The City of Culture, Tunisia’s largest multi-faceted cultural monument, was officially inaugurated on Wednesday evening.
The richly equipped City of Culture complex, launched a decade ago but long stalled, incorporates a modern art museum, a 1,800-seat opera, two theatres, a cinema, library and studios to host festivals.
“Every Tunisian should be proud of this project, culture is the main tool with which we will fight terrorism,” President Beji Caid Essebsi said at the opening ceremony. “Tunisians have to dream and have confidence in themselves.”
He thanked all those who contributed to the realisation of this project, saying “this City of Culture will remain a wealth for the future generations because Tunisia believes in culture, freedom and creativity.”
Located in central Tunis, the nine-hectare Cite de la Culture with its iconic glass globe is estimated to have cost 130 million dinars.
Culture Minister Mohamed Zine el Abidine told reporters at the opening that it is “the largest cultural complex in the Maghreb, the Arab world and Africa”.
The newly formed orchestra of the Tunis Opera played music from Carmen’s Bizet sung by three Tunisian artists, accompanied by a choir and orchestra from Ukraine.