residence Orchestra performed baroque masterpieces by Vivaldi, Händel, Bach, and others.

Scholss Charollotenberg

Before the concert, some savored a three-course “themed candlelight dinner”. Years ago, I experienced a similar but disappointing dinner in Salzburg, so I opted for the concert only. Charlottenburg Palace is in Charlottenburg-Wilmersdorf District and easily accessible via U-Bahn. From November 26 through December 27 a popular Christmas market is set up on Palace grounds.

Queen Charlotte – by Johann Georg Ziesenis

_____________

Today Charlottenburg is a working palace and one of Berlin’s most “grandiose event venues”. It’s a great place for concerts.

_____________

Schloss Charlottenburg During Blood Moon – U. Gernhoefer Photocase

Charlottenburg Palace History

Charlottenburg is Berlin’s last remaining palace “reflecting the one-time grandeur of the Hohenzollern Family“. The complex covers several blocks along the banks of River Spree. Restaurants, hotels, and cafés near the Palace feature paintings of the grounds and Queen Charlotte. The Palace is surrounded by a beautiful baroque garden best visited during the day, but also lovely at night.

Queen Sophia Charlotte

In 1696, Duchess Sophia Charlotte of Hanover, wife of Prussian Friedrich III, commissioned construction of Lützenburg, a “summer residence in Lützow”.

King Frederick I – Emerson Kent

_____________

“Originally a petite summer retreat, Lützenburg grew into an exquisite baroque palace with opulent apartments, festival halls, collections of precious porcelain, and paintings by French 18th century masters.”

_____________

Orangery Garden – Pinterest

Soon after his coronation in 1701, King Frederick and Queen Sophie Charlotte expanded their Lützenburg residence. Tragically, Charlotte died of pneumonia in 1705 at the young age of 37. After her death, Frederick renamed the residence Charlottenburg Palace, built a magnificent dome, and added an “elongated building” named the Great Orangery.

Great Orangery Schloss Charlottenburg – Qiez.de

_____________

“Loud against quiet, solo against ensemble, a competition of instruments dominates the Baroque period…”

_____________

Baroque Masterpieces Compère – Pixel and Dot Photography

Berlin Residence Orchestra

In 2006, the Berlin Residence Orchestra began staging classical music concerts in Charlottenburg’s Great Orangery. The chamber music ensembles formed within the orchestra play at events throughout Berlin. The staged atmosphere transports audiences beck in time to when kings listened to Baroque music.

Berliner Residenz Konzerte Schloss Charlottenburg – Berlin Welcome Card

“Derived from the Portuguese barroco, or ‘oddly shaped pearl,’ since the nineteenth century, the term baroque describes the period in Western European music from 1600 to 1750.” The concerts are popular with locals as well as tourists.

Chamber Music Players

Last night, the chamber orchestra consisted of a harpsichord, cello, bass, flute, violin, and four violas. There were flute, viola, and cello solos. Soprano Sara Gouzy and countertenor Georg Arssenij Bochow were the featured vocalists, and their operatic solos and duos were fantastic.

Charlottenburg Palace Dome – Framepool

For a while, the commentator (compère) presented parts of the narrative in English and German – it was obvious he didn’t care for it. Later he spoke German only, so I missed the nuances and jokes that made others in the audience laugh….The program was slightly confusing to follow, but the music was wonderful.

Berlin Residence Concerts – Image Berlin

The program included well-known German and Italian composers, kings, and friends of kings:

Anna Fedotova Concertmaster – ResearchGate

Anna Fedotova Concertmaster

Multi-talented Russian Anna Fedotova studied at the Far East Art Academy in Vladivostok and later at Moscow’s Gnessin Academy. She’s participated in Salzburg masterclasses and is a “laureate of competitions in many countries”. Fedotova co-founded the Tango Ensemble Coamorous” and toured with the group throughout Europe. Last night she played a lovely violin solo.

Alexandra Rossmann Musical Director

Alexandra Rossmann Musical Director

Alexandra Rossmann is from Minsk Belarus, where she studied piano and became a teacher and accompanist. She performed at international festivals and made her début at the Belarusian Philharmonic at the age of 17. Rossmann moved to Germany and studied at the Musikhochschule Munich. Currently she lives in Potsdam and teaches piano. Alexandra played harpsichord during the performance.

Sara Gouzy Soprano

Sara Gouzy Soprano

French soprano Sara Gouzy completed her piano studies at the Conservatoire de Toulouse. She studied voice at the Academy of Music Hanns Eisler Berlin and attended masterclasses in France and Germany. In 2012 Gouzy participated in projects at the “Hanns Eisler” and Berlin’s Komische Oper (Comic Opera). Gouzy is a scholarship holder of the association “Yehudi Menuhin Live Music Now” and soloist with the Berlin Residence Orchestra.

Georg Arssenij Bochow Countertenor

Georg Arssenij Bochow Countertenor

The German-Russian countertenor Georg Arssenij Bochow began his career as a chorister in the Berlin Staats- und Domchor and received Canada’s Saint Nicolas Award from the Royal School of Church Music. He began vocal studies at the “Hanns Eisler” in 2011 and took masterclasses. Bochow appeared with the Deutsche Oper Berlin in the world première of Evan Gardner’s Die Unterhändlerin (The Negotiator).

Great Orangery at Night

_____________

“There are many misconceptions and mysteries about the countertenor. Some take it for a whim of nature, though this type of voice has nothing mysterious about it.”

_____________

Charlottenburg Palace Courtyard

This is the first time I’ve experienced a countertenor in close quarters – a beautiful but most unusual voice!

Salvador Dalí Museum Berlin

The Persistence of Memory 1931 Salvador Dalí

Berlin’s Dalí Museum is a permanent exhibition at Potsdamer Platz with more than 450 original artworks by Spanish artist Salvador Dalí. The museum offers “insight into Dalí’s virtuosity and mastership of almost all art techniques”.

Salvador Dali Theater Museum Figueres Spain

I had no idea what a diverse artist Dalí was. The amazing exhibits include original lithographs, illustrations, photography, sculpting, xylographs, drypoint etchings, mixed-media graphics, héliogravures, Olympic medals, jewelry, and even a short film. Videos placed throughout the museum illustrate techniques used to create some of his work.

Salvador Dalí

Salvador Dalí Surrealism Paintings Photo Gallery

Although I’ve never been a Dalí fan, his Surrealistic paintings are fascinating, and this exhibit gave me new appreciation of his art and creativity. He’s considered a genius. In addition to his more avant-garde paintings, Dalí created beautiful landscapes and portraiture. This is an impressive list of his works created between 1913 and 1983.

The Berlin museum is a great introduction to Dalí’s complex world. Over 70 years he produced 1160 artworks and even illustrated his own life for the opening of his museum in Figueres Spain!

The Dream Caused by the Flight of a Bee 1944 Salvador Dalí

Boat 1918 Salvador Dalí

Salvador Dalí

_____________

“Surrealist artists rejected the rational in art; and instead aimed to channel the unconscious to unlock the power of imagination.”

_____________

The Burning Giraffe 1937 Salvador Dalí

Dali used extensive symbolism in his work. Recurring “images in his paintings include elephants with brittle legs which evoke weightlessness; ants, thought to be his symbol for decay and death; and melting watches, perhaps symbolic of non-linear human perception of time”.

Tuna Fishing 1967 Salvador Dalí

Swans Reflecting Elephants 1937 Salvador Dalí

_____________

Dali became the “most influential Surrealist artist; and perhaps the most renowned twentieth century painter after Pablo Picasso”.

_____________

Galatea of the Spheres 1952 Salvador Dalí

Lobster Telephone 1936 Salvador Dalí

The museum contains so much info, it’s likely I’ll visit again. Some of Dalí’s most famous paintings include:

  • The Burning Giraffe
  • Tuna Fishing
  • Dream Caused by the Flight of a Bee
  • Galatea of the Spheres
  • Metamorphosis of Narcissus
  • Christ of Saint John of the Cross
  • The Great Masturbator
  • Soft Construction with Boiled Beans
  • Swans Reflecting Elephants
  • The Persistence of Memory

A Shower of Jasmine 1954 Salvador Dalí

Salvador Dalí Surrealist