From 2006 to 2019 ”FAUST – The Rock Opera on the Brocken” was performed a total of 387 times with 88,000 visitors. This is a unique success story in the Harz region.
In 2020, the completely new production Faust ‘n’ Roll will be played. It is called Rock Theater after Goethe. This has almost the same scenes and does not exclusively use original words by Goethe. The individual stage sets are created using LED walls. This production is like an epigone without props.
The shows take place in the Goethe Hall inside the building on the Brocken. Located in 1146 meters above sea level, it is the highest positioned theatre in Germany.
The event starts by travelling with the stream train of the HSB through an extraordinary landscape to the Brocken. The steam trains have the age from 70 to 120 years. This trip lasts about 90 minutes. The train stops at the stations in Wernigerode, Drei Annen Hohne and Schierke.
Devils and witches take care of the audience while travelling to the Brocken
After arriving at the Brocken there is a chance to get a drink. Then the highlight is presented to you. For this, you move in a theatre hall with 270 seats. Goethe’s FAUST I or FAUST II is presented as a very special rock opera using 26 songs each. Both operas were written by librettist and composer Dr. Rudolf Volz. Only original lyrics by Goethe are used in the plays. A 4-CD box of FAUST I + II with a detailed booklet and a DVD of FAUST I are available.
There is an intermission after 60 minutes. The “Brockenwirt” is happy to serve you a “diabolic meal” during this time.
The second half of the show lasts for about 70 minutes.
After the show, the team of the HSB takes you back to the station where you got on the train.
All in all the total event last a little more than 7 hours.
HSB offers you a complete package consisting of train trip, musical show, devilish meal and Mephisto’s Liqueur.
Johann Wolfgang von Goethe did walk on the Brocken three times, for the first time on the 10th of December 1777. In commemoration of this event there is a plaque next to the buildings on the Brocken. The trail he choose is nowadays called the Goetheweg. There is a detailed documentation on the Goetheportal.
The Witches’ Mountain with its legends inspired the “noble poet” to the scene “Walpurgis Night” in his FAUST. Thus, the Brocken became quite known.
Witches and devils have a wild celebration during the Walpurgis Night on top of the Brocken.
Nowadays the Walpurgis Night is a tradioninal festival and is extensively celebrated on April 30th in many places in the Harz.
The sign of the
can be found everywhere in the Harz all over the year. The painting by Annette Krainhöfner-Fink shows the Witches’ Mountain and the steam train of the HSB. It’s on a decorative souvenir cup offered by the tourist shops.
Many professionals consider Goethe’s FAUST II to be the “Crown of World Literature”. This Rock Opera is the only staging of the theatrical literature as an opera, and that’s within 200 years since its publication. This opera is performed on the Brocken only and, therefore, a very special cultural event.
In 1994, the HSB was looking for a show with the themes Goethe, Faust, Brocken and Walpurgis Night. The Rock Opera FAUST did turn out to be the perfect show. It has far exceeded our expectations.
(Matthias Wagener, Managing Director HSB, on the occasion of his speech on the 10th anniversary on the Brocken)
The Brocken is located within the Harz National Park. Due to its exposed location, the climate of the Brocken peak with 1141 m corresponds to the condition of about 1,800 m in the Swiss Alps. There is a harsh and subalpine climate with sometimes very violent winds. That’s why the hilltop is above the treeline.
The Brocken is covered in fog on more than 300 days a year. Optical illusions such as the Brockengespenst have scared visitors in former times. This and the many legends give the Brocken a mystical aura.
The Brocken has become a tourist magnet. More than two million people visit the hilltop every year. On some days there are more than twenty thousand. The legendary Brocken-Benno keeps the record. He walks to the hilltop every day and has done this over 8,000 times.
The Brockenbahn is a nostalgic steam train what drives up to the hilltop. This is railway romance at its best. It is possible to use horse-drawn carriages starting at Schierke. There are various trails for hikers. Many mountain bikers feel challenged to drive up the hill. Motorized vehicles are not allowed with the exception of e-bikes.
There are many nice hotels within walking distance to one of the train stations:
Two regular buses (Schierke-Braunlage and Wernigerode-Quedlinburg)
demonstrate the tie of the Rock Opera with the Brocken.