In 2011, the "Edelweiss" Foundation was the most significant financer of cultural life in Moldova.
6.3 Trends and indicators for private cultural financing
During 2010 and 2011, a Moldovan businessman was very actively involved in sponsoring culture through a private foundation - "Edelweiss". The Foundation allocated significant amounts to various sphere of culture – opera, theatre, literature, art education etc., but the most significant figures were not made public.
Only some figures were published on the Edelweiss website. For example, at the beginning of the new school year 2010, the Art School "Maria Biesu" (in the town of Stefan Voda) received a set of musical instruments worth 41 000 MDL (2 500 EUR).
Although not expressed in figures, it is worth mentioning the fact that this Foundation was the general sponsor of the 2010 international festival "Maria Biesu Invites". Thanks to sponsorship, soloists and orchestra directors from eight countries participated at the event this year. The funds also contributed to the future prestige of the event due to the calibre of guests in 2010 such as Ioan Holender, singer and impresario, Austrian opera director of Romanian origin, presently the Director of the Metropolitan Opera of New York. In the framework of the Festival, Mr. Holender also observed the work of the Opera and Ballet Theatre troupe in order to recruit talent for internship at the Metropolitan Opera of New York.
In October 2010, the Edelweiss Foundation signed a long term sponsorship agreement with the Union of Writers. The agreement envisages the publishing, in 2011, of local literature volumes, of which 50% will be the works of young writers. The agreement was signed on the occasion of the 90th anniversary of the Union of Writers, where the Foundation also gave awards to the members of the Union and provided financial assistance to retired writers.
This agreement also covers the publishing of the "Writers' Union of Moldova - 90th anniversary album"; the "Opera Omnia-2009" prize; prizes for prose, poetry, essays and literary criticism. Other projects that will be implemented within the framework of this agreement will be: partnering in organising the "A. Donici" Festival of Epigrams and Fables; launching a series of radio and TV shows for children and organising meetings between writers and children.
In 2011, the "Edelweiss" Foundation continued to be the most significant financer in cultural life of Moldova, supporting all spheres. Thus, during the year, the Foundation supported all of the main cultural events in the country, such as theatre premieres, festivals etc. Among other initiatives it supported the participation of a Moldovan representative to the "Eurovision" competition; the participation of Moldovan young talent in various international festivals and competitions – choirs, dance competitions; supported the production of a CD of choral music "Cantate Domine"; donated more than 15 000 books to rural libraries, as part of the support offered to the state publishing house "Cartea Moldovei" (The book of Moldova).
Two other significant companies in the private financing of culture are two mobile operators in Moldova – Orange and Moldcell. These two companies, with developed social responsibility policies, act as general sponsors of most international cultural events. While Orange is mostly involved in sponsoring the open air concerts for youth, or bringing to Moldova renowned stars like Cesaria Evora or Goran Bregovic, the Moldcell company has a clearly defined programme entitled "Ambassador of Culture". Moldcell's cultural agenda covers events like the annual International Jazz Festival "Ethno Jazz"; the fifth International Artistic Symposium "SummArt Painters' Campus 2008", the International Festival of Theatrical Art "BITEI", The International Festival "Queen Violin" and many other significant cultural events. For example, in 2009, Moldcell was the main partner of the Organ Hall, which hosted the unique performance of the famous violinist Vladimir Spivakov, the Artistic Director of the National Orchestra of Russia.
Of course there are many other small private enterprises like travel agencies or publishing houses that offer funds in different spheres of culture, but their agreement with organisers is of a barter nature and confidential. Unfortunately, the figures are not made public.
For now, these contributions may only be observed on promotion materials and during various launch events.