The Burgtheater (en: (Imperial) Court Theatre), originally known as K.K. Theater an der Burg, then until 1918 as the K.K. Hofburgtheater, is the Austrian National Theatre in Vienna and one of the most important German language theatres in the world. The Burgtheater was created in 1741 and has become known as "die Burg" by the Viennese population; its theatre company of more or less regular members has created a traditional style and speech typical of Burgtheater performance
The Hofburgtheater was founded by Maria Theresia in 1741 and was housed in the 'Ballhaus' in the Imperial Palace. In 1751 the theatre company moved to a new building at Michaelerplatz known as the Königliches Theater nächst der Burg (Royal Theatre near the Palace).
In 1888 the original theatre was demolished and replaced by the current building at the Ringstrasse, at the time known as the Königlich Kaiserliches Hofburgtheater. The façade still shows the name 'K.K. Hofburgtheater', but since 1919 the theatre has been simply known as Burgtheater. In 1897, less than ten years after its opening, the theatre had to be temporarily closed when it was clear that the acoustics were dreadful and many seats had no view of the stage at all.
The theatre is designed in Italian high-Renaissance style. Many sculptures decorate the ornamented façade.
The central statue shows a seated Apollo, with the muses Melpomene (muse of Tragedy) and Thalia (muse of Comedy) on either side. Below these figures is a large frieze depicting Bacchus and Ariadne, designed by Rudolf Weyr.
Corinthian pilasters and columns frame the windows which are crowned with busts of famous writers such as Molière, Shakespeare, Goethe and Schiller. The balustrade is decorated with figures of putti, each of them playing a different musical instrument.
The Liechtenstein Museum is in Vienna, Austria contains the art collections of its owners, the princely house of Liechtenstein. They include important European works of art, forming one of the world's leading private art collections. Its highlight used to be Leonardo's portrait of Ginevra de' Benci.
The museum, which was open to the public until the Anschluss of 1938, had various locations, including the Liechtenstein Garden Palace in the IX District Alsergrund, Vienna, and the Liechtenstein City Palace in Bankgasse, Vienna. It was reopened on 29 March 2004 and, after battling with lack of tourist interest, was shut down in November 2011.
According to the official website, "the highlights of the princely collections can be viewed exclusively as part of an event package or a pre-booked guided tour".
The Maria-Theresien-Platz of Vienna is a large square (Platz) joining the Ringstraße (Vienna's giant, round, central street) with the Museumsquartier, a museum of modern arts located in the former Imperial Stables. Facing each other from the sides of the square are two identical buildings, the Naturhistorisches Museum - Natural History Museum, and the Kunsthistorisches Museum - the Art History Museum.
These two buildings are identical, save for the statuary on their façades. The Naturhistorisches' façade has statues depicting personifications of the various continents known to Austrian science at the time - Africa, Asia, Europe and the Americas, while the Kunsthistorisches façade features famous European artists - such as the Dutch Bruegel, among others.
The Natural History and Art History museums and the square adjoining them were built in 1891, and in the center of the square is a large statue depicting Empress Marie-Theresa of Austria-Hungary, namesake of the square. The Modern Art Museum in the former Imperial Stables shows contemporary works that some may consider controversial. The three museums are all worthwhile destinations for tourists.
The Kunsthistorisches Museum has a magnificent collection. There are some very famous works by the Northern European masters, such as Bruegel's Tower of Babel, as well as an extensive collection of ancient world art. The Egyptian collection (Aegyptisches Sammlung) houses some fascinating mummified forms, stone carvings and the tomb of an Egyptian prince that was transported to Vienna and reassembled for Emperor Franz Joseph. On the stairwell's roof are some wonderful frescoes by famous Austrian artist Gustav Klimt.
The Naturhistorisches Museum has wonderful displays of butterflies and other insects, and an extensive preserved and stuffed animal collection - the most poignant examples of which include a Przewalskii's horse, a baby Javanese rhinoceros and a case of dodo remains. Also notable is the museum's famous Mikrotheater, showing slides of microscopic organisms, its two spider crabs which were sent to Emperor Franz Joseph of Austria-Hungary by the Japanese Emperor as a gift, and the first ever human depiction of an underwater scene made from life observation, and the diving bell from which it was made. On the stairwell you can see paintings of Emperor Franz Joseph, Empress Maria Theresa and her stuffed pet lap dog, a miniature hound.
The Austrian Parliament Building, is where the two Houses of the Parliament of Austria conduct their sittings. The building lies at the Ringstraße in the first district Innere Stadt in Vienna, close by the Hofburg Palace and the Palace of Justice.
The main construction lasted from 1874 to 1883. The architect responsible for the building was Baron Theophil von Hansen, and the building is an example of the Greek revival style. The architect, von Hansen, designed the building holistically, each element harmonizing with the others. He was therefore also responsible for the interior decoration, such as statues, paintings, furniture, chandeliers, and other elements. One of the building's most famous features is the statue of Athene, and the fountain is a notable Viennese tourist attraction. Following heavy damage and destruction during the Second World War, most of the interior has been restored to its original splendour.
The parliament building covers over 13,500 square meters, making it one of the largest structures on the Ringstraße. It was built to house the two chambers of the Imperial Council, or Reichsrat, the legislature of the Austrian part (Cisleithania) of the Austro-Hungarian Empire. Today, the parliament building is the seat of the National Council (Nationalrat) and the Federal Council (Bundesrat). It contains over one hundred rooms, the most important of which are the Chambers of the National Council, the Federal Council and the former Imperial House of Representatives (Abgeordnetenhaus).
The building also includes committee rooms, libraries, lobbies, dining-rooms, bars and gymnasiums. It is the site of important state ceremonies, most notably the swearing-in ceremony of the President of Austria and the state speech on National Day on each October 26. The building is very closely associated with the two Houses, as shown by the use of "Hohes Haus" as a metonym for "Parliament". Parliamentary offices overspill into nearby buildings such as the Palais Epstein.