SLOWLY but surely Torrevieja is building a reputation for herself as a major player in the world of tourism. Although the city will never rival the vast Skyscraper Hotel City of Benidorm who depend almost solely upon the hotel trade to survive, Torrevieja has taken a different approach.
Sport, Health, Ecology and Culture are major tourism factors for Torrevieja along with the beautiful beaches and warm waters of the Mediterranean.
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Last year, the Sports Complex opened its doors and with it, a new era of Sports tourism. Opportunities for ecology abound with the La Mata Natural Parks, SaltLakes and sand dunes and September will witness Spain’s newest, and one of the most impressive musical conservatories, open.
On Friday evening, yet another piece of the jigsaw was put into place with the inauguration of the city’s Auditorio-conservatorio Internacional de Música. Torrevieja now has two of the most enviable Tourist attractions in Spain, with the SportsCity and the new Conservatory Auditorium.
Trinidad Miró, Valencia’s Regional Minister of Culture and Sports, officiated over the opening, helped admirably by a rightly proud mayor in the guise of Pedro Hernandez Mateo, who told the invited audience that the auditorium was one of his dreams that he could never have imagined when he first came to office over twenty years ago.
On stage, Trini Miró said “this project was designed to respond to the cultural objectives of Torrevieja as a major tourist city and to support the organization of musical events and cultural relevance of the city internationally” and constituted “a great example that demonstrates the commitment of the Valencian Government’s policy of decentralization and to comply with the aim to provide our municipalities with infrastructures, ensuring them access to culture of the highest degree.’
According to the Councillor, “from today, the city of Torrevieja has more space, a place to meet and exchange, that I am sure will become a major benefit to the city’s cultural life and as a leisure zone.”
Trinidad Miró, and Torrevieja’s mayor, Pedro Hernandez Mateo gave their apologies for President of the Generalitat, Francisco Camps, who could not make the presentation due to being infirmed with a back problem. The Minister said that this auditorium, along with the conservatory, which is built on the same plot of 92,000 m2 as part of the Sociedad de Proyectos Temáticos de la Comunidad Valenciana, will “act as key driver in the economic and cultural development of the province of Alicante.”
Spectacular it may be to look at but the audio quality also impressed, reaching every corner of the auditorium.
The first performance was from a symphony orchestra comprised of musicians from Torrevieja and other localities, led by Francisco Grau Vegara as well as the Municipal Choir “Ricardo Lafuente”, with the collaboration of Eldense soprano Ana María Sánchez, Laurel de Oro de las Artes; and director of the Municipal School of Theatre, Raúl Ferrandez.
The auditorium, which can also be used as a conference centre, has a total capacity for 1,800 spectators, split between the main symphony hall for 1,406 people and the Roam Theatre for 420. The adjacent Conservatory of Music, is built on a site of f 16,166 m2 in which the Government has invested 32 million euros. The Valencian government estimated that its construction has helped to create and maintain more than 1,000 jobs over the last for years with future plans for Halls of Residence on the site to come.
The Auditorium is also open for tours and a series of concerts until the end of June, 2011. A schedule of guided tours of the auditorium will take place on weekends from 11:00 to14:00 hrs and 17:00 to 20:00 hrs as follows:
MAY: Friday 6, Saturday 7, Sunday 8 only in the afternoon, Friday 13, Saturday 14 only in the afternoon, Sunday 15, Friday 20, Saturday 21, Friday 27, Saturday 28 and Sunday 29 only in the morning.
JUNE: Friday 3, Saturday 4 only in the morning, Sunday 5 only in the morning, Friday 10 only afternoon, Saturday 11, Sunday 12 only in the morning, Friday 17 plus Saturday 18 and Sunday 19 only in the morning, Friday 24, Saturday 25 only on the morning and finally Sunday 26 will be last last day of the tour schedule.
Deputy Mayor and Councillor for Culture, Eduardo Dolon also announced a calendar of events that are open to the public. Starting proceedings for April is the Sala Sinfónica, la Orquesta de Cámara Ars on April 7 and on April 10 there is a Spring Concert, Concierto de Primavera with the Unión Musical Torrevejense and the Orfeón Municipal “Ricardo Lafuente” Choir.
The program for May includes an Opera Choir Concert on Saturday 14, the Symphony Orchestra Ars Torrevejense Aetheria and Coral “Francisco Casanovas.” On Sunday, May 29 the Orfeón Municipal Ricardo Lafuente Choir will perform again led by Mario Bustillo. For early June, the auditorium hosts the Ricardo Lafuente Choir and Coral Maestro Casanovas on Saturday June 4 with a concert by the Coro Sol y Sal, Coro Lírica Nostra and Coro de Amas de Casa Cecilio Gallego are on stage the following day, Sunday June 5.
Also noteworthy is a special concert on Friday, June 10 featuring the University Choir Santo Tomas from Manila (Philippines) who were the Contest Winner of the International Habanera and Polyphony of Torrevieja. On Sunday 12 June, the Masa Coral José Hódar, the Coral Manuel Barberá, la Coral Torrevejense Francisco Vallejos and the Escuela de Cuerda Pulsada are all on stage.
On Friday 17, a Concert will be held by students and teachers from Torrevieja’s Conservatory of Music, on June 18 there is a concert by the MunicipalChoir School Chorus from La Purisima, followed on Sunday 19 with a performance from Coro Bella Torrevieja, Coro Nueva Generación y Coro Nuevo Amanecer de Torrelamata.
The inaugural concert series comes to an end on June 25 when the Sociedad Musical “Ciudad de Torrevieja” Los Salerosos will close the concert sessions for the summer.