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Eiffel Tower 125th birthday

March 31, 2014 - FRANCE

Paris celebrates the 125th anniversary of its landmark Eiffel Tower in 2014. The key celebration dates are 31 Mar 2014, marking the 125th anniversary of the inauguration, and 6 May 2014, marking the anniversary of the opening of the tower to the public at the Universal Exhibition.

An American sonic performance artist and composer, Joseph Bertolozzi, wants to celebrate the 125th birthday with a live concert at the tower by using the structure as a percussive instrument. For his composition called Tower Music, he has recorded the structure's resonances with microphones placed on its surfaces as they were struck with latex mallets and drumsticks. Organizers said the live show would require over 100 musicians, with microphones installed all over the tower relaying sounds to the public below.

The Eiffel Tower opened to a plethora of criticism in 1889 -- the critics regarded it as an eyesore. The opinion hasn't proved enduring or universal -- it has become one of the biggest draws in the world for tourists. Anniversary exhibitions that tell the story of the designer, Gustav Eiffel, and of the construction of the tower are likely to run for all of 2014.

Eiffel tours

Eiffel Tower

Date written/update: 2013-11-20