News April . h-moll Messe . Wien 2018 (EN)
written by Qadira B., translated by Britta S.weiterlesen
Die deutsche Version findet ihr unter Neuigkeiten (2)
Dear friends of the Caravan of Peace,
as the day of departure to our concert in Vienna is coming closer, and spring announces itself in a spirit of optimism and in all its beauty, I would like to tell you about my encounter with Lisa, who is considerately preparing our stay in Vienna – and also singing as an alto in our choir.
Some say Vienna is the gate to the Orient, showing clear impact from Eastern Europe, the Balkans and even the Far East. The city’s alleyways host surprises, hidden gems - the legacy of the various cultures and people who have met and lived here and in the same colorful variety still do today.
Thursday lunchtime – 31 Mai 2018, Minorite Church We will meet for our rehearsals in the Minorite Church, where the concert will take place as well. The church is situated in the heart of the city of Vienna, the center of the first district, next to the Office of the Federal Chancellor at Minorite Square – a venue well known in Vienna. Frequently host to classical concerts, this church is very much suited for our event. It is, furthermore, visited on sightseeing tours as one of the major Vienna sights, which enables tourists and passers-by the possibility of being our guests for the concert. The photo shows the church in its finest spring attire.
Thursday night - 31 Mai, House of Peace Dr. Fawzia Al-Rawi, born in Irak and head of the house in 9/7 Albrechtsbergergasse, is speaking during our peace concert as one of the religious representatives. The House of Peace, which is a center for female spirituality and Sufism, offers a variety of events, whirling dance and meditation, which all focus on supporting an opening of the heart and evoke a feeling of being embedded in the great laws of the universe beyond egocentricity and the norms of society. One of their staff is singing in our choir!After our first rehearsal, we will have the opportunity to take part in a meditation - a Dhikr. If you want to learn more, see http://www.haus-des-friedens.at.
Jewish Square and Holocaust-Memorial Vienna is a place burdened by history, as it has frequently fallen a victim to destruction. Close to Minorite Church and half way to the city’s Temple, the synagogue, we find the Jewish Square, hosting the Holocaust Memorial and the Misrachi-Haus - a branch of the Jewish Museum of Vienna. I found the following information about the building on Wikipedia: The outside surfaces of the building are cast library shelves turned inside out. The spines of the books are facing inwards and are not visible, therefore the titles of the volumes are unknown and the content of the books remains unrevealed. The shelves of the memorial appear to hold endless copies of the same edition, which stand for the vast number of the victims, and the stories of their lives. The double doors are cast with the panels inside out, and have no doorknobs or handles. They suggest the possibility of coming and going, but do not open.The memorial represents,a library whose books are shown on the outside but are unreadable. The memorial can be understood as an appreciation of Judaism as a religion of the "book"; however, it also speaks of a cultural space of memory and loss created by the genocide of the European Jews. All around the memorial we find engraved the names of the concentration camps where Austrian Jews have been murdered: Auschwitz, Bergen-Belsen, Buchenwald, Dachau, …
Friday night - 1 June, City Temple, Alef Alef, Or ChadaschCity Temple Vienna has a distinct Jewish history, having produced many famous names (Sigmund Freud, Karl Kraus, Arthur Schnitzler). However, it is much burdened. The Anschluß of Austria to the German Reich on 15 March 1938, brought immediate radical and brutal violence to the Jewish population. Many of them being deported and their synagogues destroyed – except the City Temple. Situated remote from sight in a housing ensemble, it was the only one of 130 synagogues spared. A limited number of us is able to attend the Shabbat celebration there – we received registration details earlier on from Lisa.
Kosher restaurant Alef Alef After rehearsals on Friday we have an option to gather at Alef Alef, next to the City Temple, in order to meet Prof. Kurt Rosenkranz, who is talking to us during the Shabbat meal. Aged 90, he is one of the few remaining survivors of the holocaust who have returned to their home in Vienna after the war. There is a very interesting documentary on TV
Or Chadasch Another option for us to participate in a Shabbat celebration is Or Chadasch in 2 Robertgasse (see details sent by Lisa).
Saturday night – 2 June, after the concert, Burggarten On Saturday night, after our concert we are meeting in front of the butterfly house in the Burggarten, one of the beautiful public Vienna parks. We are having falafel sandwiches, ordered from an Israeli restaurant, which we can enjoy outdoors under the beautiful Vienna sky! In the unlikely event of rain, Lisa has found an alternative space: she’s a treasure!
Sunday morning – 3 June, Peace Pagoda The morning after our concert, there is an opportunity to see the Buddhist Peace Pagoda and Temple together. It is beautifully situated on the banks of the Donau from where you can see the sunrise! Lisa feels a personal connection to the spot, having had the opportunity to take part in many peace marches. She also played a vital role in the development of this space of peace. This is one of about 100 Peace Pagodas in the world, built by the Japanese Buddhist Order Nipponzan Myohoji. The Order practices peace marches, chants, interreligious prayers and fasting. It was founded by Venerable Nichidatsu Fuji. Vilayat Inayat Khan, who initiated the peace concerts performing Bach’s b-minor mass, met Fuji in India. Later Khan said about Fuji that he had been a person surely being already enlightened in his lifetime. Reverent Gyosei Masunaga, current leader of the Peace Pagoda, is chanting a prayer during the concert on Saturday night. He also knew Vilayat Inayat Khan and attended his seminars in Vienna. On Sunday morning we are received by him personally to chant for peace together.
- A beautiful conclusionof inspiring days in Vienna!
...the rehearsals for the concert have already started at different places, Vienna, Gersfeld, Wiesbaden...
...looking forward to our main rehearsal weekend in May, Bad Homburg!
Maarten und Madhu