Free Lunchkonzerts at Berlin’s Musical Temple
It’s often said, that the best secret is the one hidden in plain sight. If that's our clue, then Berlin's most accessible secret is the Berliner Philarmonie's Foyer. Often a must-see for anybody possessing a love for orchestra or a wannabe musician, the Foyer is part of the world-famous-Hans-Scharoun-designed music hall, which makes it a landmark both for architecture and acoustic design. Built to replace the previous gone-with-the-war location, it hosts the most famous Orchestra of Berlin, the Berliner Philarmoniker.
There is something that is frequently overlooked about the berlin Philarmonie’s Foyer, however: each and every Tuesday, at noon, you may experience a Lunchkonzert that is held in the foyer of the great sala itself. Attendance is completely free.
The public is as varied as is the orchestra hall, with its asymmetric design. The age of the attendees spans from the almost infants to the shaken elders, who are provided with the only seating made available. That's true; the lucky public sits on the floor right in front of the small orchestra, which usually consists of four to five instruments.
Bringing blankets to sit on is part of the very familiar atmosphere that Berlin, and Germany in general, has with its music. Food and beverages are consumed before and after the show, since both the bar and restaurant (and free garderobe!) are open. So as a personal suggestion, since the party gets quite crowded from time to time, be sure to get there early, let’s say 12:00, to secure a place in line. Be nice to people, as said public is rather a spectacle in itself, and you may catch some interesting pieces of conversation about music and what to listen for.
The program can encompass unsung classicals of Kammermusik, rinascimental music for piano, contemporary arrangements for viola and flute and more: the program is available on the website in English. The next concert is the 6th of October: a quartet playing Brahms’ string quartet nr.1 in C minor.
Are you new in Berlin? Would you like to experience a part of the real Berlin: youngsters, middles and elders together attending music played for free by great musicians; children that are almost silent the whole time; an almost paradisiacal atmosphere thanks to the variegated coloured windows and frames? Come get in line, get a free token and walk into our local music temple. And remember, even for the paid concerts, there is a large availability of cheap tickets; do not stop at the free concerts, there’s more out there.
By Guido Mori