June 3, 2015
German automaker BMW is boosting its cultural credentials by extending the free open-air event "Staatsoper für alle" June 21 for music lovers around the world.
The State Opera Choir will lead the concert through many iconic pieces that will resonate both on the festival grounds and also on digital connections in various countries. While brands strive to differentiate themselves through excellent product offers, cultural associations can sometimes play a bigger role in influencing how consumers perceive them.
"We like to create partnerships where an idea and vision are realized that are both that of the cultural institution, in this case one of the greatest opera houses worldwide, and BMW," said Dr. Thomas Girst, head of cultural engagement, BMW, Munich.
"It goes without saying that in regard to program and content absolute creative freedom is with the opera without any interference," he said.
The benefits of holding an exclusive sponsorship at a major event are hard to match.
At Staatsoper für alle, for instance, BMW brands two large pillars by the stage with its logo that are inescapable. For the thousands in attendance who are spellbound by the music and the many more watching remotely, the brand's logo will at least make a fleeting impression, further improving BMW's reputation as a supporter of the arts.
Of course, few brands are as well known as BMW, especially in Germany. Nonetheless, being recognized as the financial foundation of an adored event goes far.
Staatsoper für alle 2014
This year's open-air concert in Berlin will feature the State Opera Choir led by Daniel Barenboim and Lisa Batiashvili as soloist.
The group will perform Richard Wagner's "Entry of the Guests' from Tannhäuser," Peter Tchaikovsky's Violin Concerto in D major, Op. 35, and Ludwig van Beethoven's Symphony no. 5 in C minor, op. 67.
The event will take place in the Bebelplatz public square in Berlin's central Mitte district.
Staatsoper für alle 2014
For the second year, a live-stream will be available to those around the world.
In 2014, 29,000 viewers tuned in for the live-stream, expanding the Staatsoper für alle's mission to reach as many music fans as possible. Staatsoper für alle translates to state opera for all.
For the first time, ARTE concert will also broadcast the event, which will then remain available for 90 days.
BMW uses its clout to support other artistic endeavors.
For instance, BMW is celebrating 40 years of its renowned Art Car collection by displaying a number of the unique cars designed by famous artists at various locations around the world, including Hong Kong, Paris and Lake Como, Italy.
The Art Car Collection began in 1975 when French racecar driver Hervé Poulain requested a customized BMW designed by American artist Alexander Calder, sparking a popular tradition of artistic collaborations that the automaker has continued to this day. The 40th Anniversary of the Art Car Collection highlights BMW’s commitment to creativity in all areas, and while the cars are not available for purchase, they serve to remind consumers of the brand’s visual flair (see story).
Also, BMW is sponsoring creativity with the awarding of its first Art Journey in collaboration with Art Basel Hong Kong, which was given to Hong Kong-based Samson Young.
BMW is documenting and sharing Mr. Young’s tour of five continents with consumers, as he works on his “For Whom the Bell Tolls: A Journey Into the Sonic History of Conflict” project, focusing on the relationship between the military and the musical instruments. Supporting creative minds allows automakers to subtly broadcast their own ingenuity and attention to aesthetics (see story).
"This is good corporate citizenship at its best, providing tens of thousands of berliners and guests of Germany's capital to enjoy high culture for free, a great open air classical concert," Mr. Girst said.
"Through the years since its inception in 2007, almost half a million people could listen to classical music within an incomparable picknic setting," he said.
Joe McCarthy, staff reporter on Luxury Daily, New York