The Villa Wahnfried in Bayreuth

Saturday, 28 November 2015 - 01:00 pm (CET/MEZ) Berlin | Author/Destination:
Category/Kategorie: General, Museums, Exhibitions, Palaces, Castles, Manors, Parks

© Dickbauch~commonswiki/cc-by-sa-3.0

© Dickbauch~commonswiki/cc-by-sa-3.0

Wahnfried was the name given by Richard Wagner to his villa in Bayreuth. The name is a German compound of Wahn (delusion, madness) and Fried(e), (peace, freedom). According to Richard Wagner’s wife Cosima the name came to mind after visiting the picturesque town of Wahnfried in Hesse.

The house was constructed from 1872 to 1874 under Carl Wölfel’s supervision after plans from Berlin architect Wilhelm Neumann, the plans being altered according to some ideas of Wagner. The front of the house shows Wagner’s motto “Hier wo mein Wähnen Frieden fand – Wahnfried – sei dieses Haus von mir benannt.” (“Here where my delusions have found peace, let this place be named Wahnfried.“)

In 1894, Siegfried Wagner converted the eastern outbuilding in the manner of a small villa in Italian-like neo-Renaissance style for his own house, which was expanded by a low-rise building on the north side in 1932 by Hans Reissinger and was joined by a connecting wing on the southwest side of Wahnfried. After Siegfried Wagner’s death on 4 August 1930, it served his widow Winifred as a guest house for, among others, Arturo Toscanini (1931) and Richard Strauss (1933-34). In 1957 Winifred Wagner moved to Siegfried Wagner House and lived there until her death in 1980. Today, it houses the administrative offices of Richard Wagner Archives and Library.

Richard Wagner's Steinway grand piano © JosefLehmkuhl/cc-by-sa-3.0 Siegfriedhaus © Bayreuth2009/cc-by-3.0 © JosefLehmkuhl © Dickbauch~commonswiki/cc-by-sa-3.0 © Dickbauch~commonswiki/cc-by-sa-3.0
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Richard Wagner's Steinway grand piano © JosefLehmkuhl/cc-by-sa-3.0
The grave of Richard Wagner and his wife Cosima lies on the grounds of Wahnfried. The house has been a museum since 1976. Visitors can take a walk in the remote Hofgarten, the baroque park of Bayreuth’s New Castle, to where a path directly leads. From 2012, the museum was expanded and remodeled, reopened in July 2015 after a three-year closure. It includes the Villa Wahnfried, the Siegfried Wagner House and a new built building by the Berlin architect Volker Staab.

Read more on Richard Wagner Museum and Wikipedia Villa Wahnfried (Smart Traveler App by U.S. Department of State). Photos by Wikimedia Commons. If you have a suggestion, critique, review or comment to this blog entry, we are looking forward to receive your e-mail at comment@wingsch.net. Please name the headline of the blog post to which your e-mail refers to in the subject line.




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