Thinkers, entrepreneurs and quality of life
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Facts and figures - Nuremberg Metropolitan Region
Commerce and employment
The Nuremberg Metropolitan Region enjoys a broad spectrum of skills in industry and services. Medium-sized companies predominate and there are numerous “hidden champions”, constituting a key pillar of support for the regional business and labour market.
- GDP at market prices: 147 bn. €
- Economic development: +12.7 %
- Export rate: 49 %
- Employed persons liable to national insurance payments at the place of employment: 1.35 mio.
- GDP per employee: 85,300 €
- Business entities: 150,000
Geography and population
The Nuremberg Metropolitan Region comprises 23 administrative districts and 11 self-administering towns in Central Franconia, Upper Franconia and in parts of Lower Franconia, the Upper Palatinate and Thuringia. Overall, around 3.5 million people live in the Metropolitan Region.
- Area: 21,800 km²
- Inhabitants: 3.6 mio.
- Population development: -1,6 %
- Population density: 160 inh./km²
- Accessibility (radius 200 km): 27 mio. people
Facts and figures - Nuremberg Metropolitan Region
Science and innovation
Investments in education and research create the basis for progress in the global competitive environment. The Nuremberg Metropolitan Region enjoys excellent educational facilities and well-organised networks. Overall, 20 universities and colleges and 53 research institutes contribute to the successful transfer of new technologies and processes into the commercial sphere.
- Students: 93,000
- Universities: 3
- Colleges: 14
- Art and Music Academies: 3
Culture and tourism
World-renowned old towns such as Nuremberg, Dinkelsbühl, Rothenburg ob der Tauber and the world heritage city of Bamberg, the Richard Wagner Festivals and the Nuremberg Singer Songwriter Festival – through these, the Nuremberg Metropolitan Region annually welcomes 6.5 million guests, and every fifth visitor is from abroad.
On top of that comes domestic tourism. Over half of revenue sales from tourism are generated by day visitors. The ten nature parks are a major attraction. Every second square metre lies in a nature park.
- Arriving guests: 6.5 mio.
- Trend in arriving guests: +16,6 %
- Accommodation businesses: 2,500
- Overnight stays: 14.2 mio.
- Trend in overnight stays: +11.9 %
Sources: Bayerisches Landesamt für Statistik und Datenverarbeitung
In the year 2000, Nuremberg celebrated the city’s 950th anniversary. The Mummpitz Theatre decided to honour the occasion by inviting ten exceptional European theatre productions for children and thus start the anniversary year by giving the youngest citizens of Nuremberg something to celebrate. The European Children’s Theatre Festival, known as panoptikum, was a huge hit, both with lay and expert audiences. Almost all of the performances sold out before the festival opened, and the event delighted both the press and public. Due to the success of the event, the festival’s backers decided to finance a second edition in 2002. That year, the Mummpitz Theatre, in collaboration with the Junge Theater Augsburg, first presented panoptikum as a Bavarian-European children’s festival. Since then, the festival puts the European children’s theatre scene to the test every two years whilst providing Bavarian children’s theatre with a platform.
panoptikum’s goal is to showcase the full range of European and Bavarian children’s theatre as well as encourage exchange, deepen contacts and present new companies, material and styles.
More information at: www.festival-panoptikum.de
What began as the “Festival für Jiddisches Lied” – or festival of Yiddish song – in 1988 is now, along with Krakow and Toronto, one of the three most renowned klezmer festivals worldwide. For ten days every two years, the International Klezmer Festival in Fürth presents the many directions and styles that klezmer musicians are working in nowadays. In addition to traditional styles, Yiddish pop, klezjazz, klezmer rock and punk have long since won over audiences. Film screenings, music and dance workshops, lectures, audience discussions and city tours provide visitors from Germany and Europe a deeper understanding of the past and present of Jewish culture. A three-day interlude shortens the time period between the big, ten-day festivals, which take place in even-numbered calendar years.
More information at: www.klezmer-festival.de
The Turkish/German Film Festival, held in Nuremberg since 1992, is dedicated to German and Turkish cinema. The festival was initially called Türkei Filmtage, but changed its name to InterFilmFestival in 1998. Since 2003, it has operated under its current name. The now 11-day festival is amongst the most important intercultural events in Germany and has also drawn international attention. The goal of the festival is to “provide cultural groups from different backgrounds with a shared platform for dialogue through the aesthetic and informative means of cinema”.
The festival is organised by the association “InterForum Kunst & Kultur – Nürnberg international” and the City of Nuremberg’s Office for Culture and Leisure. In 1995, the festival received the Cultural Award of the City of Nuremberg, followed by the Ankara Media Prize for International Film in 2006. In 2010, mayor Dr. Ulrich Maly presented the founder of the festival, Adil Kaya, with the City of Nuremberg’s Citizen’s Medal.
The Grenzland (Borderland) Film Festival in Selb was established in 1977. This small but exquisite festival presents a fine selection of films every year. At the beginning, the festival focused on Eastern European cinema, but now it shows a variety of features, documentaries and short films.
In keeping with its long-standing mission, the Grenzland Film Festival wishes to entertain viewers while also making them think. Every year, a carefully curated selection of films, organised into genre-specific programmes, is presented on the second weekend after Easter at cinemas in Selb.
“The show that unfolds in important theatres and on improvised stages in the greater Middle Franconian region every two years has changed over the past 30 years, going from a simple and initially ridiculed ‘puppet party’ to the most important international event of its kind, which has long transcended the boundaries of its genre. It is precisely the unhindered and unlimited playability of this art form, which by now has left its mark on the increasingly wordless and image-less ‘proper’ theatre, that makes it so unpredictable and simultaneously fascinating. Puppet theatre has come a long way. It dares to step onto the big stage; it is open to all kinds of visuals, no matter how fleeting; it experiments with new media; it allows its namesakes to change or even shed their shape completely, and it transports the spectator deep into its scenery and stories.” (Theater heute issue 8, August/September 2009)
The International Puppet Theatre Festival takes place every two years in the metropolitan area around Erlangen, Nuremberg, Fürth and Schwabach. More than 50 international theatre groups perform around 100 shows to a total of 25,000 visitors at 20 different venues. During the course of ten days, the groups present productions that fall under the current definition of contemporary puppet theatre: puppet theatre, theatre of objects or visuals, theatre that cuts across the boundaries of dance, performance and circus, as well as the use of new media – video projections and interactive technologies – onstage.
More than any other form of theatre, puppet theatre has moved beyond its boundaries. It has adopted ideas from other theatrical fields, experimented with new forms of expression, and embraced interdisciplinary curiosity. The International Puppet Theatre Festival Erlangen, Nuremberg, Fürth and Schwabach is one of the most important epicentres for this kind of theatrical experimentation. Established in Erlangen in 1979, the festival has not only become the largest and most important platform for trans-boundary, interdisciplinary theatre in the German-speaking world, but also one of the leading festivals for puppet and object theatre and theatre of visuals worldwide.
Parallel activities: street theatre, exhibitions, films and workshops, presentations, production talks, discussions and, in cooperation with the FAU Erlangen-Nuremberg (Institute for Theatre and Media Studies), the “Intermedial Youth Forum”, which provides students and young theatre artists with a platform to present and discuss their work.
“The International Erlangen Comic Salon is not only the local comic scene’s biggest exhibition, but its organisers also see themselves as defending visual storytelling against its detractors.” (Frankfurter Allgemeine Zeitung, 26 May 2008).
Established in 1984, the biennial International Comic Salon Erlangen is the most important festival dedicated to graphic literature in the German-speaking world. The fact that the comic is now an accepted art form in Germany is due in no small part to the influence of this event. The International Comic Salon is held at a 15,000 square metre exhibition space, and its programme combines art and commerce, mainstream and avant-garde. In addition to reflecting the rich diversity of the genre, the event is both a measure of what is happening in the German scene and one of its driving forces. Every two years, the event draws more than 25,000 attendees.
The centrepiece of the International Comic Salon in Erlangen is the public fair at the Heinrich-Lades-Halle conference centre in the Erlangen city centre. Around 150 exhibitors – including German and international publishers, agencies, representatives of the comic book trade, and students taking comic classes at art academies – present their programme here. Several new publications receive their first public exposure at the fair, and visitors can watch more than 300 international artists draw or have them sign a copy of their book.
High-calibre exhibitions presented at different venues throughout the city constitute an important element of the International Comic Salon: solo exhibitions by international comic book stars as well as insights into the German-speaking scene, up-and-coming comic book artists, themed exhibitions about comic book history, comic books and new media, computer animation and film. Previous exhibitions have showcased the talents of Alex Barbier, Baru, Benjamin, Christophe Blain, Nie Chongrui, Derib, Hendrik Dorgathen, Will Eisner, Gipi, Reinhard Kleist, Ralf König, Isabel Kreitz, Don Lawrence, Nicolas Mahler, Lorenzo Mattotti, Max, Moebius, François Schuiten, Art Spiegelman, Joost Swarte and others.
The “Max & Moritz Gala” at the Markgrafentheater in Erlangen marks the salon’s culmination. The Max & Moritz Award, endowed by Bulls Press and presented by the City of Erlangen, is the most important recognition for graphic literature in the German-speaking world. By presenting the award, the salon recognises the work of exceptional artists, encourages meritorious publishing efforts, and contributes to a greater involvement with graphic literature. In recent years, Albert Uderzo, Jacques Tardi, Alan Moore and Pierre Christin received lifetime achievement awards in recognition of their work.
Parallel activities include lectures, talks and discussions with artists, authors, journalists and publishers, comic book readings, drawing contests, workshops, and “Family Sunday” with lots of activities for kids and teens at reduced admission prices. At the cinemas in Erlangen, the Comic Film Fest shows new comic book adaptations along with all kinds of animation, from contemporary Anime to avant-garde films.
The Thalmässing Short Film Festival started in 1995 and takes place annually during the month of May. The festival shows films of up to 15 minutes in length. It is open to all genres and styles, and presents animated and fiction films, documentaries, videos, in black-and-white or colour, with or without dialogue.
The competition features three prizes; the first two are awarded by the audience, whereas the festival team decides the winner of the third. In addition, the Eichstätt Media Centre awards a special prize. The Olga is to the Thalmässing Film Festival what the Oscars are to Hollywood. The Olga symbolises what is most important about the Thalmässing Film Festival and, of course, the reason why short films get made.
Every summer since 1949, the Romanesque cloister of the former Benedictine monastery has hosted the “Kreuzgangspiele” or “cloister performances”. The focus is on classic plays written by the likes of Kleist, Schiller, Lessing, Goldoni and Goethe. Shakespeare is also performed time and again. A children’s programme was added to the cloister performances in 1975. Over the years, fairytales like “Cinderella” or “The Brave Little Tailor” gave way to modern children’s literature like “Pippi Longstocking” or “The Robber Hotzenplotz”. Since the 2009 season, the cosy Nixel Garden along the city wall has also served as a stage. Feuchtwangen is one of the most richly traditional festival sites in the German-speaking world and a member of the association “Zehn deutsche Festspielorte” (ten German festival sites).
For over 130 years, the city of Rothenburg has travelled back in time around Whitsuntide – back to 1631, in the middle of the turmoil of the Thirty Years' War. With lots of dedication and attention to detail, 700 members of the "Historisches Festspiel ›Der Meistertrunk" club bring the past to life against the incomparable backdrop of the medieval city high above the Tauber Valley, creating a very special atmosphere that is both authentic and relaxing.
The festival portrays the siege and conquest of the Protestant city by the troops of the German Catholic League led by the Count of Tilly. Initially, during a military tribunal Tilly ordered that Rothenburg be pillaged and razed. However, inebriated by Franconian wine, he made an unusual proposal to the fully assembled town council: "If one of you has the courage and strength to drain this chalice in a single draught, I shall be merciful and forgive your guilt!" No easy task as the chalice held three and a quarter litres, but mayor Nusch accepted the wager and accomplished the seemingly impossible, rescuing the city with his "master draught". Every day during Whitsuntide, visitors can experience the dramatic hours between hope and despair as the story of the master draught is performed as a play in the "Kaisersaal" at the town hall – the actual scene of the historical event. More than 130 performers in authentic costumes and uniforms appear on stage. And you, too, can participate in the joy and relief of the fortunate rescue, which is celebrated with a big festival.
The climax of the events around Whitsuntide is the military parade on Sunday with more than 50 groups participating, including the magnificent Swedes in their uniforms with panaches and colourful sashes, the wild Croatians who show off their riding prowess by standing on horseback, and the sutler women who show with their authentic and harmonious singing that they can do much more than your first impression might suggest when you see them running through the streets yelling, arguing and fighting.
The parade, which includes 145 horses and 17 historic wagons, starts at the "Spitaltor" to the south and goes through the old city centre to the historic military camp outside the east gates of the city where battle-hardened soldiers demonstrate their skills in show fights and cooks can be seen plucking chickens or cutting vegetables. If you get hungry, near the "Galgentor" (gallows gate) the publicans offer a wide range of refreshments and there is excellent musical entertainment as well. And those who want to take home a souvenir of their excursion to the 17th century will find what they need at the heart of the old town in the crafts markets at the "Grüner Markt" and the "Jakobskirche" (St. James's Church). Besides Whitsuntide, the play about the saving of Rothenburg is also presented during the "Reichsstadttage" in September and the "Rothenburger Herbst" in October. For current information and tickets, see www.meistertrunk.de