This footage from November 1989, two days after the official fall of the Berlin Wall, shows Mstislav Rostropovich giving an impromptu performance of Bach’s cello suites at the Checkpoint C crossing point between East and West Berlin. 

Read our article ‘Witnesses to the fall’, from the March 2014 issue, in which string players and makers describe how the fall of the Berlin Wall changed their lives and Germany’s string scene.