Looking for something new and different to do in Germany this week? Check out our picks, from Gregorian chants to roller coasters, crazy quilts to a searching dance performance.
Heard any chant lately? It will be performed at the Zinna cloister
Listen to Gregorian chant in a candlelit church. The Archaica Men's Choir will perform Gregorian Chants for the Birth of Jesus on several dates around Christmas and New Year's in the Zinna Cloister in the state of Brandenburg. The ancient cloister will be lit by hundreds of candles for the occasion, and warm mulled wine will also be served. Not a bad idea, since the church won't be heated.
Phantasialand Theme Park in Bruehl
Ride a roller coaster, but keep your gloves on. It looks like theme parks aren't just for summer any more. The Phantasialand park, one of Europe's largest amusement parks, has once again opened its Wintertraum (Winter Dream) program. The opening hours are slightly reduced, as are the prices, but most rides are operating and the shows and lighted parades have been altered to reflect that holiday feeling. Open through Jan. 9, but closed on Dec. 24 and Jan. 1.
Cuddle up with a quilt, or just look at the ones hanging on the walls at the "Quilt Variations" show at the Amerika Haus in Munich. Highlighted are the decorative works of art quilters Edith Frank and Dorle Stern-Straeter, whose recent quilts replace typical materials with paper, wood and paints. Frank's painted wood quilts are influenced by Shaker and Amish styles, while Stern-Straeter tends towards technically difficult and optically challenging quilts that use both fabric and paper.
Grab the chance to see Sasha Waltz's two hit dance performances, "Körper" ("Body") and "noBody." Popular with audiences when they came out several years ago at Berlin's Schaubühne theater, they haven't been performed in the past two years. But they will be playing back to back this Christmas season. "Körper" is a reflection on the beauty and ugliness of the human form, on mortality and the dream of perfection. "noBody" takes on the ideas of mourning and pain, the ethereal and the physical.
Weimar Republic Dusk by George Grosz
Be moved by expressionism. That's the idea, isn't it? The Edwin Scharff Museum in the city of New Ulm (next door to its better-known neighbor, Ulm,) is showing some 80 works by German neo-expressionist painters such as Otto Dix, George Grosz and Max Pechstein. The paintings and sculptures are on loan from Berlin's National Gallery and are on exhibit through Jan. 9.