Music and literature
Whether it’s classical concerts in unique settings or headbanging to the best bands in the metal world – in Germany’s true north, there is something for all music lovers. In addition to musical highlights, exhibitions on well-known Nordic literary personalities offer interesting insights into their lives and works. Cultural diversity in Schleswig-Holstein that inspires.
The unique light and the vastness of the natural and cultural landscapes inspired painters such as Emil Nolde and Max Liebermann. Composers and writers found the leisure here to create world-class literature. Theodor Storm’s novella “Der Schimmelreiter” (The Rider on the White Horse) illustrates, like no other work, the life of the people on the North Sea coast in their struggle with the forces of nature – and still inspires its readers to this day.
The Schleswig-Holstein Music Festival is one of the largest classical music festivals in Europe. A colourful programme mix of concerts and culinary delights stretches across the entire country during the summer months. The art of music is also celebrated in Hamburg, Lower Saxony and in the south of Denmark as part of the Schleswig-Holstein Music Festival. Classical music is the main focus of the diverse performances on show, but other genres such as pop, jazz, theatre, electro, klezmer, comedy, readings and others can also be found in the programme. Well-known composers and musicians who normally perform in large concert halls demonstrate their talent in the most extraordinary venues the true north has to offer. Whether in a cowshed, a cosy church or on an impressive manor estate, the festive atmosphere delights visitors. Even for the very young, various music festivals and the children’s music workshop offer a fun and varied programme. Experience the Schleswig-Holstein Music Festival and enjoy the wonderful sounds during a picnic, for example.
Once a year, it’s that time again: When the sound of church bells and tractors in the district of Steinburg is drowned out by loud guitar riffs and celebratory bawling, the Wacken Open Air has started. Since 1990, one of the biggest metal festivals in the world has been celebrated here in the true north on an area spanning over 240 hectares. Around 85 000 people from all over the world take part in this spectacle and are thrilled by memorable concerts on more than eight stages. On the first weekend in August, friends of the heavy metal scene will be treated to all varieties of hard rock and metal. Many rock and metal legends, such as Ozzy Osbourne, Iron Maiden and Motörhead, have performed in the fantastic atmosphere of Nordic’s home of metal.
Since 1992, the Lübeck Academy of Music (Musikhochschule Lübeck) has dedicated an annual festival to the composer Johannes Brahms. Enjoy symphony and chamber music concerts, new music, club music and sound installations.
Günter Grass was a German writer, sculptor, painter and graphic artist. Grass achieved his literary breakthrough with his novel “The Tin Drum”. The winner of the Nobel Prize for Literature, who lived near Lübeck in his old age, was one of the most important German-language authors. The Günter Grass House in Lübeck is dedicated to his life and work.
Theodor Storm was a German novellist and lyricist who was born in Husum. With his poetry and prose, he is one of the most important representatives of poetic realism. One of his best-known works is the novella “Der Schimmelreiter”. The Storm Museum in Husum shows a permanent exhibition on the life and work of Theodor Storm, in addition to original living and working quarters.
Till Eulenspiegel is the protagonist of a Middle Low German folk book. He was one of the most famous German jesters and, according to the collection of stories, was always playing new tricks on his fellow men. According to the rhymed inscription in Middle Low German on a memorial stone from the middle of the 16th century, Till Eulenspiegel died in 1350 in Mölln (Duchy of Lauenburg), where the Eulenspiegel Museum is also located today.
Ernst Barlach was a German sculptor, medallist, writer and draughtsman. He was born in Wedel (Pinneberg). The Ernst Barlach Museums in Wedel and Ratzeburg display collections of sculptures, drawings, woodcuts, lithographs, letters and manuscripts by Ernst Barlach.
Thomas and Heinrich Mann were German writers born in Lübeck. Heinrich Mann wrote his main work in exile, the novels “The Youth of King Henri Quatre” and “The Completion of King Henri Quatre”. His brother, Thomas Mann, achieved fame with his first novel “Buddenbrooks”. A visit to the Buddenbrookhaus in Lübeck will take you into the world of the “Buddenbrooks” and the Mann family.
Friedrich Hebbel was a German playwright and lyricist. He was born in Wesselburen (Dithmarschen), where the Hebbel Museum is also located. It is dedicated to the life and work of the North German playwright. His major works include, for example, the tragedies “Agnes Bernauer” and “Maria Magdalena”.
Klaus Groth was a Low German lyricist and writer. He was born in Heide (Dithmarschen), where the Klaus Groth Museum is also located. The museum is the house where the poet was born and tells of his life and work. His works include, for example, the poetry collection “Quickborn” or the story collection “Vertelln”.