Leipzig -- Germany's former culture capitol -- was a socialist and Nazi Party hotbed that historically experienced migration from Eastern Europe. It also was the first post-Reunification East German city to convene a bi-annual "Jewish Week" at which former Jewish residents driven out during the Third Reich are invited back with their descendants as City guests. Its Conservatory and Gewandhaus Orchestra (both founded by Felix Mendelssohn), Thomas-Church Boys Choir (founded by J.S. Bach) and University (founded 1409) draw visitors, students and faculty from around the world.
Two Pianos-Leipzig was sponsored by The Synagogue and Meeting Center Leipzig eV under direction of Gisela Kallenbach (former Member, EU Parliament and Saxony Bundestag) and fellow board members. The Center, located in former Jewish Hospital and Gestapo HQ Ariowitsch-Haus, serves as a hub for Jewish heritage through holiday celebrations, programming and community education.
In connection with the City of Leipzig's bi-annual Jewish week, 23-30 June 2019:
29 June: "The Two Pianos Back Story, with Music" -- Presentation, performances and exhibit featuring Two Pianos narrators and pianists describing how Two Pianos came to be, in the performance salon of legendary music publisher Edition Peters where Grieg, Mahler and other composers previewed their compositions. Anna and her friend Tanya Ury held Peters Scholarships as Conservatory students. In 2014 Peters moved its world headquarters back to this 19th-century building in Leipzig.
30 June: Two Pianos performance and exhibit at the Chamber Music Hall, Leipzig Conservatory, where Anna and her friends performed in student recitals and graduation examinations.
Gisela Kallenbach (Ariowitsch Haus) and Gabriele Goldfus (Director, Office for International Affairs, City of Leipzig) introduced both events. For a highlights video, click on the link at the top of this page.
The printed Leipzig program, dual-language program inserts, 32-page German-language color exhibit brochure, and professional videography were made possible by U.S. donations to The Two Pianos Project through Fractured Atlas, the Project's Fiscal Sponsor (2018-2023).