Orlando Figes

Reading and talk: The author of The Europeans in conversation

It was a menage-à-trois between singer Pauline Viardot-García, her husband Paul Viardot, and Russian writer Ivan Turgenev. And it took place for the most part in Baden-Baden, which served as a starting point for many trips undertaken by the three of them. Renowned British historian Orlando Figes (who has held a German passport since Brexit) used this intimate connection as an opportunity to talk about the emergence of modern Europe – via the examples of railways, train station kiosks, and cultural tourism. Did you know, for instance, that opera schedules adapted to the development of railroads? We believe this is a perfect introduction to a Baden-Baden festival entitled "La Grande Gare," which invites you to set out on imaginary musical journeys. Figes’ book, a panorama that illuminates the impact of painting, music, and literature, serves as the occasion for a conversation about Europe between the writer, conductor Thomas Hengelbrock, and artistic director of the Festspielhaus Benedikt Stampa – further guests are also expected.

In English with translation service.


Orlando Figes
Benedikt Stampa


Orangerie in Brenners Park-Hotel & Spa

The Orangerie forms part of a world-renowned grand hotel: with a history spanning more than 150 years, Brenners Park Hotel & Spa sits in a splendid location on Baden-Baden's Lichtentaler Allee. As the heart of the event space, the Orangerie impresses with its high arched windows providing a view of the avenue. Experiencing music in an intimate setting has always been a tradition at Brenners.

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Sponsored by the Baden-Württemberg Foundation