Berlin’s Philharmonie will play host tonight (March 29) to a concert which, for the first time, finds the Berliner Philharmoniker and Staatskapelle Berlin performing on the same stage on the same evening. All the proceeds from the concert, as well as the webcast in the Berliner Philharmoniker’s Digital Concert Hall, will go to UNICEF’s children’s emergency fund in Japan.
The concert will be given at 8pm CET (7pm UK time; 2pm New York time; 3am tomorrow Japan time). Barenboim and the Staatskapelle Berlin open the concert with Tchaikovsky’s Sixth Symphony, Pathétique, and Rattle and the Berliner Philharmoniker follow with Brahms’s Fourth Symphony.
'In such a situation it is easy to feel helpless, but in this situation it is clear that concrete help is needed at once,' said Sir Simon. 'So we have organised a concert with our orchestras to raise money for UNICEF’s emergency fund in Japan. We would ask you and your friends to buy tickets for the concert and support the people in Japan. There is no time to lose.' To which Barenboim added, 'Anything that can be done will of course be too little. But if we do nothing, all we do is show some sympathy and perhaps even a little fear for our own future. This is why it is, so to speak, strategically and morally necessary to do something immediately. The people in Japan – particularly children and the elderly, who experienced Hiroshima in 1945 – should know that we are thinking of them and are trying to do something for them here.'
All proceeds from the concert and from the live webcast in the Digital Concert Hall will go to the UNICEF emergency fund in Japan. As Ken Hayami from the Japan Committee for UNICEF said, following the earthquake, the tsunami and the nuclear power plant disaster, UNICEF's top priority is to help traumatised children in the affected areas as quickly and effectively as possible. With this concert, the musicians would like to help them in their efforts. The orchestra has been an international UNICEF Goodwill Ambassador since 2007.
Tickets for the Digital Concert Hall cost €9.90.