Bonn City Museum

Postal address:
Büro StadtMuseum Bonn
Stadt Bonn, Amt 41-5
53103 Bonn

Telephone: 0049 (0) 228 / 77 20 94

The museum has a special room on the history of music in Bonn [located in the exhibition area at Franziskanerstraße 9] where it displays detailed information on the beginnings of the Electoral Court Orchestra in Bonn up to its peak in the late 18th century under Cologne Elector Maximilian Franz, a descendant of the Habsburg Imperial House, but also on a number of musicians of the 19th and 20th centuries with a Bonn connection in their biography or through their works. Apart from Ludwig van Beethoven, born in Bonn (but deceased in Vienna), there is hardly any other composer with a more significant connection than Robert Schumann who died in Bonn in 1856 and was buried in the Old Cemetery, next to his wife Clara, although she outlived him by 40 years. Robert Schumann, who as a music commentator had already given a decisive impetus towards erecting a Beethoven monument in Bonn, went to Bonn for the first time on 15th May 1851, where his first way led him to the Beethoven monument directly.

The museum also owns a few exhibits with a Schumann connection (which it lent, inter alia, for the Schumann rooms at the Schumann House in Bonn), has devoted itself to Robert and Clara Schumann not only with a permanent exhibition, opened in 1998, but also with a series of special exhibitions held since 1993 at Ernst Moritz Arndt House, an annex to the Municipal Museum, showing, amongst other things, “Robert Schumann and the Poets”, “Album for the Young”, “Clara and Robert Schumann. Contemporary Portraits”, “Clara Schumann” (1996), Schumann as a Rhine Romantic in “To the Rhine, to the Rhine” (2002), “Between Poetry and Music. The Early and the Late Robert Schumann” (2006), “Robert Schumann – Stations in Life, Places of Residence and Travel Destinations” (2010), and with a variety of regular events (lectures, concerts, play readings, film screenings, and many more).

The Bonn City Museum press, along with printing catalogues for the above exhibitions, has also been in charge of producing a number of other Schumann publications, such as Dichtergarten für Musik [Poets’ garden for music] and "Die Ehetagebücher der Schumanns [The Schumanns’ marriage diaries]", as well as "Unterwegs mit Schumann. Ein Reiseführer für Musikfreunde. [On the way with Schumann. A travel guide for music lovers.]" (2010).

From 2005 until May 2021 the office of the Museum has also been the head office of the Schumann Network of which the Museum Director Ingrid Bodsch (as Museum director retired since May 2021) was appointed as Project Manager.

(Ingrid Bodsch)

A look at exhibition room “History of Music in Bonn” in the museum building atFranziskanerstraße
[Fig. 1]

A look at exhibition room “History of Music in Bonn” in the museum building at Franziskanerstraße

Anniversary exhibition
[Fig. 2]

Anniversary exhibition “Clara Schumann 1819-1896”, a look at the room in the Ernst-Moritz-Arndt-House with a grand piano by Grotrian-Helffrich-Schulz, No. 1295, produced as a gift for Clara Schumann in 1871. In 1996, the grand piano was owned by a Belgian private collector.

A look at anniversary exhibition
[Fig. 3]

A look at anniversary exhibition “Clara Schumann 1819-1896” at the Ernst Moritz Arndt House, 1996

A look at anniversary exhibition
[Fig. 4]

A look at anniversary exhibition “Clara Schumann 1819-1896” at the Ernst Moritz Arndt House, 1996

Robert Schumann and the Muses
[Fig. 5]

Robert Schumann and the Muses, lithograph (collection of postcards)

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