Walking Music Tour
Our team from MyDestination Vienna has come up with a Music Walking Tour through Vienna - for you to be able to trace the footsteps of Vienna's great composers...there are so many of them, not only Austrians, but from all over the world! Check our "Composer's section" for more detailed information on the most famous artists who lived in Vienna.
This tour will take you approx 3 hours - it is well worth a try, you will not only see Vienna's "musical side", but also be able to enjoy the most important partsof historical Vienna and its TOP ATTRACTIONS.
Start at the St. Stephan's Cathedral. This landmark of Vienna is also a major sight to whatever concerns Vienna and its music. This is the place where many famous composers introduced or performed their works. Here Joseph Haydn sang as a choirboy when he moved to Vienna at the age of 8. Haydn also got married here like so many of his peers, i.e. Franz Schubert, Johann Strauss Jr (the Waltz King) or W.A. Mozart (his children were also baptised in this stunning cathedral).
Not far from St. Stephan's Cathedral, just turn into the Singerstrasse, you can find the socalled Deutschordenshaus (House and Church of the Teutonic Order), a very charming little church. This is where Mozart lived for a short while, still being very young, and he decided there and then that Vienna would be the place to move to in order to continue his career. He decided to work as a freelancer, rather than being employed. This worked out well in the beginning, but in later years he began experiencing financial troubles that he could not rid himself from till his very early death. Also Johannes Brahms lived here for 2 years during his stay in Vienna. Have a look through one of the windows in the courtyard, you will be able to see the inside of a pretty 18th century theatre - this is where the Mozart Ensemble Vienna today performs works of mainly Mozart.
Continue to the Domgasse to visit the Mozart Haus (House of Mozart). This house is the only apartment house (of the many he lived in) that has survived until today. Mozart lived here on the 1st floor, quite luxuriously occupying 6 rooms, for a total of 3 years - this time was considered his happiest time in Vienna. Business was very good and he composed, among many other works, the famous opera "Figaros Hochzeit" during his stay here. Being very successful at that time, we today know that many parties and events took place in this very house, with frequent visits of other great composers like Haydn and Beethoven, close friends of Mozart at that time.
The Mozart House is a 6 floor building entirely dedicated to Mozart's works. It is an extremely interesting and very worthwhile visit. Check here for further info.
Continue to the Dr. Ignaz Seipl Platz and visit the Jesuit Church (Universitätskirche). This venue is very popular for music lovers as every Sunday (September till June) at 10.30am you will be able to listen to sacred music composed by our great composers as Mozart, Schubert or Haydn.
Right opposite you will see the Academic Gymnasium building - be aware it is not open to the public. It was here that Franz Schubert received his education as a court chorister. The famous Antonio Salieri (Mozart's biggest adversary) was responsible to discover the exceptional talent of Schubert and recommended and guaranteed him a place in this school - admission was extremely difficult at that time. Salieri was so convinced of Schuberts great talent that he gave him music lessons for free for many years.
Right next to the Academy is the impressive Academy of Sciences - this building is open to visitors Monday through Friday from 8am to 5pm. In this very building Joseph Haydn attended his own composition "Creation" on his 76th birthday - at the same time it was his last public appearance to the Viennese audience. The Academy of Science houses a Haydn memorial room here. But not only Haydn triumphed here, also Beethoven staged and conducted himself his Symphony No 7, as well as his symphonic work "Wellingtons Victory" here - at that time already being so deaf that he could not hear the enthusiastic clapping of the audience.
Continue along the fabulous Ringroad (either by foot or public transport, tram nr. 2) to one of the most beautiful parks in Vienna, the Stadtpark. Look for memorials of Anton Bruckner, Robert Stolz (another operetta genius), Franz Schubert, as well as one of the world’s most photographed monuments: the Johann Strauss Golden Statue. The Waltz King, as he is being called in Vienna, is shown with his violin poised, ready to play. We suggest you also take a peek at the beautifully renovated Vienna Kursalon (just renovated and it is possible to go inside) - here Strauss performed many life concerts with his works of waltz - very much to the liking of the Viennese. On warm summernights there is a live orchestra playing and one can dance to the wonderful melodies.
Continue to the street called Seilerstätte till you reach the "House of Music". Over four floors you will be confronted with everything that has to do with music. It does not only exhibit personal belongings of Vienna's great composers like Haydn, Beethoven, Schubert, Strauss, Mahler, Schoenberg and Wolfgang Amadeus Mozart, but it lets you interactively experience "music" - what is a tone, where does the sound come from, and how can we hear and listen? It is a fascinating and very worthwhile visit into this world - especially also for children (check our children section for further information). One of the highlights at the end of the tour is the opportunity for each visitor to conduct the Vienna Philharmonic Orchestra (using modern technology, of course).
Continue down the impressive Ringroad till you reach the Musikverein, one of the worlds most famous concert halls - who has not heard about the global broadcast of the Viennese New Year's Day Concert performing in Golden Hall of the Musikverein? It is also the home of the world famous Vienna Philharmonic Orchestra.
Just keep walking untill you reach the famous Vienna State Opera - another place of great history whatever concerns Viennese composers. Check out the State Opera Museum here, if you love opera, you will get really enthusiastic! You will be able to see costumes, photographs, stage design models, play bills and opera documents from the last 50 years of Vienna's State Opera - a real treat!
Keep going till you reach the Lobkowitz square and its impressive Lobkowitz palais. It is one of Vienna's most impressive palaces and today hosts a unique museum that theater fans will love! The Lobkowitz are an aristocratic family, that has been patrons of musicians for centuries, and still continue to do so today. One of the most famous musicians that was financed by this family was the German composer Christoph Willibald Gluck. Gluck moved to Vienna to make career, and, with the help of Lobkowitz, was so successful that the Empress Maria Theresia appointed the composer to teach most of her 16 children in music.
Also, Beethoven conducted his Eroica symphony from here, this room is still called the Eroica Room. Lobkowitz was such a big fan of Beethoven that he granted him a life-long allowance under the condition that he would stay in Vienna - Beethoven accepted of course!
The last point of interest on our music tour is the Michaelerkirche (St. Michael's Church). The 17-year old Joseph Haydn used to play the organ of this beautiful church to the parish - he did not live far from here.
But more importantly - this is the place where Mozart's Requiem was performed for the first time right after his death. You will find 2 reliefs right at the entrance of the church (to your right) with commemorative texts.
Another highlight is found under the Arch of St. Michael - the grand "back entrance" to the Imperial Hofburg Palace. To the left of the arch you will find a memorial plaque that states the location of the Vienna national theater in the mid of the 18th century - it was then used as an opera house and a concert hall. Here several operas premiered, i.e. Gluck’s "Orpheus and Eurydice" and Mozart’s operas "The Abduction from the Seraglio", "The Marriage of Figaro" and "Così fan tutte". Haydn’s "Emperor’s Hymn" was also first heard in this theatre building - and was a huge success!
Lst but not least - in the Schweizerhof (inner courtyard of the Imperial Palace) you will find the Hofkapelle (Court Chapel). This is where you can listen to the Viennese Boys Choir (check our insider tips section) as part of a religious service from September till June. For further information please check their website.
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