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Leading cultural centres join forces to bring hope and show respect amidst the pandemic

09.04.2020 / Leenu Nigu

estonian-national-opera_photo-by-tanel-meos

Four cultural, concert and event centres across the Nordic hemisphere will be lit in green, the colour of hope, to show respect to everyone struggling from the current situation and to remind us of more hopeful times ahead.

Leading cultural and concert centres from three countries across the Nordic hemisphere have joined forces in a campaign to bring hope to people, show respect and support to everyone facing the crisis. These cultural centres will be lit in green every night from Thursday, April 9th onwards for the time being. The campaign wishes to show support to everyone in these trying times: healthcare professionals, volunteers, parents, people suffering from loneliness or illness, the elderly and other people in quarantine, artist and all the others whose livelihood is threatened, and all those whose lives have been affected by the virus.

These centres also want to invite anyone working in culture, music and events to join them in this campaign, and send a public call for everyone to join. In doing so they also want to highlight the importance of international outreach even if the physical borders are now temporarily closed.

”Even though social distancing is preventing us from being close together, it is vital that we do not try to fight this alone. I am grateful to all our international friends in the culture and events industry for their endless support and help, for coming together also during this crisis, and for sharing their innovations and best practices so generously. We welcome everyone working in culture, music and events to join us in this campaign; it is more important than ever to cross boundaries and to seek for international perspective, learning and support”, states Ms. Paulina Ahokas, CEO of Tampere Hall.

Aivar Mäe, General Manager of Estonian National Opera and Ballet continues: “Through this gesture, we want to bring hope and some light into people’s hearts. We also wish to send a message to all the people in the world that once this crisis is over, all of us working in culture welcome our audiences back with open hearts.”

The cultural centres are aware of their key role in bringing back hope, trust and economical activity once the crisis is over. “Those of us working in culture, arts and events have a big responsibility in keeping hope alive and continuing to share as much beautiful, inspirational music as we can. By doing so we remind people of the importance and relevance of arts and culture – particularly in times of deep crisis such as the one we are all living through today. These trying times will end and then we´ll come together again in our shared spaces and cultural centres to celebrate our common humanity and having gotten through this, first and foremost by supporting each other.”, says Svanhildur Konráðsdóttir, CEO of Harpa.

Kristiina Alliksaar, the Director of Vanemuine explains the joint decision for the colour: “Green symbolizes hope and harmony, and this is what we hope for everybody, wherever they might be and whatever their situation. In some parts of the world it is also the symbol for change. This crisis has already demanded a lot of creativity from everyone. We are convinced that the new challenges, and the need for innovation in our societies will be met with the support of the arts and culture.”

The following cultural and events centres will be lit in green from April 9th onwards, every night: Tampere Hall and Tampere Opera in Finland, Harpa in Iceland, Estonian National Opera and Ballet in Estonia and Vanemuine Theatre in Estonia (lighting from sunset to sunrise).

Photos of buildings lit up in green can be seen HERE.  

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