Orchestra receives Japanese grant
On February 3, Slovak Foreign Affairs Minister Eduard Kukan and Japanese Ambassador to Slovakia Makoto Washitzu signed documents on a grant presented by the Japanese government.
Slovak Sinfonietta Žilina will use the grant to buy 46.1 million yen (Sk14.8 million, almost €395,000) worth of musical instruments and sound and lighting equipment. This orchestra is the eleventh Slovak institution to benefit from the strong relationship between the two countries.
Slovak institutions which have received the Japanese grants in the past include the Slovak Philharmonic Orchestra, Opera of the Slovak National Theatre, the State Opera in Banská Bystrica, and the State Theatre in Košice.
Our Bratislava wants to help the capital
NOT only the High Tatras but also Bratislava needs help, claims Peter Petras, one of the founders of an informal association, Naša Bratislava (Our Bratislava}, and manager of Rainerova chata (Rainer's chalet) in the High Tatras.
"We feel a certain imbalance, because many people, in particular from Bratislava, have set up an association to help the High Tatras - Naše Tatry (Our Tatras). Therefore, we felt it was our duty to launch a group which would help Bratislava," Petras told the SITA news wire.
The initiators of Our Bratislava feel a similar need for Bratislava, the country's capital. They would like to have a representative in the Bratislava city council when deciding on the capital's improvement.
"We, the citizens living outside Bratislava, may see problems more clearly than those living in Bratislava," said Petras.
Among the main priorities they want to push through is an end to the unrestrained urbanization of Bratislava, which, according to the group, is behind all the capital's problems. They also propose to halt the inflow of large investments, which decreases the need to improve infrastructure and puts pressure on the environment. They want all Bratislava citizens who have cottages and weekend houses outside the capital to move out of Bratislava. This would reduce the current number of Bratislava inhabitants by 100,000, to approximately 350,000.
"Maybe all the problems from which Bratislava suffers will disappear," Petras said.
Petras claims that the launch of Our Bratislava is not confrontational.
Prepared by Jana Liptáková
20. Feb 2006 at 0:00