Like a constant reminder of how small we are, the Thomas Church in Leipzig towered over the city.
The gothic house of God, that dates back to the 12th century, appears to mock (or defy) time, not having lost its overpowering effect on its admirers – myself among them. Only the weathered stone walls, which have been bleached from the sun and partially marked in a harshly fading black, tell about the years passed. The walls are reaching for the sky, where the sun meets the pyramid rooftops in the middle of the day.
The most intriguing features are stained windows that show biblical scenes along with distinguished personas, such as Martin Luther or Johann Sebastian Bach. Bach’s statue, a bronze monument of a local mastermind, showing the classical musician wearing a stately coat and wig, is placed in front of the heavy wooden entrance door as if it were a guard. The whole building looks misplaced. It could have sprung from a gloomy graveyard with black ravens croaking nearby. –An image clashing with a contrasting reality: prestige cafes and boutiques.
Attracted to the sight, I peak up the high walls from every possible angle. Each time, the sun punishing me with a blinding ray and therefore putting me back in its shade. I find a hidden bench and lean my back against the cold stone, just listening.
Through the thick, excluding walls rings the dampened sound of soft melodies that seem out of this time. I can’t help but admire how in the atmosphere of musky paper books, the smoke of hundreds of burning candles and the scent of incense, something this beautiful could be created. Like a magical spell, the sounds enchant everyone who was close enough and willing to listen, like the mother and her toddler who’ve found my secret corner. The mother puts her finger to her lips, signaling to be quiet. ,,Listen”, she says, and the children’s eyes widen, suddenly looking at the mother, giving her a big smile as she detects the singing voices.
It is probably the Thomanerchor, which has made a name for itself since 1212 and was directed by Bach from 1723 until 1750 and is now filling the halls on Fridays and Saturdays.
This must be my fourth daytrip to Leipzig. I like to think that I have already seen most of the sights, yet I am always drawn back to the city because of its relaxed atmosphere and creative vibe. Even if you go to see nothing in particular, it feels as if you see everything at once. It basically seems too impossible to find a place that doesn’t hold something beautiful or unique for the beholder. –If not my word, then take the appearance of tourist groups wherever you go as proof.
Check out our “Vlog”: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=I2Z3l1LvD-8
Behind every corner, along every alley, vibrates the sound of the new Berlin. Besides the ensemble of modern and historical architecture, its artists, who give Leipzig its charm. –Basically being the cherry on top. Following the sound of music to a cluster of people, is an artist celebrating life through music or dancing. Often, they are world travelers with their true partner in crime –their instrument, often guitars – performing on big market squares or on the streets in the historical parts of town. To me, Leipzig will always sound like Indie guitar music.
Sometimes, it’s not necessarily the music, but the creative ambition that catches the eye. Artists re-invent themselves and appear as a new character on their stage. Under the trees, next to a wildcat statue, we spotted Darth Vader collecting a donation for the Imperial Empire as he plays his string instrument. – A desperate measure for such an iconic villain. May our donations lead you out of the Dark Side and help you bring balance to the Force.
For big music enthusiasts, Leipzig offers a free music walking tour called the Leipziger Notenspur for when you’re passing places like the Museum of Musical Instruments, the Schumann House, the Bach Museum or the Opera Leipzig.
Also, if you are looking for more impressions of Leipzig, make sure to stop by our last article, which is waiting with a big surprise for you. I promise, you will love it!