My 2013 resolutions part 1 – Wuppertal

Now that the year is still all sparkling and new, it’s the perfect occasion to present a list of buildings/sites/bridges I’m looking forward to visit in 2013. Here goes!

First I’m headed for Wuppertal, the city of Pina Bausch. Wuppertal is an industrial city in North Rhine-Westphalia, Germany. The Wupper streams through the valley where the city is built in.

This is my top 10 list for Wuppertal:

The main reason why I want to visit Wuppertal is to catch a performance of Tanztheater Wuppertal in it’s home town and of course to ride the Schwebebahn!

Pina Bausch created almost all of her works in the Wuppertal Opera House. The Opera House was closed for renovation at the end of 2003 until 2009. During that period Tanztheater Wuppertal, Pina Bausch her company, played at the Schauspielhaus. This latter building is now also threatened with closure  due to bad economic management of the city of Wuppertal. Since Tanztheater Wuppertal has promised to perform Pina Bausch her pieces until this season (2012/13) I don’t have to wait another year to see Kontakthof being performed at the stage where it premiered in 1978.

But dance is not all Wuppertal has to offer. There you can ride the Schwebebahn, the ultimate ride through a city. It’s a monorail with a train that flies above the city and most of the time above the Wupper, the stream that flows through Wuppertal. A friend of mine spent a day riding the Schwebebahn visiting its various stations. The entire trip only takes about 30 minutes, but when you count 20 stations, you have a schedule for a day. And no, my friend wasn’t Tuffi the elephant who also wanted to have a ride along the Schwebebahn, but along the way decided that she preferred to have solid ground beneath her feet:


Along the way I would like to stop and visit the Wuppertal Zoo. The entrance building of the Zoo is a lovely building and the Zoo is worth a visit because of the particular landscape. Wuppertal is a town situated entirely in a valley, so I’d better pack some walking shoes. The Wuppertal Zoo isn’t the only park worth a visit: Skulpturenpark Waldfrieden, the art garden by Tony Cragg is also on my list. Especially since it’s great hall was featured in Pina, the movie by Wim Wenders. Another building where a dance scene was filmed was the Schwimmoper, also referred to as the flying opera house.

In 2012 one of the bridges in Wuppertal was transformed to a LEGO bridge. Although the LEGO bricks are only an optical illusion, I still find it a pretty cool project by Martin Heuwold. And yes, I found some contemporary architecture: the E/D/E Headquarters building is a pretty nice example.

The Zeche Zollverein, is a landmark in the neighborhood of Wuppertal. It’s a coal mine that is protected as world heritage in Essen, where Pina Bausch was born. The building of the Zollverein Design School near the coalmine by SANAA-architects, also looks very interesting.

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