Photo source: IMDB
On Friday evening we headed up to the Kirchberg plateau (the part of Luxembourg with all the European institutions and other big shiny buildings) for our first concert at the Luxembourg Philharmonie.
I’d bought us tickets to a live cinema concert, which happens just once a year here. Carl Davis, an American conductor and composer in his 70s, was conducting the Luxembourg philharmonic orchestra. According to the all-knowing wikipedia, he’s written soundtracks to over 100 films, but is best known for his soundtracks to silent films, including the two Charlie Chaplin films we saw on Friday: How to make movies, and City Lights (that one he “re-orchestrated” based on the original score).
City Lights is a great film. I’d seen clips of it in a film class I took at University but never the whole thing. It’s a silent film (of course) and in it, Charlie Chaplin plays a tramp who falls in love with a blind flower seller, and then befriends a billionaire who only remembers him when he’s completely sloshed. It makes for some hilarious scenes of course. It made us want to go and see The Artist too and see how the modern take compares with the originals…
It was our first time inside the Philharmonie and I was excited to see it. We’ve been past in the car or on the bus many times already as it sits just across the bridge at the entrance to the Kirchberg plateau. It’s a beautiful and interesting white round building with many modern columns around its façade.
Inside the architecture was fascinating too. The concert hall is in the centre, with a wide walkway around the outside to stand and sip your cremant before the start. And high walkways curving up and around the outside to get you to the balcony seats. It’s all white, and they have it lit up with neon pink and red lights which looked very stylish (and very now – neon seems to be the statement of the season).
I don’t have any photos of the hall itself unfortunately but I liked it too. It’s very different – black walls and dark wood panelling but still very modern with the box seats looking like mini wooden skyscrapers inside. The black walls behind them almost give the impression you’re outside rather than in a gleaming white oval.
We really enjoyed being there and the show was fantastic with a moment of excitement when the film seemed to literally melt mid-scene and the orchestra had to stop and wait for it to be reloaded a scene later. And tickets were surprisingly cheap: we paid just €15 each and were in the seventh row. So I’ll definitely be looking out for more interesting concerts to go back for…