07 Apr 2013

“Culture: the cement that binds Europe together”


Opera Europa - RESEO Spring Conference/Vienna [4 April 2013]

A strong statement for the support of culture was delivered by European Commission President José Manuel Barroso at the Opera Europa - RESEO Spring Conference at the Vienna State Opera. In a speech opening the conference, he declared that “Culture is the cement that binds Europe together.” He spoke of his particular affection for opera: “Opera is the illustration par excellence of the long dialogue between European cultures across national boundaries, across centuries. Opera is Verdi, whose bicentenary we celebrate this year, Verdi, drawing the inspiration for his libretti from Shakespeare, Victor Hugo, Dumas, Schiller or the Duque de Rivas. Opera is the distilled expression of fundamental European values. It is Beethoven’s Fidelio, for instance, giving us a matchless chorus of homage to liberty and fraternity and love.”