Mayor of Narva, Aleksei Jevgrafov, is requesting financial help from the Ministry of Culture to buy a piano for €125,000 so major concerts can be held in the city.
In a letter sent to Minister or Culture Tõnis Lukas, Jevgrafov wrote: "The City of Narva is appealing to you regarding the need to acquire a new piano. This important acquisition for the City of Narva, in cooperation with the state, will create an opportunity to hold major international cultural events which are important for the development of Estonian cultural life."
According to the mayor, the average price of the required piano is about €125,000. Jevgrafov wrote that this sum is too expensive for the city budget to be able to afford on its own, but it could pay for a third of the cost.
The mayor said music events of national and international importance are held in Narva which are attended by a large number of people. He mentioned as examples the International Chopin Competition and the International Evgeny Mravinsky Music Festival.
"Great facilities must be provided for the creation, enjoyment and transmission of culture," Jevgrafov said. "Big events mainly take place in the city's largest concert hall, the Geneva Concert Hall, and are often performed with a concert piano that unfortunately does not meet quality requirements. This creates obstacles that sometimes prevent us from organizing high-level events."
He also mentioned that Rector of the Estonian Academy of Music and Theater, Ivari Ilja, has believed since 2009 that the piano used in the Geneva Concert Hall does not meet modern requirements and should be replaced.
Editor: Helen Wright