Spotlight on Oil Barons of the Last Century
The Philharmonic Hall was built in the Italian Renaissance style in 1912. The building originally served as an exclusive club for wealthy entrepreneurs in Baku. It was converted to a concert hall after the Soviets came into power. As the building was in serious disrepair when Azerbaijan gained its independence in late 1991, President Heydar Aliyev organized for the building to be renovated. The work was completed in late 2003 and the hall reopened January 30, 2004, featuring the performance of world-renown cellist Mstislav Rostropovich who was born in Baku in 1927.
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