I had read in a newspaper that one could go inside even without having a ticket. So this was the first thing to do on my first day in Minneapolis.
Greeted at the entrance by a huge photograph of a nice, good-looking man (he looked like Freud but I knew it was not him) I entered the building. Due to morning hours perhaps, there were practically no people in it.
A very nice man (a real one this time) at the desk in the entrance hall smiled at me. After my “hello” he asked, “Are you Scandinavian?” –- “No, from Austria.” He told me that he had already retired from his job, but wanted to do something and as he loved theatre in general, this was the right place for him to work now.
So I got a very personal introduction to the Theatre. About the French architect and the very special things about it. ”You know, it is haunted and there are ghosts, it is mysterious – as theatre is.” He had a twinkle in his eyes and a smile on his face, but there was something serious about it as well, so, “Really?” was all I answered. “You know – and the color of the building, this dark blue. It is supposed to be the special period between daylight and darkness. There is a word for that, not here, but you guys over there have it. Everybody from over there knows it.” I was not quite sure what he meant, but Schumann’s “Zwielicht” crossed my mind, which would have all the mysteries, darkness and anxiety in it he had talked about.
“You want to see something really great? Switch elevators on the 4th floor and go right to the top of the building”.
Now he had made me curious and so I left. Probably I could have read all this somewhere, but getting this kind of personal introduction made it very special.
It was one of the most astonishing and wonderful buildings in which I had ever been. Magical – yes. The photos hopefully tell it.
And the “Guggenheim Museum” in New York also crossed my mind. Which is so different, the visitors becoming part of the architecture there. What a difference.
Here I had practically the entire building for myself only. What a luxury.
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