Concert in the Leipzig Gewandhaus (1845)
The Leipzig Gewandhaus Orchestra was officially founded under this name in 1781 but the orchestra's roots date back to the fifteenth century. The term Gewandhaus, best translated as "cloth hall," makes reference to the fact that the city’s orchestra originally played in the medieval warehouse and sales hall of guilds active in the cloth trade. The concert depicted here took place during the period in which its principal conductor since 1835, Felix Mendelssohn-Bartholdy (1809-1847), transformed Leipzig into one of Europe’s leading musical centers and made the Gewandhaus Orchestra a first-rate ensemble. Wood engraving by an unknown artist, 1845.