Thursday, October 20, 2016

Danube Reflection - Grein, Austria

WELCOME TO GREIN, AUSTRIA! A small village of about 2,900 people on the Danube River. Grein roughly translates into "shriek" or "scream" in old German. The Danube use to be very treacherous here and the city was named after shipwrecked sailors yelling and their widow's cries. 

Stadttheater Grein. Notice the three dates on the building. 1468 was the year it was constructed as a granery. 1563 is when it became a rathhaus (city hall). 1791 is when it installed a theater. Emperor Josef II encouraged the construction of theaters so the proceeds could be used to fund poor houses. A cause that was really supported by citizens after a major flood. 

Inside Stadttheater Grein, the oldest theater in Austria. Lots of funny and interesting facts about this theater. The first couple of rows had an early form of season ticket holders. To guarantee your seat, you were given a key. When you weren't at the show, you'd fold your seat to the back and lock it so there was no place for a person to sit. 

Shows use to be very, very long. So, there's a small bathroom located stage right for the audience. The only barrier was a small curtain. This meant if an exciting, funny, or climatic scene was about to happen you could peek out the curtain and not miss a thing. "It didn't smell nice near the bathroom, so these seats were cheaper..."

This building also had a small jail that was located stage left. To keep the prisoners entertained, they gnawed a hole in the wall so they could watch from their cell. The audience was very kind to the prisoners bringing them food and drinks during the show. A somewhat selfish gesture though because this was to prevent them from yelling and disrupting the show.

I think this is my favorite theater.

St. Giles Church - Saint Giles was a hermit living in the woods of Septimania and Provence. He foraged for food and drank the milk from a deer. Because of this, St. Giles is the patron saint of lactating mothers.

Looking toward the Danube from Böhmergasse

View of the Wachau Valley from the Grein cemetery.

View of the Danube from the grounds of Schloss Greinburg

View of old town with mist rising of the mountains in the background.


And yes, Marianne is to the far left dancing with her tiny hands... YEAH!!!

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