Hermitage Days - 2005
This year the traditional Hermitage Days are celebrated from 5 to 10 December.
The week-long festivities opened on 5 December with an Internet chat by Director of the State Hermitage Mikhail Piotrovsky on "The Hermitage in the 60th Anniversary Year of Victory in WWII." The main topics of this web-encounter were new projects and programs of the museum in Petersburg, around Russia and abroad. On the same day journalists were shown the most interesting Hermitage publications of 2005 as well as the joint project between the museum and Module-Plasma Ltd - the new ART-MUSEUM channel which will acquaint visitors to more than 50 cafes around Petersburg with a digital portrait of the State Hermitage.
On 5 December the museum marked the International Day of Volunteers for the third year. More than 100 people came on this day to the Hermitage Theatre. Mikhail Piotrovsky delivered words of greeting. The best volunteers were given award documents and souvenirs.
On 6 December a press trip was arranged for journalists to the Staraya Derevnya Restoration and Storage Center. There they were shown new open storage areas with displays of frescoes from the Oriental Department and Department of History of Russian Culture, as well as sculptures from the Department of the Ancient World and Department of Western European Art. They also visited the educational program for children with poor vision called "The Past at Your Fingertips."
On 7 December, on the Birthday of the Hermitage, St Catherine's Day, the Hermitage Theatre was the venue for the traditional General Assembly of Museum Employees and then Mikhail Piotrovsky held a press conference for journalists during which he summarized the results of the year gone by and shared with them the plans for the future. The day ended with a stroll through the museum together with journalists. They were the first to see the exhibitions on The Hermitage in the World of Publications - 2005 and Masterpieces of 18th Century Sevres Porcelain. The journalists were also taken to the restored Jupiter Hall, which was later in the day officially opened to the public. They visited the Gallery of the History of Ancient Painting, which is still undergoing restoration work, and they were acquainted with the ongoing programs of reconstruction of the engineering console and heat generators of the Winter Palace. The stroll ended in the Internet Cafe, which is marking its fourth anniversary these days.
8 December was dedicated to the Hermitage Friends. In the morning a Round Table discussion on "The Hermitage in Russia" was held in the conference room of the Academic Council. Among those who took part in the conversation about past and future programs and projects of the Hermitage in various Russian cities were the museumís permanent partner museums from Irkutsk, Kaliningrad, Lipetsk, Smolensk, Staraya Ladoga, Krasnodar, Rostov-on-Don, and Novgorod. Then came the official opening of the exhibition Masterpieces of 18th Century Sevres Porcelain.
The day ended with the Evening of Hermitage Friends in a program which included a meeting with Mikhail Piotrovsky, the distribution of Honorary Diplomas and Letters of Appreciation to the museumís sponsors, the presentation of a new collection from the Fashion House of Tatyana Parfenova, a concert by the State Hermitage Orchestra and a visit to the exhibition of Sevres porcelain.
On 9 December 2005 employees of the State Hermitage received state awards of the Russian Federation and the Republic of Finland in a festive ceremony which took place in the St. George Hall (Large Throne Room) of the Winter Palace.
A concert was given by the Admiralty Orchestra. In the evening the Orchestra opened the Sixth International Festival of Admiralty Music. In the concert program of "martial music," they performed works by Wolfgang Amadeus Mozart, Ludwig van Beethoven, Hector Berlioz, Franz Schubert, Igor Stravinsky, V. Runov, V. Malygin and Piotr Tchaikovsky.
On 10 December, the Second International Conference of Hermitage Friends was held within the context of the Hermitage Days.