NEW YORK, 12 November 2007 –UNICEF today announced the appointment of the prestigious Berliner Philharmoniker as its latest Goodwill Ambassador.
“UNICEF is pleased to welcome the Berliner Philharmoniker to the UNICEF family,” said UNICEF Executive Director Ann M. Veneman. “Under the direction of Sir Simon Rattle, the orchestra has provided hundreds of young people with an opportunity to develop their potential. We look forward to working with the Berliner Philharmoniker to help improve the lives of children the world over.”
The Philharmoniker joins a highly distinguished roster of UNICEF Goodwill Ambassadors and Eminent Advocates, who help focus attention on the world’s most vulnerable children.
"We all feel deeply honoured to be connected with the extraordinary work of UNICEF,” said the orchestra’s Artistic Director Sir Simon Rattle. “We thank you for all you have done for the children of the world, and we just hope that we can, in some small way, be of assistance. As we say in England, more power to the elbows!"
The announcement comes as the Berliner Philharmoniker prepares to perform in New York, with three concerts scheduled for Carnegie Hall on 13, 14 and 16 November.
A formal ceremony will be held on 17 November, at the United Palace Theater in New York, where the Berliner Philharmoniker will present an education dance project based on Igor Stravinsky’s ‘Le sacre du printemps’ (the Rite of Spring), with the participation of more than 100 New York school children.
This performance is part of the orchestra’s educational outreach programme, Zukunft@BPhil, which seeks to make the work of the Berliner Philharmoniker accessible to the widest possible public.
"Working with children and young people is very important to us, a fact that has long been demonstrated by a wide range of projects such as Zukunkft@BPhil,” said Pamela Rosenberg, the orchestra’s Administrative Director.
“For this reason, the appointment of the Berliner Philharmoniker and their Artistic Director, Sir Simon Rattle, as UNICEF Goodwill Ambassadors fills us with great joy and pride. It is an immense honour for us to be able to participate in the admirable work of UNICEF."
About the Berliner Philharmoniker: The Berliner Philharmoniker, one of the world’s most famous symphony orchestras, was founded in 1882, celebrating its 125th anniversary this year. Sir Simon Rattle has been the orchestra’s Artistic Director since 2002. Famous conductors before him included Wilhelm Furtwaengler, Herbert von Karajan and Claudio Abbado. The orchestra consists of 125 musicians from 18 different nationalities, including 13 European countries as well as Australia, Israel, Japan, the USA and Venezuela.
About UNICEF UNICEF is on the ground in over 150 countries and territories to help children survive and thrive, from early childhood through adolescence. The world’s largest provider of vaccines for developing countries, UNICEF supports child health and nutrition, good water and sanitation, quality basic education for all boys and girls, and the protection of children from violence, exploitation, and AIDS. UNICEF is funded entirely by the voluntary contributions of individuals, businesses, foundations and governments.