Rüdesheim, Germany – home of Siegfried’s Musikkabinett
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Rüdesheim has been famous for its Drosselgasse since the end of the 19th C. The Castle Broemserburg houses the famous Wine Museum. The Museum of Medieval Torture attracts surprising number of tourists every year.
The beautifully designed and kept facades of the city houses of local gentry and rich wine merchants bear witness to the years of prosperity here.
Rüdesheim’s most famous landmark is the 10.5 m/33 ft high statue of Germania which commemorates the creation of the German Empire in 1871. The commanding position of the statue provides breathtaking views of the Rhein valley.
It’s certainly impressive, for its sheer size as much as its heroic character, although some may find it a little overblown. Whatever the merits of the monument, you will certainly be impressed by the stunning panorama of the surrounding landscape.
Siegfrieds Mechanisches Musikkabinett
Siegfried Wendel’s museum, Siegfrieds Mechanisches Musikkabinett, has an extensive variety of mechanical musical instruments, distributed throughout a 15th century castle near the town centre.
One of the largest collections of self-playing musical instruments, robotic automatons and the like in the world, it is just a few metres distant from the famed Drosselgasse in the ancient Brömserhof. You can experience some of the most sophisticated examples of fine mechanical art put to the service of popular entertainment. The collection encompasses a great range including the most varied instruments, ranging from a delicate musical watch right up to the gigantic concert piano-orchestrion.
One room is devoted to mechanical instruments that produce the violin sound. The room includes a Hupfeld Phonoliszt Violina, a one-of-a-kind Hupfeld Phonoliszt Violina Orchestra, a newly-made Hupfeld Phonoliszt Violina with six violins; the only example of a Poppers Violinovo (piano, percussion and a single violin with one bow that bounces back and forth between two playing strings) and, last but not least, an unrestored Mills Violano (double).
The castle’s wine cellar houses the fairground organs of the collection. The highlight of this group of organs was the 80-key Gebruder Bruder with a rare Oriental style facade. Also there are a Style 107 Gebruder Bruder fairground organ and a 57-key Gebruder Wellershaus fairground organ.
Siegfried Wendel came up with the idea of collecting mechanical musical instruments during his honeymoon in Los Angeles when he visited an open-air museum which housed a large collection of mechanical pianos. Wendel’s collection contains more than 350 exhibits and has been open to the public since 1969. It is presently located at the Brömserhof, in the Drosselgasse on the recently acquired family property.
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Travel to Germany: a Europe Tour that’s a lot more than Beer, Lederhosen and