© Tom Thiele

Behind the scenes: Indoor tours in Leipzig

Fancy a behind-the-scenes look at Leipzig’s art, culture and media? To satisfy your curiosity, a number of institutions in Leipzig offer guided tours of their buildings. Gain an insight into the artistic diversity and cultural history of Leipzig. 
Perhaps this is just the right thing to add to the cultural programme of your conference or congress in the Saxon city? Here are four places that offer guided tours of their premises.

Music, history and art at the Gewandhaus in Leipzig

Leipzig’s Gewandhäuser have been a source of inspiration for music and art lovers for almost 250 years. The city’s musical history comes alive on a guided tour of the third and only surviving Gewandhaus building in Leipzig, which was built in 1981.

The famous composer and pianist Felix Mendelssohn Bartholdy once conducted in the first of the three Gewandhaus concert halls, which was originally the guildhall of the city’s cloth merchants – hence its name, which roughly translates as “cloth hall” – while Arthur Nikisch and Wilhelm Furtwängler performed in the second.
The initiative for the construction of the third and current Gewandhaus came from the Gewandhaus music director, Kurt Masur. With its impressive Great Hall, which seats 1,900 people, it was the only new concert hall to be built in the GDR.

A tour of this architectural gem will give you a fascinating insight into the world of the Gewandhaus Orchestra. Meet great names in music history, admire the majestic Schuke organ and learn about the outstanding acoustics.
In the foyers you can marvel not only at Europe’s largest contemporary ceiling fresco, but also numerous paintings and sculptures.

Our tip: The Gewandhaus is also ideal for a unique evening event to round off your conference or congress in Leipzig.

The main stage and more at Leipzig Opera

Raise the curtain! In 1960, Leipzig Opera was the only opera house to open in the GDR. Its repertoire is wide-ranging, from classical music, ballet and musicals to music programmes for young people. But what is it like behind the heavy curtain of Leipzig Opera? How does it feel to be on the big opera stage instead of in front of it? And what does the costume collection have to offer?

A guided tour of the listed opera house will answer these questions and allow you to immerse yourself in this mysterious and venerable world. You will also experience the excellent acoustics, marvel at the unique architecture and admire the impressive interior of the opera house.

Johann Sebastian Bach, Gustav Mahler, Robert and Clara Schumann – Leipzig boasts a rich and varied musical history. Extend your supporting programme and combine a guided tour of Leipzig Opera with a musical sightseeing tour of Leipzig.

Past meets present: Tour of the Federal Administrative Court

Today’s Federal Administrative Court in Leipzig has a chequered history and impressive neoclassical architecture.
The then Imperial Court of Justice – the Reichsgericht – was inaugurated in 1879. It was used by the National Socialists as a courthouse from 1933 to 1945: judges critical of the regime were dismissed and the remaining legal practitioners were brought into line.

During the GDR era, the neoclassical building served a number of purposes, including as a museum. After reunification, it was first used as the Federal Administrative Court of the Federal Republic of Germany in 1992.
The building opened in its current form in 2002 after four years of renovation and modernisation. Since then, as the Federal Administrative Court, it has been the highest administrative court in the Federal Republic of Germany.

But what lies behind the façade of justice? What stories does the former Imperial Court of Justice have to tell about its time as the Dimitroff Museum and the Museum of Fine Arts, or indeed as a dubbing studio?

A guided tour of the Federal Administrative Court provides answers to these questions, as well as a glimpse of the closed courtrooms and the former private rooms of the last president of the Reichsgericht, Erwin Bumke.

Take one: Studio tours at MDR

Did you know that the local public broadcaster, Mitteldeutscher Rundfunk, is based in Leipzig? The MDR and media city leipzig are located in the south of Saxony’s media centre – also a perfect location for meetings and conferences.

On a tour of the MDR studios, your delegates will discover the sides of Mitteldeutscher Rundfunk that are normally hidden from radio listeners and television viewers.

The MDR studio tour takes in the TV and radio studios and the premises of media city leipzig. Especially the film and television fans among your delegates will not want to miss this part of the supporting programme!


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