Friday, September 20, 2013

Incantato Welcomes You to the City of Haydn: Eisenstadt

Eisenstadt is the capital of Burgenland, the smallest of Austria's nine provinces. It is the former residence of the Esterhazy princes and home to their residence, the Esterhazy Palace, which is the city's major attraction. Officially labeled as the City of Haydn, the famous Austrian composer Joseph Haydn spent much of his career as a court musician for the wealthy Esterhazy family and lived and worked as Prince Esterhazy's Kapellmeister (music director) in Eisenstadt for over 40 years. Many of his works were composed and premiered in Eisenstadt and Esterhazy Palace. When Haydn was promoted conductor in 1766, he bought a house in Eisenstadt and lived there with his wife until 1778. The house can still be viewed today, along with some original artifacts from Haydn's time. Today, the composer's white marble tomb can be seen in the Bergkirche, Haydn Church, also in Eisenstadt. 

Esterhazy Palace in Eisenstadt is a stunning baroque palace and presents a fascinating view of the life of splendor once lived at the court of the Princes Esterhazy. Built in the 13th century, the palace was continually rebuilt and extended over the years. It came into the hands of the Esterhazy family in 1649 was the main residence for the family for 300 years. It was initially restored and remodeled in Baroque between 1663 and 1672. This reconstruction resulted in a largely new building and gave the palace the appearance still seen today in the courtyard and main facade. The Haydnsaal was originally a large multi-purpose festival and banquet room. Today, it and the palace are still a hub for cultural events, festivals and concerts regularly organized here.

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