Friday, July 24, 2009

Tivoli Gardens, A Real Life Fairyland!

Does entering Coney Island's Luna Park or Dreamland sound exciting, or basking under dozens and dozens of fairy lights sound enchanting, what about watching a pantomime and ballerina at the Pantomime Theatre or sailing in one of the mythical creature boats at Dragon Park Lake, whirling around under a glass house, eating a scrumptious Danish dessert followed by coffee or expresso at an outdoor cafe. Are you intriqued yet?, Does this place really exist? The answer is YES!, This place is called: Tivoli Gardens, located in Copenhagen, Denmark.

Tivoli (in English also called Tivoli Gardens) is a famous amusement park and pleasure garden in Copenhagen, Denmark. The park opened on August 15, 1843 and, except for Dyrehavsbakken in nearby Klampenborg, it is the oldest amusement park in the world.

The amusement park was first called "Tivoli & Vauxhall"; "Tivoli" alluding to the Jardin de Tivoli in Paris (which in its turn had been named from Tivoli near Rome), and "Vauxhall" alluding to the Vauxhall Gardens in London.

Tivoli's founder, Georg Carstensen (b. 1812 - d. 1857) obtained a five-year charter to create Tivoli by telling King Christian VIII that "when the people are amusing themselves, they do not think about politics". The monarch granted Carstensen use of roughly 15 acres (61,000 m²) of the fortified glacis outside Vesterport (the West Gate) at the annual rent of 945 kroner. Therefore, until the 1850s, Tivoli was outside the city, accessible through Vesterport.
From the very start, Tivoli included a variety of attractions: buildings in the exotic style of an imaginary Orient: a theatre, band stands, restaurants and cafés, flower gardens, and mechanical amusement rides such as a merry-go-round and a primitive scenic railway. After dark, coloured lamps illuminated the gardens. On certain evenings, specially designed fireworks could be seen reflected in Tivoli's lake.

Composer Hans Christian Lumbye (b. 1810 - d. 1874) was Tivoli's musical director from 1843 to 1872. Lumbye was inspired by Viennese waltz composers like the Strauss family (Johann Strauss I and his sons), and became known as the "Strauss of the North." Many of his compositions are specifically inspired by the gardens, including "Salute to the Ticket Holders of Tivoli", "Carnival Joys" and "A Festive Night at Tivoli". The Tivoli Symphony Orchestra still performs many of his works.

In 1943, Nazi sympathisers attempted to break the Danish people's spirit by burning many of Tivoli's buildings, including the concert hall, to the ground. Undaunted, the Danes built temporary buildings, and the park was back in operation after a few weeks.
In 1874, Chinese style Pantomimeteatret (The Pantomime Theatre) took the place of an older smaller theater. The audience stands in the open, the stage being inside the building. The theatre's "curtain" is a mechanical peacock's tail. From the very beginning, the Theater was the home of Italian pantomimes, introduced in Denmark by the Italian Giuseppe Casorti. This tradition, which is dependent on the Italian Commedia dell'Arte has been kept alive, including the characters Cassander (the old father), Columbine (his beautiful daughter), Harlequin (her lover), and, especially popular with the youngest spectators, the stupid servant Pierrot. The absence of spoken dialogue is an advantage, as Tivoli is now an international tourist attraction.

Tivoli is always evolving without abandoning its original charm or traditions. As Georg Carstensen said in 1844, "Tivoli will never, so to speak, be finished," a sentiment echoed just over a century later when Walt Disney said of his own Tivoli-inspired theme park, "Disneyland will never be finished as long as there is imagination left in the world." Walt Disney during a trip overseas with his wife Lilly visited Tivoli Gardens. Walt was so impressed with the Danish amusement park, he immediately decided Disneyland should try to emulate its "happy and unbuttoned air of relaxed fun."

I am now convinced I have to go to Trivoli Gardens, after finding vintage postcards and a stereo card of this beautiful place, I began researching it for an upcoming article in Piddlestixs 4. I'd love to get married here, or have a honeymoon here, its beyond magical and filled with vintage enchantment.

-All pictures, and some text from


Tristan Robin Blakeman said...

how wonderful!
I've never been to Denmark - but it seems well worth a consideration to see this treaure!

nancy said...

i want to go!!
what a wonderful place, thanks for posting this!

chinamommy said...

just wanted you to know i'm doing a give away on my blog for one of my... cutie cupcakes!! Make sure YOU enter (& see how you can get extra entries!!).
LOVE the beautiful gardens you've been showing us this summer! What's new with your ART??????

Crafty Gal Linda said...

Is it true that you are having an art retreat next April? Omgosh I am so looking forward to hearing the details. Finally something I can go to that is within 2 hours from where I live. :) I already told two people about it and am hoping that I can room with them. Waiting with bated breath to hear your news Lisa! :)

Geralyn Gray said...

I just blogged about your event today with a link to your ning site.......I featured an old Red Bank postcard. I hope you are still coming tomorrow!!!!!! I am looking forward to seeing you!!!!!

Marie Antionette said...

Hello Lisa Dear, My dream for you and I pray this will happen, that you find your Prince Charming,Get married and honeymoon here in this magical wonderful place, because anywhere else won't do for your kind spirit.I truelly believe this.XXOO Marie Antionette

faerie enchantment said...

Thank You all for filling my days with magic, your comments brighten my light!

Well its official, I went for it, going on a much needed vacation after constant straight work, to Tivoli Gardens with Glenny and a good friend couple next July, Our friend has citizenship in Denmark, so he is really going to show us around.

Mari Antoinette, you are just pure magic, the finest around!

Everyone who visits my blog ultimately are the best!


Shelley said...

OMG...I want to go there! And H.C. Lumbye is a relative on my mother's side of the family. HOW COOL you should mention him.