September 16 The cruel, vicious and unwarranted attack on humanity that took place in New York and Washington on September 11 has, together with all tolerant, peace loving human beings, affected us deeply. Our last concert in Berlin on September 11 is an event that we will never forget. Musicians from 25 different countries have lived together with us in peace and joy for nearly 5 weeks. That is also something we will also never forget. To those family members, friends and loved ones from the USA and Canada who are still awaiting the return of their sons, daughters and friends... please don´t worry. They are safe with us until we can guarantee a problem free flight back to their respective countries. To those of you who were able to return immediately to your country of residence on September 12 - don´t forget those who are still here in Germany and don´t ever forget also the scenes of intolerance, hatred and crime against humanity that we all saw on September 11. We will update this page soon. Meanwhile thanks to you all who helped make this year such a success - please spread the word and come back next year (...after a break we´ll be working on the plans for 2002)!! Best wishes - Dieter Bernhardt, Nick Cohu, Tobias Ebel, Elisabeth Janku, Birgit Leppin, Holger Schneider, Susanne Timmer and Helmuth Rilling, Andreas Keller and all other members of the Internationale Bachakademie Stuttgart
We have also set up a guest book for your comments - please click on "guestbook" - and feel free to write about your time with us or anything you feel will be of interest to your fellow musicians.

September 9-11, 2001
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September 8, 2001
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Nick has been staying in Berlin with our friends from the USA and Canada for the time being. We hope that they will be able to return home soon. Until the final report from Nick we'll publish the photos of the last four days with concerts in Bonn (september 8) and Stuttgart (september 9) and a dramatic Requiem of Verdi in Berlin on Tuesday evening (last pictures: rehearsal).
September 4-7, 2001
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A mixed collection of photos reflecting some new sides of the Festival Choir and Orchestra. The brass pose outside the Liederhalle and then are reflected in a tuba, while Till lies on the floor and others have an evening drink in our bar at the Hospitalhof. The Canadians amongst us were invited out to a meal by Canada´s Honourary Consul here in Stuttgart (.....a quick word of praise to Canada....the only country worldwide to acknowledge the presence and work of their young musicians here with us this year....) and a "gemütlich" evening was had by all. A brief look at Thursday´s schedule gives you an idea of how a typical day happens here. Today was the final concert of the orchestra´s chamber music series.......the orchestra in varying groups and sizes perfomed a broad cross-range of music. The results were applauded loudly by an enthusiastic audience. Stuttgart audiences will now never be the same! Tomorrow we´re travelling off to Bonn for a performance of the Verdi Requiem - back in Stuttgart on Sunday for concert number 2, then off to Berlin on Monday for our final performance. We´ll take lots of photos and the next update will be on Friday 14 September with an additional special retrospect of the last 4 weeks. See you then!
September 1-3, 2001
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Three days have gone by since our last update and three hugely successful concerts have taken place. The first was on Saturday in Stuttgart, the second on Sunday in the 900 year old Cistercian Monastery of Kloster Eberbach as the closing concert of the Rheingau Music Festival and the third yesterday with chamber music works performed by members of the orchestra. It´s no exaggeration to say that all three were impressive. Standing ovations in Stuttgart and in Kloster Eberbach after our performances of the Messa per Rossini and a packed house in the Hospital Church to hear works ranging from Susato, Bach, Mozart and Bruckner. Despite the intensity of rehearsal schedules and performances there are always brief moments for relaxation as these photos show. Interestingly enough, such is the success of the Festival Choir and Orchestra that we´ve had to hire a bodyguard to keep the fans away......(see photo no.1)........check our our press reviews so far (only in German) by clicking on press info. If our bodyguard does his job and keeps us safe we´ll be back on Friday!!
August 29-31, 2001
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There has been unanimous praise for the work of Maria Guinand with the Festival Choir - sadly she´s now returned to Spain but not without having a great send off from all of us. Today was the first of three chamber music concerts performed by members of the Festival Orchestra. Mozart, Beethoven, Schubert and Dvorak was on the menu and the lunchtime concert was greeted warmly by a packed house. The choir rehearsed with Helmuth Rilling in the afternoon, as the photos show, and they are still rehearsing with full orchestra as I pen these lines. We´re warming up (in contrast to the weather which has turned cold and wet) for the first official performance of the Messa per Rossini in Stuttgart on Saturday.......a full report of this and our trip to Kloster Eberbach with our next update on Monday.
August 26-28, 2001
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Three days in one! We arrived in Stuttgart on Sunday and went almost without pause into the official presenation and welcome of the Festival Ensemble by the City of Stuttgart on the steps of the Neues Schloss. Outside there were brief speeches and musical extracts (..now and then hampered by the stiff breeze which blew the music away!). Then inside to the Weisser Saal for the official reception. Monday was an exceptional day for the choir - their only a-cappella concert. It was a tremendous success - the Stuttgart public rising to their feet in appreciation of truly amazing work achieved in such a short time. Bravos and cheers echoed around the hall. Helmuth Rilling was also truly impressed as the photo of him with members of the choir prove. On to Tuesday. Apart from the choir and orchestra´s daily rehearsal activities we have to deal with an avalanche of press conferences, radio and TV interviews, photographers and other media. It´s good for us but fitting this all into an already heavy schedule is sometimes difficult - here a photo of the "live" radio transmission at midday. The first lecture concert took place on Tuesday evening in the Beethoven Hall of the Liederhalle - more follow tonight and on Thursday before the Messa per Rossini is performed complete on Saturday. More smiling faces after the performance finish today´s report - next update on Friday 31 August and then again on Monday 3 September. They´ll be full of glorious photos of our concerts over the next couple of days!!

Sat August 25, 2001
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Today´s photos start from just after midnight when we celebrated Hollie´s birthday - just for once he´s got a good excuse for appearing so many times! Then at 9am, instruments and musicians were put onto buses for the short trip to Salem for the main rehearsal of the Messa per Rossini followed by our first public concert at 6pm with our first standing ovation!! Today is our last night in Überlingen - the buses for our 2 week stay in Stuttgart leave tomorrow (Sunday) at 10am. Sad faces all round to be leaving such a beautiful setting but also a sense of expectancy at the 15 public concerts ahead of us. We had a long dinner (with superb cooking prepared by the kitchen staff at Salem International College) and then danced, and talked, drank a glass (or two) of wine, then slowly walked back to pack the cases for tomorrow......
Fri August 24, 2001
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We start with portraits - first Bronnie, who not only has accompanied the voice coaches over the last 10 days but also is a vital part of our chamber music programme - then Danyelle our superb trumpet player from Australia, York from USA, Karl, two wonderful sopranos in Jessica and Caron from Canada, then later on Gisele (also from Canada) with her double bass..in all, a small selection from the 25 nationalities here with us. Hollie´s artistic musical talent is present in the close up of the viola and a typical (..sadly we´re getting used to it!!) night time view from our office closes tonight´s report. Tomorrow we´ve the first official concert of the Messa per Rossini. Today´s question - what was so interesting underground that Alex and Dominik get on their knees with forks and scissors...........? (Difficult one, this!)
Thu August 23, 2001
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The day starts with some of the empty bottles from the night before. Then the orchestra devoted the entire morning to chamber music - quintets, sextets, octets and larger groups playing from Bach up to Janacek. It was a pretty hot day and the lunchtime photos show how some passed the time - reading or taking a siesta. Up at Spetzgart and after the choir rehearsal finished, all choir members viewed a singing hand puppet show from their voice coaches and each got a puppet as a momento - the gesture went down well with all. Back at Härlen after supper, music making continued as the photos show and as I write (11pm) strains of Beethoven´s Wind & Piano Quintet reach my ears. The question is...when do they ever stop making music?
Wed August 22, 2001
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The grassy square outside the Aula is the main meeting point before, during and after rehearsals and this is where many of todays´ group photos were taken. It´s almost like a thoroughfare and everybody has to come by it several times a day. Here you´ll find a solitary bassoon making reeds, or regular double-bass transport, Birgit giving directions (?), birthday boy Rung Jou Liou, an ear massage and many more daily happenings - as always here´s just but a selection. Today´s question is "What is the last photo"?
Tue August 21, 2001
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A heavy day´s rehearsing today but everybody found a little bit of time to sit outside - even Helmuth Rilling held part of his conducting class out in the sun. Marc Destrubé grabs a few moments quiet with his wife whilst Alex and Dominik have a game of afternoon cards. Erik prefers to play his cello and Measha smiles for the camera - she´s enchanted us with her singing and her radiant smile. The wasps have fun - but what are Tobias, Nick and Hollie doing in the dead of night....?
Mon August 20, 2001
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Monday morning syndrome is Monday morning syndrome worldwide....after the glorious sunny day on Sunday we awoke to cloudy skies and a sharp drop in temperature. The only bright spot were peoples´ red faces from the sun yesterday. Rehearsals continued with the choir spending most of the day up at Spetzgart and the orchestra down at Härlen - Hollie sang too but found time to take some spontaneous "portrait" style photos.....plus a beautiful sunset, a corn field and two of our string professors doing imaginary sun-bathing....
Sun August 19, 2001
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guest comments by Tobias...Todays Menue: as an appetizer we proudly present: Erich The Cruel with sword and shield (folded, see left hand). Second: find out what happens if you don´t feed your double bass regularly (nothing to laugh about, Friedel!). Main dish: memories from a beautiful excursion on Lake Constance. After only one hour on the boat, scurvy starts to take its toll, people get very sleepy, some loose their teeth... but fortunately ther are still many of us enjoying ourselves on the lakeside, exercising sports like "extreme rose-smelling" (there is a picture of the two local champions). And see why there are no comments by Nick.....(he´s the one fast asleep).

Sat August 18, 2001
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A photo of Hollie caught off guard telephoning for a new digital camera opens tonight´s report.Our theme today is"hands" - how expressive they are and how the singers use them spontaneously. The photos were taken during the individual lessons each one receives. Getting the choir into the main hall with a new seating arrangement was a complicated business - hence the photos of our choir marching in one by one. Ofer and Anna write back home and Friedl tries to bargain for discount on his bottle of wine. Simba the dog seems unimpressed by it all.......
Fri August 17, 2001
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Odile celebrated her birthday today (the one with the sunflowers around her neck) and had lunch with Helmuth Rilling..(who knows what they talked about?..perhaps he sang "Happy Birthday" to her...). Rilling lead the student conductors class in the morning before we all took part in the "family photo" - Hollie sneekily took shots of the photographer precariously balanced on a wobbly ladder as she told us to say "cheeeese" and "concentrate into my isis"..!!. The storm didn´t arrive and there was only a spattering of rain but enough to bring out the umbrellas. A photo of Marc Destrubé patiently waiting at our office door and one of me with three super singers from the USA & Canada round off tonight´s offering. See you tomorrow.
Thu August 16, 2001
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Setting the scene are a couple of shots of the surroundings including a friendly cow. A birthday party and late night discussions took place after long rehearsals for the choir with Maria Guinand and Helmuth Rilling - the photos catch Maria in full rehearsal intensity.
Wed August 15, 2001
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A singer´s life isn´t only just about stretching the vocal chords as these photos prove.... vocal agility combined with physical dexterity(?).... voices, as with bodies, come in all shapes and sizes!.... have a good look! Look too at the aerial shots of the timpani. Later in the day we had the first general rehearsal with Helmuth Rilling with a complete run-through of the Messa per Rossini - check the photos closely - you´re sure to see someone you know! The weather is still fantastic and there´s a great photo of the evening view from the dining room. More tomorrow.......
Tue August 14, 2001
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Violins, brass & timpani are the theme of today´s photos - all taken in the modern "Härlen" buildings. As usual with the brass they are already making a lot of noise..so loud that Hollie, our webmaster couldn´t get his lunchtime siesta and had to take a nap on the front lawn...Tomorrow lots of pictures of the choir.
Mon August 13, 2001
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Official presentation and introduction of all participants by our Managing Director, Mr. Andreas Keller and then straight into the first masterclasses with the orchestra in the modern "Härlen" buildings and the choir a 15 minute walk away in Schloss Spetzgart. The good weather added to the atmosphere.....................
Sun August 12, 2001
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Arrivals day began early...VERY early at 3 in the morning!! A group of 14 young musicians from Romania arrived surprisingly cheerful after a 24 hour bus jorney. There was no let up as the next group of musicians from Poland arrived a couple of hours later at 5AM! Then they came singly, in pairs or in small groups via plane, train or car from all over the world and the last check-in took place shortly before midnight when we welcomed 6 musicians from Dallas. The other piece of good news - only 1 piece of luggage was lost! Here´s a visual overview of how the day developed - follow our daily news EVERY day for new, up-to-date photos!!
The daily comments for the news are NOT the responsibility of Hollie, our webmaster! This brief resumé is a personal, light-hearted (?), accurate (?), truthful (?) space written by Nick. All complaints & comments to him, please!!
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