Category Archives: Theatre

Magnificent entertainment in the hunchback world


On the last Sunday in May we headed south of Vienna into a region in the State of Lower Austria known as the hunchback world. Nestled within this rather beautiful hill country is the small town of Bad Schönau, our destination for a day of wonderful entertainment.

The purpose of our trip was to take H and her friend to the Fabelhaft – a festival of storytelling through words, mime, puppetry, music and magic. What I had expected to be a fun day for the kids turned out to be marvellous entertainment for ‘children’ from 4 to 104!

My personal favourite was the feet puppetry of Laura Kibel from Italy:

I’ve posted a selection of pictures from her performance here

While they loved the feet puppetry, the girls couldn’t stop laughing at the silent comedy of the KGB Clowns from Russia. Their performance captured the audience who were drawn deeper and deeper into the crazy world created by two artists who had no need for words.

A selection of shots from their performance can be seen here

Other acts (amongst others) on the day included these wooden puppets….

…musical entertainment……

…storytelling….

….and magic…..

In addition to the festival, I was also rather taken by the village of Bad Schönau and the surrounding area…

As we sat drinking coffee in the sun, outside a local restaurant, the quiet of the Sunday morning was broken by the sounds of the village band playing as people came out from a church gathering:

The local church itself sits on a small hill dominating and defining its environment:

Walking through the fields near the village we came across this tiny chapel:

From the chapel we entered a small coppice and through the trees could be seen a local castle nestling on yet another hillside:

 

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Filed under Activities for kids, Art, Festivals, Live performances, Out and about in Lower Austria, Theatre, Uncategorized, Vienna Life

Showtime kids give star performances


Recently had a highly enjoyable time at the Vienna EnglishTheatre where the kids of Showtime, the theatres youth group, put on their musical production of ‘The Wizard of Oz’.

It was one of those days when I get to do my proud father routine and H’s performance was such that I could in all sincerity say well
done and bravo. In fact, all the youngster had worked so hard and put such an effort into the show that every single relative and friend, who made up the audience, was certainly able to say they had enjoyed good performances, as well as having played the role of supporter.

Being the English Theatre the show was staged in English. The performances were excellent but one was further impressed by the reality that for many of the kids taking part this was not their first language. The theatre group is relatively new but the teachers have already established a strong sense of identity and it is clear that the children really enjoy taking part.

This was my first chance to actually see a production at the English Theatre which is located in the 8th District but not far
from the City centre. As the name implies the theatre stages plays in English and looking at the 2011-12 season it won’t be long before I’m back there again:

http://www.englishtheatre.at/english/season-201112.html

http://www.showtime.co.at/

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Filed under Live performances, Music, Theatre, Vienna Life

The theatre, the breakfast, the museum, and the coffeehouse


Last Sunday, some friends and I took a stroll from the English Theatre round to the Museum Quarter. Zigzagging through the quiet
streets gave us a chance to enjoy some of the local architecture, as well as building up an appetite before settling down to a rather relaxing breakfast in the Museums Quarter (MQ). After which we intended taking a look at the works of some of
Austria’s most famous artists at the Leopold Museum before returning in the theatre in the afternoon.

Having dropped H off at the English Theatre, for the dress rehearsal of the English Youth Theatres musical production of the Wizard of Oz, we set off taking a roundabout route  through the 8th and into the 7th District with the promise of a late breakfast at one of the MQ’s restaurants:

http://www.englishtheatre.at/

Halle at the MQ:

The MQ and the Leopold Museum:

After Klimt and Schiele at the Leopold we returned to our walk:

And finally ….coffee at Elles Coffeehouse

 

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Filed under Coffee in Vienna, Environment, Museums Quarter, Theatre, Vienna Life, Wine, Beer & Food

The Canal, the bar and the beach


I recently took at stroll through part of Vienna’s 3rd District and along the canal to the city centre. Here are a few images I took along the way:

The area  I walked through was a mix of homes, shops, offices and factories. Some of the social housing in the area dates back to the First Republic, with many others dating from post war reconstruction. I understand the former properties are extremely popular. As in most parts of the city its worth looking up, when out walking, to see the range of building designs and to catch a glimpse of the roof gardens that can be found on many of the properties. The journey started outside the local theatre.

As in most parts of the city, when the weather is reasonable, public spaces were busily being used and enjoyed by people of all ages.

At this point the banks of the Danube canal are green and pleasant spaces with paths for walkers and cyclists with both groups sharing the facilities with joggers, dog walkers and fishermen. With major roads either side the area is not the quietest but is certainly a pleasant place for a stroll and again the experience is enhanced by taking the opportunity to look at the local building designs.

As you enter the central area of the canal you are confronted with a world of concrete, graffiti, buildings of various styles…..

…….and a car park….(no, it really is)….

……and space for deckchairs…..

….and boats with restaurants and bars…….

…..to accompany the food and drink you can also rest or swim……

……oh yes….and not forgetting the chance to spend some time at one of the canals ‘beaches’…..

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Filed under City Centre, Danube Canal, Environment, Theatre, Vienna Life, Wine, Beer & Food

Vienna – summer party season in full swing


Most cities can keep you well entertained and active, but in Vienna the culture and leisure options are such that whatever time of year or whatever your preferences you’ll rarely find yourself with nothing to do.  This is a city which takes music, art, food
and drinks seriously. Here are a few of the events and activities taking place over the summer:

This weekend Vienna’s inner city is being transformed into a big open-air party

http://www.facebook.com/home.php?#!/event.php?eid=224299954251887

For a little wine with your DJ’s

http://www.wien.info/en/lifestyle-scene/wine-sound-sunset

Or the Museums Quarter’s summer long 10th birthday celebration

http://www.wien.info/en/lifestyle-scene/summer-mq

How about Europe’s largest free party, which takes place on the Danube Island

http://www.wien.info/en/lifestyle-scene/danube-island-festival

Alternatively there’s the Vienna Festival – showing 41 productions of contemporary stage art.

http://www.wien.info/en/music-stage-shows/vienna-festival

On the other hand there’s always the option of the beach bar

http://www.wien.info/en/lifestyle-scene/party-locations-summer

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Filed under Festivals, Museums Quarter, Music, Theatre, Vienna Life, Wine, Beer & Food

Showtime


It’s Thursday afternoon and after a quick lunch Helena and friend Leona will be spending the next few hours at Showtime. This is Vienna’s English Theatre’s ‘Youth Performing Arts School’ and another example of the two languages world in which we live here in the city. The schools bilingual teachers work with young people up to the age of 18 years teaching drama, dance and song. Helena enjoys the drama and dancing but claims not to be so keen on the singing. I suspect from the odd comment made that the singing issue has more to do with the ‘children’s’ music played in her class as she is never shy to sing the whole of the Mama Mia album and anything else deemed ‘cool’.

I asked the two girls what they like about Showtime and through big grins the responses were:

‘The acting and its fun to learn and play’ says Helena.

‘The dancing and its fun to learn and play’ says Leona.

So we have some clear consensus here and two future stars of theatre and dance – if they’re not do busy having fun.

http://www.showtime.co.at/index.html

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Filed under Schools, Theatre, Vienna Life