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Procol at Ledreborg: after after-show

Niels-Erik Mortensen's Tivoli trip, 21 August 2006

Tivoli – a short introduction

Tivoli is the most popular amusement garden in Denmark. Offering entertainment, rides and a lot of restaurants, the garden is situated right in the middle of the City of Copenhagen, though keeping a beautiful scenery. Once I met an elderly American couple in the garden. When the gentleman touched some leaves, he ecstatically cried out: “Oh, they are real flowers - !” As opposed to - ?

In the beginning, Tivoli was inspired by the so called romantic pleasure gardens of the 19th Century Europe. Again, the Danes copied an international idea, not only for Tivoli, but also for a local Crystal Palace from the London world fair – now a part of  the Botanic Garden. It was Romantic in the sense that Tivoli was landscaped according to the English tradition of forming naturalistic ornaments, as opposed to the French style with its strong, geometric lines. Tivoli's founder, Georg Carstensen (1812-57) was a lieutenant in the Royal Guard who had seen pleasure gardens on his journeys through Europe, and in 1841 he applied to King Christian VIII for permission to establish and run his 'Tivoli & Vauxhall' for five years. It's been there ever since, whereas the Vauxhall Theatre disappeared shortly after. Some have seen the Tivoli as a peaceful instrument to keep the growing town bourgeois class amused, so the good citizens would spend their time entertaining themselves instead of forming political parties and demanding democracy.

(According to Wikipedia, Georg's sister, Annette Adelaide Christine Carstensen, was the mother of Sir Robert Hay-Drummond-Hay, whose second wife Lady Grace Hay-Drummond-Hay (nee Lethbridge) was the first woman to travel by air from Europe to the US as well as the first woman to circumnavigate the globe in the air. Both of these in a Zeppelin.)

Carstensen's recipe for an entertainment garden was this:
1. A Bazaar for trading Danish and foreign products
2. A Concert Pavilion
3. A Theatre for Dance, Masques etc.
4. A Cosmorama or Panorama
5. Fireworks platform
6. Swings, Merry-Go-Rounds, Slides etc.
7. Skittle alleys and other games
8. Billiards
9. A restaurant
10. Coffee houses and smoking salons
11. Patisseries

To-day during the April-September season, Tivoli offers a genuine music festival in the Tivoli Concert Hall – a venue well known to Procol Harum in the 70s. The major music event for pop and rock audiences might be the Friday Rock Party, an open-air event featuring local and international rock stars (including Eric Clapton, Bill Wyman's All Starr Band (w/ Gary), The Beach Boys, Ray Charles a.m.o.)

To go on the rides you need a Multi-ride ticket or Turpas which you can buy along with your admission. You can buy ride tickets in the vending machines. At each ride you'll find a sign stating the number of tickets you need for the ride. The Multi-ride ticket gives free access with due consideration for safety regulations.

Outside each of the restaurants you'll find a menu listing the food and prices of that restaurant. Pre-booking is recommended if only on the same day at the beginning of your day in Tivoli. Inside the garden, you'll find at least 50 different restaurants.

Posters throughout Tivoli will list the programme for each day. You can also look for the signs at each venue.