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Backing new concert hall

October 25, 2006, 01:45 CEST

Statoil is to serve as general sponsor for the construction of a new concert hall in Stavanger, and will contribute NOK 30 million to the project.

The concert hall is due to be completed in 2011. (Illustration: Medplan AS Arkitekter)

“We want to be involved in a lasting cultural project in our home town,” says Reidar Gjærum, executive vice president for corporate communication.

“It’s important that Stavanger is an attractive place to live, a place where people want to move and remain. In this way, we want to take responsibility for helping to ensure good conditions for developing the region’s music and cultural life.”

Statoil’s donation ensures full funding of the new building, which is due to be completed at Bjergsted in 2011 at an estimated cost of just over NOK 1 billion.

The NOK 30 million being contributed by the group makes it the largest private donor to the development.

“It’s incredibly gratifying that Statoil has made what is probably the largest-ever single contribution to cultural life in the Stavanger region,” says mayor Leif Johan Sevland.

“Even at an international level, this donation ranks very high. I’m glad that Statoil is making such a strong commitment to the local area.”

This support is a natural extension of the group’s long-standing collaboration with the Stavanger Symphony Orchestra, says Mr Gjærum.

That sponsorship dates back to 1990, and it has now been made clear that the existing agreement will be extended – initially to 2009.

“We’ve benefited greatly from our collaboration with the orchestra through our own concerts at home and abroad,” observes Mr Gjærum.

“We’re now looking forward to a new concert hall with an acoustic auditorium, a multi-use room and a large outdoor amphitheatre.

“These facilities will ensure that the building not only serves high culture but is also available for many different forms of musical and artistic expression.”

Under the sponsorship agreement, Statoil has opportunities to use the auditoria in the new concert hall for its own events.

This building will be well suited for conferences and meetings, and the annual To the City from Statoil concerts will be held in future in the new amphitheatre.

“Stavanger has a vibrant musical life,” says Mr Gjærum. “We believe the new concert hall will not only strengthen this but also make a long-term contribution to sustaining such activities.”