Ark Nova
Lucerne Festival

What is the Ark Nova Lucerne Festival?

Lucerne Festival is one of the most popular music festivals in Europe. It partnered with a Japanese company that manages concerts to launch the Ark Nova Lucerne Festival.

The festival was started to bring hope to the Great East Japan Earthquake and tsunami victims through music. The earthquake struck regions in Japan on March 11, 2011. The disasters seriously affected the northeastern regions of Japan.

The ARK NOVA is an inflatable mobile hall for shows, concerts, exhibitions, and even festivals. The brains behind the festival are Anish Kapoor (an artist) and Arata Isozaki (an architect).The mobile hall was first used in Japan’s Matsushima on September 27, 2013 to host a concert. The Ark Nova hall was built to tour the Japanese regions and offer cultural events that give victims hope and drive new beginnings.

The tourable inflatable building isn’t just unique, but creates a perfect setting for theatrical performances, traditional Japanese dances, and contemporary classical music, among other great performances.

The Ark Nova can be deflated, packed up and transported from one event site to another, making it mobile. The inflatable PVC textile surface doesn’t require complementary metallic structures. And, its shape provides sufficient self-bearing and rigidity properties.

The physical attributes of the mobile concert hall gives it a spherical shape. Therefore, it was adapted for a more anisotropic and elongated shape to enhance its interior space acoustics due to the pavilion programs it was designed to host.

The multipurpose structure was built with a capacity of 500 people and the pavilion measures 36 meters in length and 18 meters high. The mobile hall features various mobile acoustic panels, making it versatile for hosting workshops or being used as a chamber room.

The ARK NOVA concert hall is fitted with important sound and stage equipment. The inside of the hall is one uninterruptable space with multiple stages to various events during the festival, ranging from art performances and orchestras to chamber music, exhibitions, and jazz.

However, the multistage format depends on the equipment arrangement in the inflatable concert hall.

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History of the Festival

The Ark Nova Lucerne Festival was founded post the huge tsunami and earthquake that hit the northeastern regions of Japan. Switzerland’s Lucerne Festival (a Swiss international festival) transferred some of its music programs to the affected areas to offer aid to victims.

Arata Isozaki (a Japanese architect) and Anish Kapoor (an Indian artist) collaborated to design a unique concert hall for the festival. They developed an inflatable hall that can be dismantled for portable use. The hall was named Ark Nova, a name borrowed from the Ark of Noah in the Bible.

The hall resembled the Leviathan, a project Kapoor designed for public display at Paris’ Grand Palais in 2011. The colossal Biblical installation reference resembled Ark Nova in its interior atmosphere and construction.

The Ark Nova, aka “Noah’s Ark,” means ‘new.’ According to the tale of floods in the Book of Genesis (Old Testament), Noah boarded animals in pairs and his family to spare their lives from the destruction. A rainbow was formed as a covenant sign post the floods.

The project was named Ark Nova, meaning “new ark” to resonate with the biblical story and indicate immediate recovery post the natural disasters.

Although the inflatable Ark can’t help animals and people to escape from natural disasters, it travels packed with different arts and music. This helps with long-term spirit and culture reconstruction. It also ignites the memory of Shinobu Orikuchi, a Japanese florist.

“Marebito,” a name used to refer to guests or visitors, brought festivals and religions into the picture while revitalizing societies. This also explains how arts came into being.

The Ark Nova was utilized as a “marebito” to explore all the regions in Japan that were affected by the disasters. It also generated all the activities that were aimed at highlighting each location, as it interacted with locals.

Despite its humble beginnings to fight the effects of natural disasters, event organizers seek to extend the building structure. This is aimed at rebuilding the “ARK NOVA,” a phrase that means “new arts.”

Types of Music Played at the Festival

The Ark Nova hosts various programs that showcase performances at the festival. It utilizes local musical expression activities and a blend of artistic performances from around the world, but with a focus on the Lucerne Festival.

The Lucerne Festival in Europe showcases classical music festivals in Switzerland’s Lucerne area. However, the Ark Nova Lucerne Festival displays soloists and orchestras from local areas and international scenes.

The types of music you can experience at the festival varies. They include rock music, hymns, indie, rap, gospel, and country music, among others. Whichever music you listen to at the festival, you’re guaranteed memorable experiences and a chance to help victims of the Japanese earthquake.


Arc-Nova Lucerne Festival


Arc-Nova Lucerne Festival


Arc-Nova Lucerne Festival

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