Bonn shines: Magical light at the old town hall

Bonn shines : Magical light at the old town hall

"A person who makes a building colourful would not be taken seriously," Benjamin (13) pondered while observing the video spectacle projected onto the façade of the old town hall by the artist Wolfgang Flammersfeld as part of "Bonn Shines". The building is already quite colourful, but it has never been seen illuminated like this. A beautiful sight, says Benjamin's grandfather Karl-Heinz Pütz.

This spectacle in particular shows that the association City-Marketing Bonn clearly has more money available for this year’s "Bonn shines" than ever before. Using special technology, the old town hall is illuminated with structures and projections that are perfectly aligned with its architecture. The windows are surrounded by a water frame, antique columns shine between them in reference to Bonn’s Roman origins, then you see flower tendrils with a couple dancing between them as white shadows. A white shark floats over the façade, which then breaks open and makes Beethoven figures rain. This is accompanied by music or fitting sound effects.

The spectacle attracted many spectators to the town hall on Thursday evening, most of them holding up their phones. Pütz enjoyed the show of colours. "It's fantastic how the windows and the clock are integrated," he commented. With his wife and three grandchildren, he has already been to the Name of Jesus Church, which is not only illuminated on the outside. The church interior shines in alternating colours with relaxing electronic music in the background. The city centre is full of illuminated sights. The trees on Bottlerplatz are lit up in beautiful white colours as soon as it gets dark.

The Sterntor is also bathed in colour. There is a projection at Beethoven’s birthplace with the outline of Ludwig's face in white on a bright background, but here the work of art loses something in its impact. On Remigiusplatz, the Hermes figure on the roof of the Michels perfumery is illuminated; on Friedensplatz, bright red face profiles have been set up; and on Münsterplatz, a shining white figure looks down from the pavilion roof onto the abstract video projection at the Münsterapotheke.

A food festival is taking place alongside "Bonn Shines". Most of the 60 food trucks (that remained closed on All Saints' Day) are located on Münsterplatz. Unfortunately a little too close to the colourfully illuminated Beethoven, a couple from Bonn remarked as they enjoyed a glass of wine at one of the stands. The statue is not being shown to its advantage, they thought. They liked the colourful patterns on the university façade - if only the traffic hadn't been in front.

The spectacle, whose budget has tripled compared to previous years due to the unexpectedly good sale of the "Our Ludwig" statues, can be enjoyed until Sunday evening. The lights are switched on at 5pm and the city is lit up until around 11 pm. On Saturday from 6.30pm there will be dancing in front the Sterntor and the shops are open on Sunday, when the public utilities will switch on their Christmas lights for the first time. The Managing Director of City-Marketing Bonn, Maike Reinhardt, was relieved during a tour on Thursday that most of the light stations were working properly. Unfortunately not all of them - the spotlights under the trees on Poststraße and on the side of the old town hall did not come on and the stained glass window in the railway station did not light up at first. But these problems were quickly solved. (Original text: Stefan Knopp, Translation: Caroline Kusch)