A devastating earthquake and tsunami struck the northeastern area of Japan on March 11, 2011. The LUCERNE FESTIVAL ARK NOVA was initiated immediately after this great earthquake by LUCERNE FESTIVAL, the Swiss international music festival, with the leadership of artistic director Michael Haefliger.
Although relief supplies and financial support were given priority after the disaster, we came up with the idea of delivering music directly to the people through the LUCERNE FESTIVAL for a long-lasting mental rejuvenation of the people. Also, in order to achieve a comprehensive art project in which the hall not only delivers music but also becomes a public place for gathering, it was decided to plan a mobile concert hall that travels around the Tohoku cities.
In recent years, concert halls are becoming more and more expensive to build, and require a lot of planning. Under such circumstances, it was a strong desire of Michael Haefliger, the artistic director of LUCERNE FESTIVAL, to establish a system that delivers art to anyone, anywhere. Also, with the leadership of contemporary composer Pierre Boulez, LUCERNE FESTIVAL has been working for the realization of a configurable concert hall. This was a challenging project for the world of classical music as well.
The first set of events took place during September 27, 2013, and October 13, 2013, in the town of Matsushima, Miyagi Prefecture. It provided a space full of various forms of arts such as the Lucerne Festival Orchestra conducted by Claudio Abbado in collaboration with the local orchestra, and music workshops for kids as well as traditional performing arts.