Day 10 – Historic Instruments and a Modern Orchestra

Wednesday in Vienna, our last full day here, started with historic instruments and ended with a performance by a wonderful orchestra.

Emma checking out some Renaissance brass instruments

The Collection of Ancient Musical Instruments is a large museum of instruments from Antiquity to Today. The strength of their holdings are Renaissance instruments, and there came from two collections – one focusing on instruments that were works of art and the other that had instruments for everyday use. Also exhibited here are pianos owned by Brahms and Mahler, Leopold Mozart’s violin, and other priceless instruments.

Some of our graduate students in the Prunksaal (State Hall) of the Austrian National Library

After the instrument collection, we spent a few minutes in the State Hall of the Austrian National Library. This is a magnificent room, and is where Mozart studied the works of Bach and Handel in the 1780’s.

That evening, we attended a concert in the Musikverein. This is probably the most famous concert hall in the world: Mahler conducted here, Brahms performed and attended many concerts here.

The Vienna Symphony Orchestra performed an all-Russian concert with music of Tanajev (overture and large choral-orchestral work) and Tchaikovsky (4th Symphony). Attending a concert here is always a treat. The hall is spectacularly beautiful, and just being able to look around is often worth the ticket price. Beyond that, the hall has one of the finest acoustics of any concert hall in the world.

A group picture in the Large Hall of the Musikverein

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