Rothemburg ob der Tauber

Arrived in Rothemburg ab der Tauber on Sunday, 24 August. Sean insisted on carrying my suitcase on his back because he doesn’t like the noise of the wheels over the cobblestones. He got tired of carrying it and said it smells. We should get a new one and throw this one away.

We have trouble finding a place to stay but settled on another nice mid-range B&B.

We separated to meet back at the room at 6:00pm. Sean had my camera! I took my guidebook pages and took the self-guided walk but came back at 5:00 and napped. I was frustrated without my camera. Sean showed up at 6:00 so I went out and around again taking pictures. We were supposed to meet back up for an eight o’clock tour but I got lost. I did find a bag store. No one was at the church for the tour when I got there so I guess I missed it.

Sean was still asleep and I crashed too. Aaahhhh, twelve to thirteen hours sleep.

On Monday, we would split up again.
There are two things I love about Europe (at least where I have been in Europe), the earth-friendliness and the easy, quick, and painless public transportation. It doesn’t matter whether we’re going by train, bus, or cab. In Oklahoma, buying a train or bus ticket is almost as monumental as an international airline ticket. Plans must be made in advance. Here, we just look at the schedules posted at any stop, purchase a ticket from a machine or the driver, and get on. I love it!

25 August 2008

I got out before the town was up and going. I saw St. Jakob’s church and the Reichsstadtmuseum. I paid three euro extra for the privilege of taking any pictures I wanted of the exhibits. Any time museums let me take pictures, it’s a wonder.

I saw museum and church, Sean saw stores.pipe organ He shopped and wandered. We did laundry and wonder of wonders, after laundry, I actually found the bag store I had passed yesterday while lost, and another wonder, they had a suitable backpack. We shipped home two bags and some gifts.

We took the Night Watchman’s tour. He was funny. I bought the video. Can’t find it now though.
the night watchmanRothemburg street scene at nightnight street scene in Rothemburg

It was fun being out in the town at night. The day bus tourists had left but the stores were still open.

**notes added 20 February 2015

While Freiburg had an earth-friendly atmosphere, Rothemburg felt like a theme park. It is still set up much as it was in the fifteenth century.parking lot There are few cars and we rarely saw them driving. They have a parking lot outside the town walls. You can see the metal work where one of the old town gate used to be, along with the little door that the gatekeeper could open to see who wanted to enter the town after hours.Rothemburggatekeeperdoor I found the ugly face with a large hole for a mouth interesting. They would pour hot liquid out of it down on their enemies who were trying to force their way in.hotliquichole

St. Jakob’s (We call it St. James) church had some beautiful wood carving (click on the pictures to enlarge them, so you can enjoy the detail)

wood carved altar of the Virgin Mary
Altar of the Virgin Mary

woodcarving3

woodcarving1

and stonecarving.
God and small adult JesusJesus' Foot
Christmas Boat from Tanzania carved in ebony
Christmas Boat from Tanzania

ChristmasBoatdoc

Flying Fruit, too distracting OKC Ballet Romeo and Juliet

Romeo and Juliet in an embraceDear Robert Mills, Artistic Director of the Oklahoma City Ballet,

I know that if I am going to write reviews of local productions, I should probably try to go on opening night but this time I went to the final performance of Romeo and Juliet and wanted to say a few words about it.

Overall, it was an enjoyable afternoon. Juliet, danced by Miki Kawamura, was perfect. She had exactly the right amount of girlish shyness, excitement, and rebellion. On top of that, she was an excellent dancer. All the performers were good actors as well as dancers. The lovesick Romeo, Alvin Tovstogray, was great at general inattention to his surroundings, and Mercutio, Yui Sato, stole every scene in which he was a part. The best dramatized scene was where Juliet’s parents told her she was to marry Paris. Unbeknownst to them, she had already married Romeo. She rebelled, begged, pleaded. They shook her, threw her around in obviously abusive anger. At one point, her father dragged her upright by her hair. It looked authentic.

The sets and costumes were gorgeous and appropriate for the period. I particularly appreciated the costuming of stage hands as monks.

There are a few points that I would like to make Mr. Mills. Firstly, don’t have too much happening on the stage at one time. In the melee near the beginning, there is the gang fight, women throwing clothes in the air, and fruit flying from the wings across the stage. I found myself watching the flying fruit and missed much of the fight scene and dance. It was too distracting.

Secondly, I thought it odd that when the Lord and Lady Capulet introduced Juliet to the man they wanted her to marry, they brought the young man right into her bedchamber AND while she was still in her nightgown. I don’t think that was realistic in any age. I realize the number of sets and set changes must be minimized but that was glaring.

Thirdly, the “Montagues and Capulets” is a wonderfully grand piece of music. It needed some wonderfully grand choreography and dancing to accompany it. I also saw this trouble with the “Grand Pas de Deux” in Nutcracker. They are dramatic pieces and really need dramatic movement.

Finally, nowhere in the program is the music mentioned, neither the names of any of the pieces nor the composer. It should be. Even if the composer is dead, newbies need to know who the composer is and something about the music. Sergei Prokofiev does not care but had the composer been alive, you could have had a legal catastrophe.

In spite of those seeming imperfections, it was well worth the time. Thank you Oklahoma City Philharmonic, Mr. Levine, Oklahoma City Ballet dancers, choreographers, dance master, stage design, light design, crew, and Mr. Mills.

–Susan

http://okcballet.com/