Mirror of Zen Blog

Was He There Then?

A precious snippet of film documenting a tram ride through Vienna in the days that Mahler walked there, in 1906, on the streets that he walked, in the very neighborhood where he worked — it literally begins with the building where he was working — the Wiener Hofoper, the Vienna Court Opera, now the Vienna State Opera — in the very days he would have been working there. In the very hours of his being in the building. (Glad there is no day and month on this film — I am just the kind of person who would run back to Henry-Louis de la Grange’s epic four-volume biography of him to check if he was traveling somewhere out of Vienna that day, or not, since that biography provides almost a month-to-month, even week-to-week record of Mahler’s performance and travel activities.)

But it doesn’t matter anyway. Watching this is crack enough!

Chills, chills, without end.

1906 - Tram Ride Through Vienna, Austria (speed corrected w/ added sound)

[ 1st scene: Vienna Opera, southern part of the Ringstraßen Boulevard

2nd scene: It could be Schwarzenbergplatz, which is east of the Opera.

3rd scene: Praterstern, with the Admiral Tegetthoff memorial in the middle. It’s a busy traffic center now. The building on the right corner is the Rotunde, which was built for the 1873 world fair. It burned down sometime in the 1930s and kept mostly empty until 2015. Now there is the campus of the Vienna University of Economics and Busines.

4th scene: western side of the Ringstraßen boulevard. The building filmed on the right is the Burgtheater.

5th scene: I don’t know where this is, I can only guess. From the style of building it could be Karlsplatz, which is also at the southern end of Ringstraße, from the very green surroundings it could be the Prater Park, which always has been a
terminal stop. ]— from YouTube comments

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