On Sunday, September 28, 2003, at 9:00 a.m., the Director of the world-famous Berlin Philharmonic Orchestra, Sir Simon Rattle, will send the 35,000 participants from over 80 countries off running in the 30th real,- Berlin Marathon.
Sir Simon will make the starting shot of the spectacular anniversary marathon on the boulevard “Straße des 17. Juni“ – together with the mayor of Berlin, Klaus Wowereit.
“The Berlin Marathon and the Berlin Philharmonic Orchestra are beacons of this city, famous worldwide, and together they can improve and strengthen the image of the city around the world. Music and marathons are similar. You can only gain access through much training and discipline, it cannot be given to you or bought by you – which makes your own achievement even more satisfying when you reach your goal ... at the Brandenburg Gate“.
Marathon runners have a little catching up to do when it comes to classical music. In a representative survey at the last Berlin Half Marathon by SCC-Running in April, Samba music led with 73%, ahead of rock (42%) and pop (36%). Classical music received 6%, but was still ahead of traditional folk music.
Members and staff of the Berlin Philharmonic Orchestra have long participated in the Berlin Marathon. Christoph Hartmann, solo Oboist, is the sporty “figurehead“ of the Orchestra. He has been participating since 1997 and runs great times again and again. Like clockwork, he runs about a 2:45:00, regularly finishing among the top 300.
The Berlin Marathon has cooperated with the Philharmonic Orchestra often in the past few years. The internet site of the marathon promoted the music marathons, and the orchestra directed the attention of the friends of music to the athletic marathon.
However, over the 42,195 km course, about 60 bands, combos, and orchestras of all kinds, primarily jazz, however, motivate the runners and many spectators. That is what makes the extraordi-nary ambience of the marathon in Berlin.
It is not by chance that the course runs past the Philharmonics, past the “Konzerthaus“ (German Symphonic Orchestra) at the Gendarmenmarkt, by the “Staatsoper Unter den Linden“ (State Kapella) and past the back of the “Komischen Oper“ (Comical Opera).
The marathon now especially emphasises the “classical mile“ of the musical metropolis Berlin: ensembles will be playing classical music here for the enjoyment of both spectators and participants.
“Music and running are not luxuries, but basic needs, which through their indispensable energy should enrich the lives of every person“, according to Sir Simon, who will be directing 3 extra concerts with Cecilia Bartoli on the weekend of the marathon in the Philharmonics.
“Not only the Philharmonic Orchestra is forging new pathways; in this anniversary year we are also taking our marathon new ways – a new course and new finish. But the 42,195 km will remain the same, an indispensable basis, just as is the motivating euphony and rhythm of the music,“ says Race Director Horst Milde, who is looking forward to marathon Sunday with Sir Simon.