Jewish music extravaganza began life in a church

BACK in the early summer, I was fortunate enough to spend a few days at Schloss Elmau, nestled in the foothills of the Bavarian Alps in south-east Germany.

The hotel and expansive grounds exuded a sense of cultured affluence, the kind of place that is, in fact, so perfectly tailored for every whim of the well-heeled that it doesn’t need to make a noise about how luxurious it is.

What I found far more intriguing was the fact that the resort — used by the G7 leaders for their annual get-together just two weeks after my stay — was established by early 20th-century theologian and philosopher Johannes Muller as a spiritual retreat.

Muller strongly believed, as we were told by his grandson, the present owner, that Jewish culture was core to German culture.

It beggars belief, then, that the same theologian was a supporter of Hitler because he felt the Nazi leader furthered a sense of the collective rather than the individual.

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