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The winners of the 2017 Culture Friend of the Year awards were announced

7. March 2018 - 20:35
Rain Lõhmus ja Indrek Saar
Rain Lõhmus ja Indrek Saar

Today, Minister of Culture, Indrek Saar recognised the businesses and private individuals who contributed to the field of culture during 2017. The Culture Friend laureates are Utilitas and Kristjan Rahu, Rain Lõhmus, Armin Karu, Eva and Bengt Heyman, as well as Turid Farbregd.

A total of 30 friends of culture were recognised, of which five were honoured with the title of Culture Friend of the Year.

Minister of Culture Indrek Saar thanked all the patrons of culture. The minister noted that link between private capital and culture is becoming increasingly clear and the state is trying to accommodate the needs of the cultural field in any way possible.

The 2017 Culture Friends of the Year are:

·         Utilitas and Kristjan Rahu – for their support of the Tallinn City Theatre and the Midwinter Night's Dream theatre festival, as well as organizing linguistic trips for the students of the theatre school. Among his many other activities, Kristjan Rahu has also been an outstanding supporter of the sports field;  

·         Rain Lõhmus – For donated LHV Group shares to the Estonian National Culture Foundation. The current market value of the shares is over one million euros. The dividends of the shares will be used to fund scholarships from the Rain Lõhmus Fund, the goal of which is to support young talents;

·         Armin Karu – for continuous support of the film industry. He has helped to fund films that are primarily intended to introduce, interpret and popularise topics related to Estonian history. Armin Karu finances the annual award for the best film selected by the film critics of Estonia and provides continuous support for PÖFF; 

·         Eva and Bengt Heyman – for preserving the cultural heritage of the coastal Swedes in the Coastal Swedes Museum. For example, the family has supported the purchase of the exhibition house, the acquisition of a minibus, and development of a boat basin. Although Eva Heyman died recently, the award is intended to convey recognition and thanks to the entire family for its invaluable contribution to the preservation of heritage;    

·         Turid Farbregd – for the largest donation made by a private individual to Cultural Endowment of Estonia. The donation is intended for the financing of the translation of Estonian literature and, the “Norwegian Purse” programme established thereby is already receiving applications for translations and publications. Estophile Turid Farbregd has himself also translated Estonian literature starting with Jaan Kross and ending with Andrus Kivirähk


The 2017 Friends of Culture are:

·         AS Tallink Grupp

·         Iv Pluss AS

·         Jaan Metssalu

·         U.S. Embassy in Estonia

·         OÜ Telliskivi Maja

·         ABC Kinnisvarateenuste OÜ

·         AS SEB Pank 

·         Autospirit Tartu OÜ

·         Trimetall OÜ

·         Elisa Eesti AS

·         Schüco Eesti OÜ 

·         Armin Kõomägi

·         Peipsirannik MTÜ

·         Tallinna Kaubamaja Grupp AS 

·         Spordiklubi Reval-Sport MTÜ

·         Advokaadibüroo Cobalt OÜ

·         Ramirent Baltic AS

·         Maivi Kaljuvee

·         AS Kapitel 

·         Naiskodukaitse

·         Toyota Baltic AS

·         Silberauto Eesti AS

·         Akzo Nobel Baltics AS

·         Jazz Pesulad OÜ

·         Telia Eesti AS 

The recognition that has been bestowed since 2012 are awarded to private individuals or businesses that have made financial contributions to the field of culture during the year or supported the field of culture with their activities. 

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