Fish and Chips

There were certainly a lot of beautiful smiling faces at Fish and Chips last Saturday.
Jimsession were just fabulous and many of you wished to buy cds. Soon their manager told me.
Many thanks to our sponsors who gave us some fabulous prizes: Baccalà, NRW-
Forum, Takagi and Werner Hoffrichter who took us into Burn's Night with his spectacular bagpipes!

Special thanks to Tonino who managed to produce 150 portions of excellent
fish and chips. WoW!
To Nicola and Dinesh, a big hug and a thousand thanks who commnicated our event to all of NRW, and to André who will magic another wonderful movie for us and to Mark who took care of the door so brilliantly. What would RhineBuzz do without you all!

We look forward to salsaing with with our friend George who won the four week course on our up and coming RhineBuzz Salsa Nights.

And of course a heartfelt thank you to all for coming. Often I am asked how you can help RhineBuzz - just tell everyone what you tell me - that you had a great time. It's as simple as that!

Thanks also to Catherine Sparks for many of the superb photos.

Per Kirkeby and Caspar Wolf at kunst palast

26.09.09 - 10.01.2010

museum kunst palast

Per Kirkeby, Beat Wismer and Kay Heymer

Caspar Wolf Landscape 1771 - 1774
all photographs ©Bernd Ahrens

The exhibitions Per Kirkeby and Caspar Wolf opened at the museum kunst palast on Friday evening with a concert by Mike Westbrook and Kate Westbrook.
The Per Kirkeby exhibition is a collaboration with Tate Moden London and I was fortunate to speak to the director of the Tate Modern, Vincente Todoli, at Thursday's press conference. I asked him why they has chosen the kunst palast to join forces with and he told me that they had been in talks with the kunst palast on several occasions, Dusseldorf is right he said and this museum with it's airey exhibition space is superb to show Kirkeby's monumental works. He was pleased that the show could now be extended for Dusseldorf. I glimpsed at the show in London recently where the exhibition space was slightly more modest than here and indeed here in Düsseldorf it takes on a very different feeling.

Beat Wismer and Per Kirkeby
Kirkeby studied as a geologist so the idea to show his work alongside the Swiss pre-romantic painter Caspar Wolf was a master stroke by the kunst palast's director Beat Wismer. Both artists were/are fascinated by mountains and rock formations and although their interpretations are very different the similarities are also very strong.
These two artists, that lived and worked 200 years apart, are deeply connected, do go along to the show and discover this exhibition for yourselves. It's a beautiful, intriguing and historically a very informative show.

Speaking with Vincenti Todoli (Tate Modern) and Kay Heymer and below Beat Wismer (museum kunst palast)

The Schumann Quartett

RhineBuzz tickets sold out - you can still buy tickets from the venue
In October I spent a wonderful afternooon in the company of the young Schumann Quartett in The Robert Schumann Hall of the museum kunst palast.
These four musicians range in age from just 21 to 28. Their youth and uncomplicated nature filled the stage which we were invited to share with them. We were treated to two pieces which were light and totally enchanting so that we, the journalists and photographers, were quite simply hungering for more when they finished playing for us. I eagerly await their first full performance in the Hall on Sunday 25th October. The quartet then went on to giving us a real insight on the life of a young musical family of this incredible standard.
The Schumann Quartet comprise of the half German-Romanian, half Japanese Schumann siblings Erik, 1st violin, Ken, 2nd violin, Mark, 'cello and the charming Japanese Ayoko Goto, viola.
The Schumann's father is a member of the Düsseldorf Symphony Orchestra and as they talked about how the quartet came about it was easy and fascinating to observe how this family worked together. The respect and harmony they shared, quite simply beguiling. A family that makes you think once again I wish I could play an instrument ...
All study or have studied at the Cologne Academy of Music and already have a wealth of experience behind them. Erik, the oldest brother is an established soloist of world-wide reputation who has been provided with a violin of Stradivarius from around 1722.

After the press conference I asked Erik, the older brother, how his English was. OK he modestly repiled. His friend next to him assured me it was more than ok, so I asked him if he could speak a few words especially for the RhineBuzz community. He willingly said yes as I explained to him who you all are and what RhineBuzz is.
We will meet Erik Schumann before the concert at 3.20pm. After our talk with him we can either visit the museum or spend time in the cafe until the concert begins at 5pm.

RhineBuzz at the Robert Schumann Hall will happen on Sunday January 31st.

The Robert Schumann Hall is in the basement of the museum kunst palast which is at the end and to the right of the Ehrenhof where the NRW-Forum also is.
The concerts will be unusual in that the young quartet will introduce the pieces that they play themselves and will offer anecdotes and brief demonstrations on the different styles of what they play. It will, without a doubt, bring chamber music closer to those that wish to know more in a casual and lighthearted way.
I am really looking forward to January 31st 2010.

It goes without saying that would be superb if we could bring as many of the international community to this international quartet and I know that we will be witnessing a concert of extraordinary magic and the beginning of fabulous careers for these gifted young people.

If you would like to join us please send an email to or you can buy your tickets directly from the box office at the Tonhalle. Excellent seats (€18) have been reserved for Caroline West until 24th January.

Erstklassik! 31st January 2010

Joseph Haydn
“Lerchenquartett“ D-Dur op. 64 Nr. 5
Robert Schumann
Streichquartett a-Moll op. 41 Nr. 1
Astor Piazzolla
Tango Ballet
Heitor Villa-Lobos
Streichquartett Nr. 17
Astor Piazzolla
Four, for Tango

Tickets €12/15/18

The Opera on the Rhine

b.02 Kunst der Fuge Rhine Ballet

It's been a very eventful few days at the Opera on the Rhine for RhineBuzz.
We have seen the children's opera Robin Hood, a colourful and enchanting

introduction to the opera for the younger ones. The audience at the premier in Duisburg were yelling for more when the final curtain fell.
On Thursday a group of us saw The Tales of Hoffmann by Offenbach at the Opera House in Düsseldorf. I think we were all a little intrigued to see how we would fare through this marathon piece but all were surprised at how much we really enjoyed the beautiful, tuneful and sometimes amusing performance.
Also included in our group last week were a couple visiting from the States, regular opera goers to the Met in New York. Regular visitors to our city they were charmed, and I think quite surprised, at what Düsseldorf has to offer and are keen to return on their next visit! Can't get a better recommendation than that!
On Sunday I also saw the ballet b.o2 Kunst der Fuge in Duisburg. Another enormously physical piece by Martin Schläpfer. It is simply awe inspiring to enjoy the strength of his dancers and allow them to take you off into another world.
You can purchase all tickets for the Oper and Ballet here. The information in English is on it's way the Opera House tells me. There is also an excellent ticket and information shop next to the Opera House on the Heinrich-Heinrich-Allee 24.

I receive a whole number of delightful messages about our opera events - here are just a few:

"Thanks Caroline for an awesome (as always perfectly organized) evening on Thursday. I really didn’t expect it would be so good! Looking forward to future events."

"Another well organised enjoyable RhineBuzz event. Thanks Caroline.
The ballet was not the top of my things to do but the consistently high standard of events made me attend with anticipation. Once again an eclectic mix of people who all seem friendly and open, and superb coreography by Caroline and the dancers on stage.
Somehow the expats Thursday drinking club in Koln does not seem as exciting as it used to be. Standing in a circle with one had in my pocket and a pint of lager in the other discussing the differences between Heinz baked beans in Germany and good old Albion is fine but its nice to to have a variety of cultural choices.
Its beans and caviar on toast from now on."

"Thank you SO much for organising the latest event, the opera. Hoffmann was marvelous!!! I am glad I went!"

Tales of Hoffmann

Come and join us for on March 4th for Louise by Gustave Charpentier. Send an email to for details.
The partnership with the Opera on the Rhine has worked out very well for all of us. We receive the best seats in the house at special prices for the RhineBuzz community and are pleased to have opera events coming up regularly until June 2010. It's great that RhineBuzz is opening doors, so many of us are unfamiliar with the opera, but those who are now joining
our trips are enjoying the opera and ballet enormously and telling me they would never have gone had it not been for our events.
We look forward to you joining us sometime.