Laeiszhalle – Home to Hamburg’s Classical Music Scene:
As far as concert halls go, Hamburg’s Laeiszhalle (previously known as the Musikhalle Hamburg) is relatively young. Inaugurated in June 1908, it was the largest and most modern concert hall in Germany at that time.
Laeiszhalle was made possible through the generosity of Carl Heinrich Laeisz, one of the Hamburg shipping magnates. When Mr. Laeisz passed away, he left 1.2 million German Reichsmark for the construction of “a place worthy of the performance and for the enjoyment of noble and serious music”. His widow Sophie Laeisz later increased the amount of the donation and thus giving the people of Hamburg and elsewhere the gift of this beautiful neo-Baroque concert hall.
A Historical Concert Hall
The Laeiszhalle has played an important roll in hosting classical concerts in Hamburg since its beginning. Master composers and artists like Richard Strauss, Sergei Prokofiev, Igor Stravinsky, and Paul Hindemith have all performed and conducted their own works here. Other famous performers included Yehudi Menuhin when he was only 12 years old and the legendary Maria Callais. Another interesting fact is that after World War II, the British Forces Broadcasting Service used the Laeiszhalle as a broadcasting studio for the military station BFN. They must have liked jazz a lot as 60,000 jazz records were stored in the Brahms-Foyer.
The Centre of Hamburg’s Music Scene
The Laeiszhalle is home to the Hamburger Symphoniker, the Hamburg Philharmonic Orchestra, the NDR Symphony Orchestra as well as the Emsemble Resonanz. Each year some 400,000 music lovers visit the Laeiszhalle and the concert hall is about at capacity. Hamburg will soon have a new star-wars concert hall, the Elbphilharmonie Hamburg and between the two concert halls the classical music scene in Hamburg will be taken to new heights.
How to Get There:
From Hamburg Central Station:
- U2 to Gänsemarkt or Messehallen
- U1 to Stephansplatz
- Buses 35, 36, 3, 112 to Johannes-Brahms-Platz
- Buses 34, 5, 4, 109 to Stephansplatz