Friday, April 8, 2011

St. Marienkirche

Not far from the Fernsehturm (TV tower) is a lovely old church called St. Marienkirche.  Like many churches here, it was rebuilt after the war, but it was restored according to the original 13th century plan.  Just beyond it you can see the Berliner Dom, which will have its own blog entry.  
The side of the church was a line of arrows pointing at the sky.
 Detail on a wrought iron gate at the side of the church.
The vaulted ceiling was amazing.  Like in the Gethsemanekirche, the arches and pillars were all made of brick, but in this church they are painted white. 

Following the windows downward... The artwork behind the altar was also quite spectacular, the paintings on the backdrop surrounded by red marble columns and surmounted by statues.
 Detail of the carvings on the ends of the pews.  It reminded me somehow of a forest.
The best part of this church was that we just happened to arrive right before a free concert of the pipe organ.  The organ in St. Marienkirche dates back to the 18th century and is really beautiful.
We were so lucky to be there for this concert.  The organist was extremely talented, and rather than just "playing", she used the concert as an opportunity to educate people about this amazing instrument.  She explained how different parts of the organ worked and played a short demonstration of each part, and at the end played an original compostion showcasing the entire capability of the organ.  I had no idea it could make so many different types of sounds.  It was truly amazing.  I should also add that she had one of the most beautiful speaking voices I've had the pleasure to hear.

Here is a video of the music she was playing before the concert began, and I panned the video around the church so you will see some more details. 

Adding a smaller version of the video for faster viewing, with any luck.

Here is an audio file of the final piece in the concert.

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